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Dangerous Conversations: Teacher-Student Interactions with Unidentified English Language Learners

  • Denise Angelo
  • Catherine Hudson
Chapter
Part of the Palgrave Studies in Minority Languages and Communities book series (PSMLC)

Abstract

Angelo and Hudson analyse a classroom curriculum assessment interview between a teacher and a young Aboriginal student. They show how there is little in the interaction to alert a (non-specialist) teacher that the child is not a poor learner but actually a speaker of an English-lexified contact language and only at an early stage of acquiring Standard Australian English, the medium of classroom instruction. In these (possibly unrecognised) complex language ecologies, the task of both identifying and assessing students’ English language learning needs falls by default to non-specialist classroom teachers. They and their school might be unaware of the need to consider the role of English language learning in their classroom, and untrained in how put this into effect. Nevertheless, it is these classroom teachers who are tasked by professional accountabilities with differentiating pedagogy for their students’ benefit. This has significant policy and classroom ramifications in the many areas where English-lexified contact languages are now spoken.

Keywords

Identification of L2 language learners English as an additional language or dialect (EAL/D) English-lexified contact language Invisible language learner Language assessment by non-specialist classroom teachers Second language assessment 

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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Denise Angelo
    • 1
  • Catherine Hudson
    • 1
  1. 1.Australian National UniversityCanberraAustralia

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