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  • Living reference work
  • © 2020

Handbook of Early Language Education


  • The first handbook to offer a comprehensive, international and interdisciplinary overview of early childhood language education

  • The volume covers preschool ages 3-6, from diverse ethno-linguistics groups

  • Comprises immigrant, indigenous, endangered, heritage, regional, minority, marginalized, foreign and second languages, as well as majority languages

Part of the book series: Springer International Handbooks of Education (SIHE)

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Table of contents (33 entries)

  1. Early Immersion in Minority Language Contexts: Canada and Finland

    • Karita Mård-Miettinen, Stephanie Arnott, Marie-Josée Vignola
  2. Early Language Education in Australia

    • Susana A. Eisenchlas, Andrea C. Schalley
  3. Early Language Education in Israel

    • Shulamit Kopeliovich
  4. Early Language Education in Luxembourg

    • Claudine Kirsch, Claudia Seele
  5. Early Language Education in Malta

    • Charles L. Mifsud, Lara Ann Vella
  6. Early Language Education in Russia

    • Ekaterina Protassova
  7. Early Language Education in Singapore

    • Poh Wee Koh, Beth Ann O’Brien
  8. Early Years Education and the Reversal of Language Shift

    • Renée DePalma, Iria Sobrino-Freire
  9. English as a Foreign Language in Early Language Education

    • Danijela Prošić-Santovac, Vera Savić

About this book

This is the first international and interdisciplinary handbook to offer a comprehensive and an in-depth overview of findings from contemporary research, theory, and practice in early childhood language education in various parts of the world and with different populations. The contributions by leading scholars and practitioners are structured to give a survey of the topic, highlight its importance, and provide a critical stance. The book covers preschool ages 3-6, and looks at children belonging to diverse ethno-linguistic groups and experiencing different histories and pathways of their socio-linguistic and socio-cultural development and early education. The languages under the scope of this handbook are identified by the contributors as immigrant languages, indigenous, endangered, heritage, regional, minority, majority, and marginalized, as well as foreign and second languages, all of which are discussed in relation to early language education as the key concept of the handbook. In this volume, “early language education” will refer to any kind of setting, both formal and informal (e.g. nursery, kindergarten, early childhood education centers, complementary early schooling etc.) in which language learning within a context of children's sociolinguistic diversity takes place before elementary school. 


  • early childhood language development
  • early language education
  • language proficiency
  • language learning in informal settings
  • home language
  • socio-cultural development and early education
  • teacher language practices in early childhood
  • bilingual multilingual upbringing
  • sociolinguistics in early childhood education
  • parent teacher interaction
  • language socialization

Editors and Affiliations

  • Language Department, Oranim Academic College of Education, Kiriat Tivon, Israel

    Mila Schwartz

About the editor

Mila Schwartz is a Professor in Language and in Oranim Academic College of Education (Israel). Her research interests include language policy and models of early bilingual/multilingual education; linguistic, cognitive, and socio-cultural development of early sequential bilinguals; family language policy; and language teachers’ pedagogical development. Recently, she has proposed and elaborated on the following theoretical concepts: language-conducive context, language-conducive strategies and child language-based agency. She held the position of Secretary of the Steering Committee of the International Symposium of Bilingualism from 2015 to 2019, and currently she acts as Convenor of the Multilingual Childhoods network. In addition to her academic work, Prof. Schwartz is an Academic Adviser of “Hand in Hand: Center for Jewish-Arab Education” and the Russian-Hebrew speaking bilingual preschools in Israel.

Bibliographic Information