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Community Languages

Teachers will benefit from an understanding of community language learning and teaching in Britain. Community languages can be considered as all languages in use other than the 'official' or dominant language of the state. Some of these languages have been used in Britain for hundreds of years, others are more recent.. Community language learning has for many years been supported by Supplementary or Complementary schools. These are voluntary schools, organised by minority ethnic and linguistic groups to serve specific linguistic and/or religious and cultural groups, particularly through community language classes.

More recently teachers and schools have been encouraged to use and teach community languages within mainstream schools, and to develop better links with complementary schools. There appears to be two reasons for this: firstly a recognition of the intrinsic value of language learning and maintenance and secondly a greater acceptance that first language development is supportive of second language development. This section includes a range of references, mostly UK based, but also with links to community language research in Europe, North America, New Zealand and Australia.

Section Editor

Angela Creese

On this page you will find web pages from the archived ITTSEAL site for teacher educators new to initial teacher training. Much of this material is being substantially rewritten and incorporated into our new site but we have maintained this archive to support referencing and site users.

The PDF pages are arranged in the same structure as on the original site. Please note that embedded hyperlinks in the documents will not work and external weblinks are no longer necessarily live. If you are searching for a particular resource which you cannot find, please contact us and we will try to help.

Community languages

What are community languages?
Developing community languages and complementary schooling
Using community languages in the mainstream classroom