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TESOL Quarterly: Promoting Plurilingualism: Majority Language in Multilingual Settings (MARILLE)

Book review

Author: Catherine Seewald/14 October 2013/Categories: Journal article

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In her book review, Colette Despagne, Western University, London, Ontario, Canada, emphasizes the link between the EU language policy and the project of the European Centre for Modern Languages (ECML) of the Council of Europe entitled "MARILLE – Majority Language Instruction as a Basis for Plurilingual Education".

Considering growing migration population and student heterogeneity in educational institutions, as well as the fact that the language of schooling may not be the children's first language, plurilingualism is not only a goal to be achieved but the reality itself in Europe. These developments highlight the need to promote plurilingualism across our societies – which has become a key element of the European Union's language policy – and to develop and implement plurilingual teaching approaches.

As a result of the MARILLE Project (2008-2011), the volume Promoting Plurilingualism: Majority Language in Multilingual Settings edited by the ECML supports the EU language policy. The publication highlights the importance for secondary school teachers to adopt a plurilingual approach that will help, for instance, migrant children to adapt to their new environment. It also provides examples and identifies practices and strategies on how to achieve that. It stresses in particular the fact that the shift to plurilingual paradigms involves not only linguistic issues but also cultural competences that teachers should be aware of. The publication is a reliable guide for teachers and a tool to encourage plurilingualism in schools, which is also the goal of the EU’s language policy. 

Adina Dan


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