Reflection Post: Week #2

The first week of classes are done and I have already learned that there is so much more to teaching in multilingual classrooms that what I thought there was. We have barely scratched the surface on the topic, and I am blown away with how much I have already learned in which I am going to share with you.

In Garcia 2017, they talk about how teachers are to develop two types of awareness. The first type of awareness is about plurilingualism and the appreciation of linguistic tolerance and how it benefits a democratic citizenship (García, 2017). The second type of awareness is how teachers are to focus on, which I found interesting was, is the history of colonial and imperialistic oppression that implemented plurilingualism into society (García, 2017). While I was reading this, I did not have a very clear understanding of what both types exactly meant so had to do further research on what some of the other terms meant. Plurilingualism is defined as, “a life-long activity, a process of learning languages of home, society and other peoples; it acknowledges the partial nature of the knowledge anyone can have of one language, be it their mother tongue or not.,” (Mehmedbegovic-Smith & Bak, 2019). Knowing what it means now, I understand how it would benefit a democratic citizenship because when people know more than the language itself like the history of it and their people. This could lead to a more accepting society which could help for people to agree on things and to lead away from the racist side of things. As a future teacher, I find it important to teach the students how something got to be the way it did, as in how it all came to be about. By giving them this background information, it shows them what or what not to do in regard to getting a better end result which is what is being said in the second type of awareness.

FUN FACT: 20% of immigrants in Canada are under the age of 15

(Coelho, 2012)

Something else that I had learned from this week’s readings was how immigrants feel when they move. In the textbook, Language and Learning in Multilingual Classrooms: A Practical Approach, it goes on to talk about the who, why, when, what, and where of the people that move from their homes to somewhere new. When they first move, they feel nervous and scared that they will not be able to catch on and learn the new language or the instruction will be good enough (Coelho, 2012). It also talks about how there is an adjustment process that happens to most people. The first thing that usually happens is the first impressions (Coelho, 2012). They are introduced to so many new things like the driving, different stores, the language, different people etc. Following the first impression is the culture shock, renewed optimism, and integration where they finally feel as if they can call it home (Coelho, 2012). Another thing that they struggle with, which I had no idea about, was how their life at home changes and looks. When they move, many of the immigrants, adolescents, and children, tend to carry a great amount of responsibility for their ages (Coelho, 2012). Many times, this causes a great amount of conflict at home. This can have a negative impact because they go from being somewhere new like a school and then go home to where it should be normal and comforting but can soon not be.

Knowing all of this now, I see how important it is to make sure everyone is educated on this matter and that as a teacher, you try your best to make everyone feel included. Knowing how to properly help these students feel welcome and learn their new way of living will help to relieve all of the stress they may be feeling. As a teacher you need to react quickly and adapt with these matters. By doing this, you are not only helping those individuals alone, but to help your other students adjust too.


Coelho, E. (2012). Language and Learning in Multilingualism Classrooms. Bangor University, UK: Colin Baker.

García, O. (2017). Critical Multilingual Language Awareness and Teacher Education. Language Awareness and Multilingualism, 263-280. doi:10.1007/978-3-319-02240-6_30

Mehmedbegovic-Smith, D., & Bak, T. H. (2019, March 27). Bilingualism, Multilingualism and Plurilingualism: Living in two or more languages. Retrieved from

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