Understanding how to extend language learning beyond the classroom and into the home and family life of the enrolled preschool students in an Indigenous language immersion program is the focus of this study. The study explored the role of family education in language revitalization by asking families to describe their children’s target language learning outside of school; if the parents/caregivers feel able to support their children’s language acquisition without studying the language themselves; which types of resources they are most likely to engage with to facilitate second language acquisition; and what strategies parents/caregivers use to learn the language alongside their children. The results of this study show the limited language background of many parents/caregivers of enrolled immersion program students; outline motivating factors for language revitalization participation; identify activity based family programming and time spent in the immersion classroom as favored strategies for parents/caregivers to learn the target language and find that lack of time and energy are limitations faced by families to participate in family educational programming. Addressing the language fluency deficiencies within the adult population of Indigenous speaking communities as well as moving language use into wider daily practice have also been addressed by this study.
A Thesis Submitted to the Faculty of the Graduate School of the University of Minnesota in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree of Master of Education, May 2014
Committee names: Joyce Strand (Chair), Diane J. Rauschenfels. This item has been modified from the original to redact the signatures present.
University of Minnesota, Duluth. College of Education and Human Service Professions.
Shields, Sanna Mourita.
Examining the Role of Family Education within Language Revitalization.
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