Can code-switching markers be used to establish suitable teaching methods? The new challenge of the pilot primary schools in the French Overseas Collectivity, St. Martin

Olivier-Serge Candau


The French-Dutch island of St Martin, of which the French part became a French Overseas Collectivity on 14 July 2007, is characterized by a multilingual environment and presents the question of which educational and didactic strategies to adopt for French language teaching in these linguistic circumstances. Non-French-speaking children are assessed by the educational team and are given elementary language teaching in CLIN (beginners’ classes for non-French-speaking children). The CLIN teaching relies on methods based on the discipline of French as a Second Language and is presented as a transitional discipline which is needed to ensure comprehension across all educational disciplines. As the CLIN is not in a position to avoid the differences in language, it needs to reinforce the bridges between languages, not only to help the pupils to understand their plural identity but also to reinforce their L1 and TL practices. In these circumstances it is essential to consider the use of multilingual teaching methods.


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