ERIC Number: ED466739
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2002
Reference Count: N/A
Using Indigenous Languages for Teaching and Learning in Zimbabwe.
This paper argues for the use of indigenous languages as languages of teaching and learning, focusing on Zimbabwe. It describes the language situation in Zimbabwe, which has three national languages (all of which enjoy some prominence under the current Education Act) and fourteen minority indigenous languages. English plays a central role in Zimbabwe's education system as the language of instruction. It is often introduced on the first day of school. Indigenous languages have not been taken seriously as subjects of study. Instead, there is a heavy emphasis on English proficiency, which jeopardizes proficiency in the mother tongue. Some steps have been taken toward stabilizing Zimbabwe's indigenous languages (e.g., establishment of an African languages project at the university, introduction of an indigenous language newspaper, and increased teaching of second languages to a variety of learners). After discussing the importance of indigenous language usage in teaching and learning, the paper concludes with several steps that should be taken to help stabilize indigenous languages in Zimbabwe, including the following: a stronger move toward strengthening mother tongue education, provision of solid bilingual training for teachers, and provision of money by the Zimbabwean government and educational planners for developing indigenous languages. (Contains 10 references.) (SM)
Descriptors: African Languages, Elementary Secondary Education, English (Second Language), Foreign Countries, Indigenous Populations, Language of Instruction, Minority Groups, Multilingualism, Native Language Instruction, Public Policy
For full text: http://jan.ucc.nau.edu/~jar/ILAC.
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Zimbabwe