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ERIC Number: EJ1415918
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2024
Pages: 28
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0167-8507
EISSN: EISSN-1613-3684
Family Language Policies during a Global Pandemic: Challenges and Opportunities for Language Maintenance in Arabic-English Multilingual Families in the USA
Einas Bashir Albadawi; Bedrettin Yazan
Multilingua: Journal of Cross-Cultural and Interlanguage Communication, v43 n2 p213-240 2024
In this study, we analyze interview data from 17 mothers of Arabic-English multilingual families to examine their experiences of maintaining their children's Arabic language development during the COVID-19 pandemic. We were interested in exploring the challenges they faced during the pandemic and their responses to those challenges with the resources available. Following a constant comparative method, our data analysis demonstrated that four main factors have impacted Arabic-English multilingual Muslim families' language policies during the pandemic, i.e.: (1) inner-family dynamics, (2) school closures, (3) children's agency, and (4) family safety and wellbeing. Responding to those factors, participants' family language policies were guided by their commitment to Arabic as the language of Islam (i.e. performing religious practices and maintaining connection with the written Islamic heritage) and as an indispensable component of their children's ethno-religious identities. During the lockdown, when their children could not attend Arabic tutoring, mothers developed new strategies to support their children's language socialization (e.g., Halaka, more frequent family visit, online tutoring). When schools switched to online learning, their children had more time to spend at home, which most mothers used as an opportunity to have their children practice Arabic more and, in some cases, conduct daily Arabic literacy tutoring at home. All those mothers' creative responses to COVID-19 challenges were complexified by children's agency and concerns about family safety and wellbeing.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research; Tests/Questionnaires
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A