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SM SAINS TENGKU MUHAMMAD FARIS PETRA I  INTERNATIONAL BACCALAUREATE WORLD SCHOOL

LANGUAGE POLICY

Rationale:  

Language is essential in providing opportunities for learning and for students to achieve success in both their academic and social lives. This document guides teaching and learning in relation to all the languages taught at Tengku Muhammad Faris Petra Science School (SMSTMFP). Through language, we strive to foster individual skills and capabilities in both the medium of instruction and in students’ Mother Tongue (MT) so that they are able to participate in a multi-lingual and multi-cultural global context.

Objectives:

The school should be able to provide:
1. a philosophy on language and language instruction
2. definitions of language terminology (Mother Tongue, Native Language, Language and Literature, Language Acquisition, etc.)
3. guidelines for student placement in language classes

Guidelines:

1. Definitions:

Language of Instruction: The language in which the school’s programme is delivered. At SMSTMFP, the language of instruction is Bahasa Melayu (Malay Language). This can also be referred to as the school’s Language and Literature. Throughout this document, however, it will be referred to as the Language of Instruction.

Student’s Language and Literature: The student’s best language, or a language at which the student has reached native speaker equivalency; can also be referred to as mother tongue (MT), native language, and first language; typicallyand the language of instruction.

Language Acquisition:English Language (which all students study), Arabic, Japanese, French and Mandarin (as an additional language): Specifically used in the MYP, a language other than one that is considered as native, first or mother tongue language.
Dual Language Programme ( DLP) :Dual-language education, formerly called bilingual education, refers to academic programs that are taught in two languages (*Since the term bilingual education has negative associations, it is now more commonly called dual-language education, among other terms).
 The Dual Language Programme (DLP) is a programme under the government’s initiative to ‘Empower Bahasa Malaysia and Strengthen English’ policy. 

With its core purpose of giving students the opportunity to use English in Science and Mathematics. The DLP is expected to boost English proficiency in government schools, as well as enhance students’ future employability opportunities. English Language will be used in the teaching and learning f Science and Mathematics.

2. Language Philosophy 

Teaching and learning addresses the diversity of student language needs, including those for students learning in a language(s) other than the mother tongue.Language encompasses all of the work we do with our students in supporting their development in the Language and Literature, and Language Acquisition.

Learning is central to intellectual, social and emotional development and fundamental to developing the traits of the International Baccalaureate (IB) Learner Profile. Individuals achieve their potential when they can use languages effectively as a vehicle for inquiry, self-expression and communication in a range of contexts and for a variety of purposes. The development of the attributes of the Learner Profile involves the acquisition of language concepts, understandings, skills and attitudes that will empower all students to: 
• frame and express their thinking and respond to the thinking of others 
• communicate effectively
• understand, comprehend and appreciate
• acquire a sense of belonging to a wide range of groups and communities.

All teachers are responsible for language learning development. All staff demonstrates the shared commitment and responsibility we have as a learning community to create contexts both inside the school and the community that ensure this empowerment in language acquisition. The school places importance on language learning, including mother tongue, host country languageand other languages. 

We aim to equip and support members of our learning community with the skills required to communicate comprehensively and meaningfully, and to be thoughtful and reflective communicators. The SMSTMFP community encourages open-minded interaction and aims to foster an appreciation of cultural richness and diversity.  

We recognize that all individuals are on a journey of acquiring and applying increasingly complex language understanding, skills and attitudes, and that the approach to learning and teaching must differentiate for these various learning needs. Value must be placed on all students’ languages and cultures, and high academic expectations must be communicated to all students. 

3. Language Learning Support

Language support takes place inside and outside of the classroom. All teachers are aware of their role as language teachers promoting language skills that are necessary for students to access content and express their learning in a variety of ways. Teachers foster an environment that recognizes different intelligences and skills of the students.  

a. Teachers provide students with interdisciplinary learning between their language studies and other subjects through a variety of learning experiences that link language learning to daily life and the world.   

b. Teachers expose students to a range of cultural perspectives and foster intercultural understanding and appreciation.  

c. Where possible, language learning is a scaffolding process and alternative assessments are implemented as appropriate for the student’s level of language development.

4. Programme Structures

All language programmes are designed as a continuum to foster language development of the intellectual and developmental progress of students.

5. Resources

a. SMSTMFP provides some resources in the languages represented in the school population in its library collection, the English Resource Room(ERR), Arabic, French and Japanese Rooms.

b. The need for resources is identified by consultation between the teacher librarians, teachers, students and parents.

c. Access to the global community through on-line resources or the social media is available to all at the various outlets available in the library,the Bahasa Melayu Room the English Resource Room (ERR), Arabic, French and Japanese Rooms, including the computer and science laboratories.



6. Communication with Parents

a. SMSTMFP recognizes the important role of parents in the learning process, and makes efforts to make parents familiar with the curriculum. Parental awareness allows for the discussion of schoolwork within families, communication with teachers, and the ability to ask questions of the school. Parents are involved in planning their child’s language growth and development. 

b. SMSTMFP informs parents about the language programme and pathways available in their transition between programmes through information sessions. These same sessions provide opportunities to inform parents on the importance of all the languages taught at the school.

c. SMSTMFP follows a regular reporting process as outlined in the Assessment Policy.

d. Teachers are expected to keep regular contact with parents of students who attend language lessons 5 to 6 periods per week. Emails and phone calls are acceptable means of communication. Teachers are also available to discuss parent concerns.
e. Parents are encouraged to do the following:
• attend parent-teacher information sessions
• become involved in the PTA
• support their children by encouraging literacy at home
• monitor study and completion of assignments
• encourage their children to maintain the use of their home language
• give moral support to the school in having language programmes
• give assistance (personal or professional) to the school in supporting their children’s development in language learning.


7.Supporting Student’s Mother Tongue (MT) Development

a. SMSTMFP values the importance of MT development and its benefits. Students who learn with continued MT support have positive self-esteem, enhanced academic success and cognitive development that promote language acquisition.  

b. Students are encouraged to use their MT where it will add to their understanding in all subject areas and their social development.  

c. All students are assisted in accessing first language resources and are allowed and encouraged to access them to research, communicate, and partake in language practice to aid in all aspects of their learning.

d. Parents are encouraged to support their children’s MT by speaking, reading and writing in that language at home.

e. The school encourages students to conduct student led conferences in their MT, where applicable. Conferences give students the chance to participate and translate for non-English speaking parents. Students see the value of themselves as multi-lingual communicators. 

f. Opportunities are created for social and cultural activities that promote MT usage and awareness and respect for MT form an integral part of school life.


8. Language and Professional Development   

a. Due to the number of languages taught at SMSTMFP, language and literacy education has been identified as an area of focus for the school. 

b. Teachers are encouraged to pursue professional development to meet the literacy needs of their students through qualification in the areas of language throughLearning Support Needs, Reading Specialists, Literacy Coaches, or Librarianship/Library Sciences.

c. Teachers are also encouraged to attend courses, workshops, seminars and conferences to upgrade their pedagogical skills.

The school willbe involved in a professional learning community by organizing collaborative programmes with other schools and making benchmarking trips to other schools in the country and/or abroad.

@ 2018 SMSTMFP WEBSITE