The pivotal and peripheral roles of bilingual classroom assistants at a Swedish elementary school

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

This article presents a qualitative study of how the individual roles and ideologies of four Arabic and Somali bilingual classroom assistants at an elementary school in Sweden both mirror and challenge larger discourses about language, education and social integration. Data were analyzed using the theoretical constructs of positioningand reveal that the classroom assistants were left out of curricular planning and pedagogical decision-making while at the same timetaking on three pivotal roles as disciplinarians, parent-teacher liaisons, and role models to students. As schools seek solutions to instructional dilemmas inherent in the simultaneous inclusion of newcomer immigrant and refugee students in Swedish-medium classrooms and the promotion of bilingualism, this research sheds light on how bilingual classroom assistants take up their roles as mediators of language and culture within this dynamic.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)956-967
Number of pages12
JournalInternational Journal of Bilingual Education and Bilingualism
Volume21
Issue number8
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 17 2018

Keywords

  • Identity construction
  • bilingualism
  • funds of knowledge
  • language ideologies

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Language and Linguistics
  • Education
  • Linguistics and Language

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