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Frequently Asked Questions

Virtual Language App

“How can I use my pupils’ languages in classroom when I don’t speak them myself?” “How can the local minority language be supported and promoted when there are other languages in the classroom?” “How can I spend an equal amount of time on every pupils’ language, without having it taking over my lessons?”.

These are actual questions from teachers who want to create a multilingual classroom where pupils are allowed and stimulated to use their home language(s). Most teachers are very motivated to incorporate their pupils’ languages but don’t know how. Therefore the VirtuLApp team has collected these questions and presented them to experts in the field of multilingualism. In short videos they give their perspective and concrete ideas about  the creation of multilingual classrooms. The VirtuLApp team hopes that with these videos teachers get inspired and will be able to create their own multilingual approach and encourage their colleagues to do the same.

Below the questions from teachers. Some questions are being answered by multiple experts. You can click on the name of the expert from which you want to hear the answer (Click here to find out more about our experts). Subtitles are available in 7 languages.

Frequently Asked Questions

Answers by experts

How can I encourage my colleagues to incorporate a multilingual approach in the classroom?

I would like to incorporate different languages in the classroom, but I am not sure where to start. What kind of concrete activities take students’ input as a basis?

Would it help if there were bilingual teachers available to support children in learning their first language for a few hours each week?

How can teachers help parents to feel more comfortable about their children using their home language at school?

What good reasons are there in favour of the regular use of home languages in schools?

How can I encourage students to use their language(s) without bringing up sensitive issues (e.g. with refugee children)?

What can I do to encourage students to use their language if they are not able to fully speak/write it?

My students speak many languages. In terms of time, it seems impossible to pay an equal amount of attention to each and every language. How can I include all languages, without having this ‘take over’ my lesson?

Sometimes languages spoken by students have a different status (for example, in some situations speaking French has a different status to speaking Guechua). How can this be balanced in school?

Some students feel ashamed of their home language. How can teachers help them to overcome that shame and to develop more positive feelings about their home language?

How can Irish be supported and promoted along with the other languages in the classroom?

How can teachers facilitate children’s well-being in the multilingual classroom?

What can help teachers to create an excellent multilingual classroom environment?