Do you speak English? ... Yes, I do!
A great interest in implementing bilingual education (in its different varieties) has been visible across the European Union since the early '90s.
The need to overcome the European syndrome of the “Tower of Babel” resulted, in 1994, in the development of methodological base consolidating teaching and learning. This document, CLIL (Content and Language Integrated Learning), defines the dual approach to language teaching – the second language is used for teaching and learning of both subject and language. In other words, students acquire knowledge not “in English”, but through the English language. This language is simultaneously a tool for improving knowledge, as well as an end in itself – a skill that students systematically improve somewhat casually.
Towards the New European
The long-term goal of the European Union is multilingualism, that is a situation in which every EU citizen has working skills in at least two languages in addition to their mother tongue. One of them will undoubtedly be the English language (it is estimated that by 2100 nearly half of the world’s population will be able to communicate in English). From this perspective, the introduction of bilingualism in our school can be seen in the wider European context.
Talking about bilingual education we should emphasize its impact on the holistic development of the pupil. The undoubted added value of this model is its cultural dimension – openness towards the international community, ability and need to utilize the achievements of other nationalities. The environmental dimension is no less important, as is the language and learning skills development. Bilingual education, starting in elementary school, brings multi-dimensional effects at all levels of education and in the later – adult life.
Bilingualism at Karolkowa Street
In our private primary school we adopted the model of bilingualism consisting in teaching through the English language some of the selected subjects (as opposed to eg. the model involving alternate use of Polish and English during each lesson).
The bilingual class – beyond the implementation of the curriculum in Polish – also implements two subjects in English
In the bilingual program, our pupils have 10 hours of English lessons weekly in grades 1-3, and in grades 4-6 -13 hours.