Teach For Bulgaria teachers work with students whose mother tongue is not Bulgarian in almost all of our partner schools.The majority of these students are Roma, but our participants also work with refugees and with children whose mother tongue is Turkish. They agree that almost all of their students whose mother tongue is not Bulgarian need additional Bulgarian language training.
All subjects are taught in Bulgarian, so more often than not poor Bulgarian language skills cause children to lag behind their peers. These students have difficulties mastering their lessons and learning new skills, they feel misunderstood and unsuccessful. This often puts them at a great risk of dropping out.
And besides, a good enough methodology for teaching Bulgarian as a second language hasn’t even been developed yet. This presents a serious challenge for teachers who work with bilingual students. There is a complete lack of educational resources for additional language training and support tailored to the specifics of our Bulgarian context.
This is why there is an urgent need to develop effective specialized concepts and educational resources for teachers who work with bilingual children.
What is the main goal of this project?
Our goal is to develop functional, practical, and useful Bulgarian language training tools for primary school students.
This initiative builds on the best practices from a previous successful Erasmus+ project called Language Аgainst Dropout (LAD) (project № 2015-1-BG01-KA201-014306) in partnership with Heidelberg University. The educational resources “Bulgarian for Multilingual Children with Drako and Mimi”, which support Bulgarian language training for children aged 5, 6, and 7(preschool and first grade), have been developed as part of this project.
Partnering with the authors of these resources at EducArt, our goal is to develop a language acquisition program for older students – grades 2, 3, and 4.
Teach For Bulgaria is a non-governmental organization which works towards providing equal access to quality education to every child in Bulgaria. Our mission is to recruit, train, and develop capable and motivated professionals who are willing to make a long-term career commitment to positive change in education in Bulgaria. Find out more about us and our program.
The main focus of EducArt is the development and implementation of modern training methods and their creative use in the field of language acquisition for children whose mother tongue is not Bulgarian (a.k.a. bilinguals), as well as the professional development of teachers in this field. You can find more information about EducArt on their website.
Impact on students’ language skills:
- The impact on students’ language skills will be measured with a diagnostic test (developed especially for this project) conducted at the beginning and at the end of the school year.
- A control group of students will be tested in the same way. Their results will be compared with those of the experimental group.
- Students’ language skills might also be measured with a rubric for classroom observation at the beginning and at the end of the school year.
Impact on teachers’ professional development:
- The impact on teachers’ professional development will be measured by a self-evaluation form and a didactics test conducted at the beginning and at the end of the school year.