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Webinar: The home learning environment – multilingualism and child-wellbeing

A presentation on multilingual children, their development, and wellbeing

In this third joint webinar between NALDIC and the Chartered College of Teaching, Dr Napoleon Katsos, reader at the University of Cambridge and Dr Lisa-Maria Muller, Education Research Manager at the Chartered College of Teaching, explored the links between multilingualism in the family and child well-being.

The COVID-19 crisis has highlighted the role of children’s home learning environment and the Chartered College’s own research has shown that many teachers have recognized its importance and would like to improve links with parents and families as a result. This presentation will therefore focus on one important aspect of the home learning environment; multilingualism and how the knowledge (or lack of knowledge) of multiple languages can affect children’s well-being.

The presentation is based on findings from the presenters’ recently published scoping review, which was co-authored with their colleagues Dr Katie Howard, Dr Elspeth Wilson and Dr Jenny Gibson. It is also linked to the theme of the summer issue of the EAL journal, which will focus on children’s home learning environment and will feature a summary of the issues discussed in this presentation.

Shared materials:

Our presenters:

Dr Napoleon Katsos

Reader in Experimental Pragmatics, University of Cambridge

Dr Napoleon Katsos is Reader in Experimental Pragmatics at the University of Cambridge. He is interested in how psychological research can inform theoretical linguistic inquiry and vice versa. His particular focus is in the area of semantics and pragmatics, and in language learning by monolingual and bilingual children as well as children with Specific Language Impairment and/or Autistic Disorders. He is also Director of Studies for Linguistics at Trinity College, Cambridge. He enjoys taking part in public engagement events and explaining why linguistics is a fascinating topic. Napoleon also thinks that it is important to communicate research findings to the professionals that can make best use of them in practice, in education and mental health – something that he and his colleagues do thanks to the Cambridge Bilingualism Network.

Dr Lisa-Maria Muller

Education Research Manager, Chartered College of Teaching

Dr Lisa-Maria Muller is Education Research Manager at the Chartered College of Teaching, where she works on linking research and practice. She leads on the College’s research work, manages content for the member platform MyCollege and runs the Science Teacher Journal Club project. Before joining the Chartered College of Teaching, Lisa-Maria worked as a postdoctoral research associate at the Universities of Cambridge and York on two projects relating to foreign language learning. At the University of Cambridge, she was also a member of the Cambridge Bilingualism Network and contributed to research and outreach work on multilingualism which included studying the effects of a bilingual education on children’s literacy development, the co-organisation of stakeholder workshops and the co-development of a resource pack for antenatal teachers. In her PhD thesis Lisa-Maria investigated the similarities and differences between typically developing multilingualism and multilingual language disorders. She is a qualified teacher and has worked in secondary schools in Austria and England.

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