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WHAT do I want students to transfer and WHY?

Selecting content knowledge and language learning strategies from the programmes:

Based on the teacher’s pedagogical intentions, and the students’ abilities and needs, the teacher targets certain features of the language programme as the focus for transfer-oriented language learning lessons or units.

Although transfer activities are based on the student’s capacity to compare languages, finding similarities and differences does not necessarily signify a repetition of approaches, materials or bridging activities. While planning, the teacher can choose between the following options:

  1. Connecting to the other language class by targeting a similar element between the ELA and FSL programmes  

The ELA and FSL programmes have corresponding language skills, strategies and competencies. It is possible to plan to establish connections between the languages, while addressing both programmes. It is important to underline that targeting similar elements between programmes does not necessitate that teachers master the content of both programmes. The teachers can access information about the other language class by questioning the students about their knowledge and the language  learning strategies they use, or by  consulting their language teaching partner.

You will find, below, examples of similarities shared between the ELA and FSL programmes.

Common excerpts from ELA and FSL programmes (p.41 old version)

2. Connecting to the other language class by targeting complementary elements between the ELA and FSL programmes

Complementary planning for explicit instruction of transfer also implies connecting between languages while addressing both programmes. However, it means more than repeating instruction from one class to the other. The goal is to extend understanding of the ‘’focus’’ language by using prior knowledge learned in the other language class as a stepping stone.

Here are some sections from the ELA and FSL programmes that complement one another.

Complementarity between ELA and FSL programmes excerpts (p.42 old version)

For more information, refer to Types of Transfer.