Guiding Young ESL/EFL/Returnee Students with Multilingual Narratives

Open Access
Park, Ju Huyn
Area of Honors:
Bachelor of Arts
Document Type:
Thesis Supervisors:
  • Celeste S Kinginger, Thesis Supervisor
  • Lisa Ruth Sternlieb, Honors Advisor
  • Meredith Christine Doran, Faculty Reader
  • Multilingual literature
  • Literacy-based approach
  • Language and Identity
  • Creative writing
  • SLA research data.
This paper addresses the importance of using the writings of successful bi- and multi-lingual authors and of other non-native speakers of English learners as the main sources of teaching materials to enhance the long-term development of young English language learners’ linguistic and cultural identities and their creative use of their multiple languages. In the field of Applied Linguistics, there have been numerous studies on language identity and its implications for teaching and learning, especially for immigrants or international students in ESL contexts (Kanno, 2003). However, in order to explore this topic in depth, it is important to go beyond mere implications to propose specific pedagogical practices, their potential effectiveness for learners, and the outcomes they may engender. The present study includes extensive literature reviews on the ongoing growth of plurilingualism, for both individuals and in educational settings as explored in Applied Linguistics research, as well as close examinations of accomplished multilingual writers’ literary works and their writing strategies. With a reflective and narrative approach, this study describes a guiding pedagogical unit that can be conducted in a variety of educational settings and situations to elicit more meaningful language through various writing activities and discussions for young ESL/EFL/Returnee students of high-intermediate and/or advanced proficiency levels. The proposed study unit integrates some short excerpts from major multilingual narratives such as novels, memoirs, poetry and short stories, with the goal of promoting student interaction with these texts, using them as springboards for addressing various language identity issues that many second language learners face in the context of language education and daily life.