What is MTBMLE?
(Mother Tongue Based Multilingual Education and Classroom Strategies)
MLE is a structured program of language learning and cognitive development providing a strong educational foundation in the first language, with successful bridging to one or more additional languages, and enabling the use of both/all languages for life-long learning.
The purpose of a multilingual education program is to develop appropriate cognitive and reasoning skills enabling children to operate equally in their community language, the national language and English. Effective multilingual education begins in the mother tongue of the learner with transition to the second (Filipino) and third languages (English).
MTBMLE is a curriculum and teaching methodology that:
• Lacks relevance and interest to learners real world experiences and situations.
• Limits learners’ ability in developing their second and third languages because the first language is not well developed in the classroom.
• Delays understanding by avoiding use of the language they think in.
• Many think that children who are immersed in a second language from the beginning learn the second language better. They do not.
Educational theory suggests that children learn best from a familiar starting point. Learning should begin with what a child knows and understands. Thus, children learn best when using a language they speak and understand well. Learning to read and write is easier in a familiar language and academic concepts are best learned and understood through their first langauge. Using the Mother Tongue first builds a strong foundation in both language learning and concept learning and provides a good bridge to the second and third languages.
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