Building a strong foundation: Considerations to support thriving bilingualism in Nunavut (2009)

This paper summarizes results from the Nunavut Literacy Council’s literature review and field research on bilingual (English and Inuit) language development in Nunavut.

The author suggests that to achieve stable bilingualism, the Inuit language must be put first. Thriving bilingualism will be achieved when individuals in Nunavut and Nunavik (Northern Quebec) have the opportunity to acquire basic and then advanced skills in both languages and can choose to use their preferred language in any context.

The author describes the current context in Nunavut as an unstable bilingualism, where both the Inuit language and English are widely learned and used, but where knowledge and use of English is surpassing that of the Inuit language, which could lead ultimately to English-language unilingualism.

The author points to factors contributing to this dynamic, including the history of language and literacy development in the North; governmental responses to the Inuit language; tendencies to use English as the “default” language; the impact and limits of parents’ language behaviour; and the urgent need for greater support for early learning with a particular focus on development of language and literacy skills.

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2009-11-09
APA citation
Shelley Tulloch. Building a strong foundation: Considerations to support thriving bilingualism in Nunavut 2009. Web. 23 Oct. 2020 <http://en.copian.ca/library/research/nlc/building/building.pdf>
Shelley Tulloch (2009). Building a strong foundation: Considerations to support thriving bilingualism in Nunavut. Retrieved October 23, 2020, from http://en.copian.ca/library/research/nlc/building/building.pdf
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