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Realities and perceptions for English teachers of Polish children

Flynn, N. (2014) Realities and perceptions for English teachers of Polish children. In: Boyd, P., Szplit, A. and Zbróg, Z. (eds.) Teacher educators and teachers as learners: international perspectives. Libron-Filip Lohner, Krakow, Poland, pp. 237-258. ISBN 9788364275913

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This chapter examines the responses of English primary school teachers to Polish children arriving in the south of England since 2006. Schools in England have a changing pupil demographic which reflects changing patterns of trans-European migration since the accession of new member states to the EU in 2004 and 2007. There is evidence that this shift is one experienced not just in inner-city schools most commonly associated with minority ethnic populations, but in a wide range of schools in rural and smaller town settings in a number of counties across the country. In adjusting to new identities and new languages in their classrooms, teachers in areas not previously associated with national or ethnic differences are required to respond pedagogically and pastorally in new ways. Their beliefs are compared with the views of migration held by Polish teachers’ from one Polish town affected by migration. Interview data are analysed in order to explore differences in perception towards Polish migrant families and their children. Discussion centres on English teachers’ very positive responses to Polish children, and of how the teacher-friendly behaviour of Polish families may support the construction of stereotypes that are not necessarily a reflection of reality as experienced by the children.

Item Type:Book or Report Section
Divisions:Arts, Humanities and Social Science > International Study and Language Institute (ISLI)
Interdisciplinary Research Centres (IDRCs) > Centre for Literacy and Multilingualism (CeLM)
ID Code:44619
Uncontrolled Keywords:Polish children, English teaching, English policy, new migration
Publisher:Libron-Filip Lohner


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