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Language Practices of Indigenous Children and Youth


Date: 9 November 2017

Congratulations to editors Gillian Wigglesworth, Jane Simpson, Jill Vaughan and all the contributors to the new book Language Practices of Indigenous Children and Youth: The Transition from Home to School in the series Palgrave Studies in Minority Languages and Communities.

The book contains nine papers by CoEDL members, including CoEDL advisory board member Merrkiyawuy Ganambarr-Stubbs.

The contributors explore the experiences of Indigenous children and young adults around the world as they navigate the formal education system and wider society.

Various approaches to helping children manage their home language and learn the language of schooling are examined and profiled.

CI Gillian Wigglesworth says the book offers a range of options and good practice for those working in education within communities with Indigenous languages. She says it will appeal to those working in community development, within an educational context, as well as sociolinguists, applied linguists and students studying within these fields.

The book can be purchased through publishers Palgrave (Springer). Below are the chapter headings and authors.

1     Going to school in a different world by Jane Simpson  and Gillian Wigglesworth


2     Curriculum as Knowledge System: The Warlpiri Theme Cycle by Samantha Disbray and Barbara Martin

3     Language transition(s): school responses to recent changes in language choice in a Northern Dene community (Canada) by Dagmar Jung, Mark Klein and Sabine Stöll 

4     From home to school in multilingual Arnhem Land: The development of Yirrkala School’s bilingual curriculum by Gemma Morales, Jill Vaughan and Merrkiyawuy Ganambarr-Stubbs

5     Unbecoming standards through Ojibwe immersion: The wolf meets ma’iingan by Mary Hermes and Michelle Haskins


6     Code switching or code mixing? Tiwi children’s use of language resources in a multilingual environment by Aidan Wilson, Peter Hurst and Gillian Wigglesworth

7     Languaging their learning: How children work their languages for classroom learning by Susan Poetsch

8     Language Practices of Mbya Guarani Children in a Community-Based Bilingual School by Nayalin Pinho Feller and Jill Vaughan      


9     Dangerous conversations: Teacher-student interactions with unidentified English language learners by Denise Angelo and Catherine Hudson

10   Dis, that and da other: variation in Aboriginal children’s article and demonstrative use at school by Henry Fraser, Ilana Mushin, Felicity Meakins, and Rod Gardner

11   Alyawarr children’s use of two closely-related languages by Sally Dixon 


12   Practicing Living and Being Hopi: Language and Cultural Practices of Contemporary Hopi Youth by Sheilah Nicholas

13   Learning a New Routine: Kaska Language Development and the Convergence of Styles by Barbra A. Meek

14  Beyond school: Digital cultural practice as a catalyst for language and literacy by Inge Kral and Sumathi Renga

  • Australian Government
  • The University of Queensland
  • Australian National University
  • The University of Melbourne
  • Western Sydney University