While the growing trend for multilingualism or language diversity continues to rise, the issue of bilingual education in India is becoming an ever more difficult issue. The Government of India, which is a significant factor in the phase of curricular design in India, is central to this question. Bilingual training can be described as an instructional form wherein the student in the education system can use two or more languages as the learning medium. In India, the curriculum design phase triggered by education policies may carry on considerable factors of motivation, aspirations, and interest especially the forces that support the preservation of minority languages in India.
Languages in India
The national language of India, Hindi along with 21 other local languages. These are Manipuri, Assamese, Gujarati, Bengali, Bodo, Kannada, Dogri, Kashmiri, Malayalam, Konkani, Maithili, Punjabi, Marathi, Sindhi, Telugu, Nepali, Sanskrit, Oriya, Tamil, Santali, and Urdu. Education in India follows the three-language formulation in which Hindi, English, and regional language should be taught to children.
Goals of Bilingual Education
The primary purpose of the bilingual education program is to enable students with minimal English skills to teach the state curriculum and English to all students who participate in the program. This is achieved by explicit instruction in all fields of study, speech, learning, and writing. Thus, students with limited English skills (LEP) can learn to speak English and continue their course in the same grade as native English speakers. The aim is to combine fair access and educational quality for all students. Bilingual education priorities include:
- Teaching English speakers two languages
- Encouraging academic performance
- Supporting those who plan to move to a new region
- Creation of national language resources
- Every student can learn English
- Preserving the language and cultural heritage of a minority community
Benefits of Bilingual Education
A great deal of research is being conducted to figure out how people can grow up to benefit from bilingual education.
- Many cultural opportunities are provided through bilingual education
One of the key benefits of entering a bilingual education is that you encounter people from diverse backgrounds. Understanding other cultures is effective as it helps children perceive the universe around them. It allows them to develop and embrace differences.
- Bilingual education’s cognitive advantages
The cognitive functioning of the brain can be improved by bilingual education. In reality, studies show it can improve skills in functions like inhibition, attention switching, and working memory since bilingual students can use the two or more languages concurrently and shift frequently. Since these students who have been bilingually trained do the most better work, even though they do not have a direct connection with the language. These tasks require multitasking, strategic thinking, and problem-solving skills.
- Bilingual education increases opportunities for careers
They will also be able to take part in courses or an exchange program in another country that helps them in their skills, immersed in the culture of their second language.
- Additional educational opportunities
One of the key advantages of bilingual education is that children are brought up not only bilingual but also biliterate. This will give the child more options in choosing additional education ways. Many multinational businesses are more and more looking for bilingual workers in the rising global economy today. The profit is for those with bilingual education. Bilingual employees stand out, particularly if it is a language that is commonly spoken, by many other potential employees.
- Bilingual education’s children are more flexible
Language is not only about learning vocabulary and grammar but also about learning a new culture, traditions, and life. The value of bilingual education provides children with a wider viewpoint and takes them closer to various races and nationalities. Communication is now becoming highly essential in a world that is continuously evolving. Children who can interact with a range of cultures have more benefits in life.
- Enhance self-awareness and personality
Language is at the very heart of our identity because that is how we connect to history, family, community, and education. It is necessary to bear in mind that while bilingual education teaches new languages to students, they still use their native language. The preservation of a firm hold on one’s identity has immense importance. This represents an immense boost to self-esteem and helps students stay linked even though they encounter a new community. This type of education helps students in their first language to reinforce their speech. In their second language, they at the same time are refining a voice.
Bilingual education is described in the classroom as interventions that use English learners’ mother-tongues use in programs means that bilingual training is a teaching concept in two languages, a local tongue and a secondary language with different quantities of each language used according to the model of the program.