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Teachers’ language attitudes and production patterns in St. Kitts


Schmalz, Mirjam (2023). Teachers’ language attitudes and production patterns in St. Kitts. World Englishes, 42(1):115-129.

Abstract

This study looks at language attitudes and production patterns of teachers in St. Kitts in the Eastern Caribbean, based on metalinguistic interviews conducted with nine teachers and one principal, as well as field notes from classroom observations. The analysis of these data shows generally positive attitudes towards Kittitian Creole (KC) amongst the teachers, who value KC for its cultural significance. However, KC was rather seen as ancillary in the education setting, with English taking centre stage. The classroom observations exhibit a majority use of standardised English by the teachers, with instances of KC in certain situations, such as for direct questions, scolding, or motivating, indicating ‘functional mixing’ (Youssef, 2014, p. 201) by teachers. This article provides first insights into de facto language policies in Kittitian classrooms, adding data from a lesser studied variety to the academic discourse on the role of English and Creole in Caribbean education.

Abstract

This study looks at language attitudes and production patterns of teachers in St. Kitts in the Eastern Caribbean, based on metalinguistic interviews conducted with nine teachers and one principal, as well as field notes from classroom observations. The analysis of these data shows generally positive attitudes towards Kittitian Creole (KC) amongst the teachers, who value KC for its cultural significance. However, KC was rather seen as ancillary in the education setting, with English taking centre stage. The classroom observations exhibit a majority use of standardised English by the teachers, with instances of KC in certain situations, such as for direct questions, scolding, or motivating, indicating ‘functional mixing’ (Youssef, 2014, p. 201) by teachers. This article provides first insights into de facto language policies in Kittitian classrooms, adding data from a lesser studied variety to the academic discourse on the role of English and Creole in Caribbean education.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:06 Faculty of Arts > English Department
Dewey Decimal Classification:820 English & Old English literatures
Language:English
Date:1 March 2023
Deposited On:23 Nov 2022 12:41
Last Modified:21 Jun 2024 03:43
Publisher:Wiley-Blackwell Publishing, Inc.
ISSN:0883-2919
OA Status:Closed
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1111/weng.12613