n Pythagoras - Investigating a scaffold to code-switching as strategy in multilingual classroom

Volume 2008, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 1012-2346
  • E-ISSN: 2223-7895


There is an urgent need to find strategies to assist multilingual learners who are taught by means of English as the language of teaching and learning (LoLT) in coping with subject matter, especially as learners show different levels of English proficiency. One important strategy is code-switching. The possibility of using a glossary, notes and tests given in English and Setswana as scaffold for the code-switching, was investigated in a qualitative study. An intervention was launched in a region where the main language is Setswana. Two schools participated in the study, one school in a rural area and the other in a township. The teaching of a geometry unit was undertaken in which notes, a glossary and tests in English and Setswana were used to assist the learners. The teachers used a strategy of code-switching. Interviews with the learners and the teachers revealed that learners had a positive attitude towards the use of both languages in written work. In contrast, the teachers had mixed feelings, especially about the use of mathematical terminology in Setswana. Difficulties experienced and positive features regarding the use of new Setswana terminology are discussed.

Loading full text...

Full text loading...


Article metrics loading...


This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was a Success
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error