Literature Circles Enhancing Cultural Awareness and Language ‎Acquisition for Adult Learners of Arabic

Hayder Al Hamdany, Michelle Picard

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Language and culture are inextricably linked. Consequently, the teaching of cultural awareness as part of additional language instruction is crucial to increasing language proficiency. This paper examines how literature circles are utilized and actively modelled in the teaching and learning of the Arabic language and its culture in an adult Arabic as an Additional Language classroom in Iraq with beginner, intermediate and advanced learners. The impact of the literature circles pedagogy is explored through the analysis of audio transcripts of the interactions during the class, student journals reflections on their experiences participating in the study, and the researcher’s field notes recording their observations during the literature circle activities. Eight participants from diverse cultural and linguistic backgrounds were divided into two multi-level groups. The data revealed that the literature circle methodology increased student-to-student interaction and collaborative learning and understanding of Arabic culture. These outcomes resulted in enhanced confidence in using the language and, consequently language proficiency in the Arabic language.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)89-102
Number of pages14
JournalThe International Journal of Language, Society and Culture
Volume10
Issue number3
Early online dateMay 2022
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2022
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Adult language learners
  • Arabic as an additional language
  • Culturally diverse learners
  • Language/culture nexus
  • Literature circles

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