Maintaining korean heritage language in a midwest public elementary school
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Maintaining Korean heritage language in a Midwest public elementary school. Hee Young Choi ([email protected]) University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. I. Introduction. 1. Purpose of the Study To examine Korean elementary students’ perspectives and attitudes to:

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Maintaining korean heritage language in a midwest public elementary school

Maintaining Korean heritage language in a Midwest public elementary school

Hee Young Choi ([email protected])

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign


I introduction

I. Introduction

1. Purpose of the Study

  • To examine Korean elementary students’ perspectives and attitudes to:

    - KLS (Korean Language School)

    - Korean class in Pine Grove Elementary school


Maintaining korean heritage language in a midwest public elementary school

2. Background

  • Traditional studies on HL (Heritage Language) maintenance

  • Increasing new group of students: ESA (Early Study Abroad)/Migrating Korean students

    - 110,000 Korean students in the U.S.(U.S. ICE, 2009)

    - About 30,000 K-12 Korean ESA students in 2006 (KEDI, 2006)


Maintaining korean heritage language in a midwest public elementary school

Korean Students Early Study Abroad

Excluded: immigration, accompanying with dispatched parents

(Dong-A Ilbo, Sep. 23, 2007)


Maintaining korean heritage language in a midwest public elementary school

3. Problem Statement

  • Dominant discourse of English-only context

  • Linguistic cost

    - Short term: Elementary students

    - Long term: Secondary school students


Maintaining korean heritage language in a midwest public elementary school

4. Keys to maintain Korean HL

  • L1 program in public school

  • Collaborative effort between local KLS and public schools

  • Educating Korean parents and public school teachers


Ii literature review

II. Literature Review

1. HLL (Heritage Language Learner)

  • Traditional definition: “someone who is raised in a home where a non-English language is spoken” (Valdés, 2001, p. 38)

  • Lee & Shin (2008): growing pool of Korean heritage language speakers - Broad range of proficiency from high to none in Korean oral or literacy skills: Temporary residents from Korea (ESA students)


Maintaining korean heritage language in a midwest public elementary school

"Responsibility for maintenance and development of the native language is usually left to the family, and public school support for the development of Korean at the K-12 level is still rare.“ (Lee & Shin, 2008, p. 8)


Iii method

III. Method

1. Qualitative Research & Case Study

  • Denzin & Lincoln (2005)

    - Meanings in the natural setting

  • Stake (2005)

    - Questions of what specially can be learned from the single case


Maintaining korean heritage language in a midwest public elementary school

2. Data Collection

  • KLS: 4 months observation, interview with principal, a teacher, and six 3rd grade students

  • L1 program of Pine Grove Elementary school: 4 months observation of Korean class and ESL class focusing on three 1st grade girl students, interview with those focal students, L1 program director, and Korean  and ESL teachers


Iv findings

IV. Findings

<Champaign-Urbana Korean Language School> 

  • Affiliated by a Korean church

  • Founded in 1979 w/ only 10-15 elementary school students

  • Currently, in 2008, more than 100 students

    - Pre K to 3rd G.


Maintaining korean heritage language in a midwest public elementary school

1. Students’ Attitudes

  • Low motivation: “No need to learn Korean”

    “This is not a school. This is a church, Ajeosi (uncle).”

    “Regular school is very interesting but Korean school is boring.”


Maintaining korean heritage language in a midwest public elementary school

2. Parents’ Attitudes

  • English Only, Only English

    Researcher: What do you expect Hyunsu to accomplish through the staying in the U.S.?

    Hyunsu’s mother: I had to use averagely $200-300 per month to teach English in Korea. So, this is a good opportunity to learn English. I want her to master not only English speaking but also reading and writing fluently.


Maintaining korean heritage language in a midwest public elementary school

Researcher: Do you prepare something for her for returning to Korea?

Hyunsu’s mother: I don’t know yet but some parents who came here for a year concentrate on English learning for the first half year. Then a few months before returning to Korea they emphasize for their children to study math because math is difficult in Korea.


Maintaining korean heritage language in a midwest public elementary school

<KHL (Korean Heritage Language) Program of Pine Grove Elementary>

  • Midwest

  • Twin Cities w/ a big university

  • The only HL program in two school districts

  • 11 Heritage Languages: Indonesian, French, Lao, Turkish, Korean, Japanese, Swahili, Vietnamese, Chinese, Arabic, and Russian


Maintaining korean heritage language in a midwest public elementary school

  • Continuing bilingual competence

    - Immigrant family students

    - University affiliated students

  • Respected minority language and culture

    - Positive self-esteem

    - Opening up to learning


Maintaining korean heritage language in a midwest public elementary school

1. KLS vs. KHL Program


Maintaining korean heritage language in a midwest public elementary school

2. Students’ L1, L2 Participation/Development

  • Socio-cultural Aspect

    - KHL class: Comfort zone

    “When I came to the Korean class, I was happy because I could talk, shout, or even express my anger. However, in the ESL or regular class, I just kept silent because I didn’t know how to do that in English!” (Sunju)


Maintaining korean heritage language in a midwest public elementary school

  • Competition vs. Cooperation

  • Creating different relationship among students: Power shift

    - K: Hawon > Sunju > Euri

    - E: Euri > Sunju > Hawon

    (Euri: born in the U.S.

    Sunju: 1.5 years in the U.S.

    Hawon: 3 months in the U.S)


Maintaining korean heritage language in a midwest public elementary school

3. Linguistic Aspect

  • L1-L2 interdependence

    - Cross-transfer

    - Helping conceptualization

  • Coordinated instruction with regular class curriculum: ESL class


Findings

Findings

  • KHL vs. ESL

4. Thinking Readjustment in Korea

- Mrs. Hong: Concerned

Because their way of thinking has been changed a lot, they could have hard time when they try to adjust to Korean school. … Another big headache is “Wangtta” -outcast- at Korean school. They could be isolated by the classmates because of their lack of Korean language ability.


Maintaining korean heritage language in a midwest public elementary school

4. Challenges

  • Recruiting qualified language teacher

  • Negotiating w/ different grades & language levels

  • Coordinating w/ regular class curriculum

  • Educating parents


V discussion implication

V. Discussion/Implication

  • Parents Views on Bilingualism and the Impact of the Views

  • Low motivation and resistance to learn Korean at KLS (3rd graders)

  • Strong motivation & positive environment to learn HL at Pine Grove Elementary

  • Learning how to respect heritage language and culture


Vi conclusion

VI. Conclusion

  • L1 program in public school

  • Collaborative effort between local KLS and public schools

  • Educating Korean parents and public school teachers


Maintaining korean heritage language in a midwest public elementary school

Thank You


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