Pub. date: 2009 | Online Pub. Date: December 16, 2008 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412963992 | Print ISBN: 9781412906784 | Online ISBN: 9781412963992| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Foreign Language Instruction
Annis N. Shaver
According to Old Testament accounts, the building of the Tower of Babel was the first instance of multilin-gualism. If this is indeed the occasion when humans began using more than one language, then this must also be the beginning point for the need for foreign language instruction. There are three terms used for language instruction. It is important to clarify the differences between bilingual education, second language instruction, and foreign language instruction. Bilingual education takes place in schools and requires that children be taught all subjects in two target languages, in order to allow each child to reach equal fluency in the languages. Although bilingual education is currently the focus of educators, it is not a new concept, as subjects other than language were taught in the student's second language as early as the Middle Ages. Second language instruction occurs when the learner must reach a high degree of of ...