From Borders to Bridges Conference  | 17 – 19 February 2024 

by the Educational Collaborative for International Schools, Multilingual International Education 

Contribution by Ms Beekhuizen & Ms Alkemade

During the February break, we had the privilege of attending the 3-day conference on multilingualism at the British Library, in London. We attended some excellent theoretical lectures and practical workshops facilitated by experts from around the world. We returned inspired with new ideas for our school.  
We also facilitated a two-hour workshop based on our practice and research at ISD primary. Our session was titled: Fostering Inclusivity and Academic Success: Play-Based Learning and Translanguaging in Multilingual Early Years and Primary Education. The session was over-subscribed and sparked animated discussions and questions, indicating extensive interest in this area of education, especially in international schools.  

Ms Irene and Ms Ingrid at the ECIS MLIE Conference, London – before giving their workshop. 

A point particularly relevant to parents and home-language communities and that remains at the forefront of research and education conversation, is the importance of continued home language development at home. Sharing your stories and culture in your home language supports your child’s identity and overall language development. A strong home language usually makes learning another language easier, as well as helping to understand another’s perspective. Multilingual children are so lucky to speak more than one language – it can be viewed as their ‘super-power’, as it helps them access another dimension of being in this world, hopefully making it a wiser place.