The purpose of this tool is to assist speakers of the language in assessing which people are bilingual and to what degree. A secondary purpose is to have them assess the changes that are occurring in bilingualism levels and their feelings about those changes.
- lots of rectangular slips of paper
- bold markers for writing
- long different coloured loops of string for each language
- lots of plastic markers
|1||What are the two languages the [L1] people speak the most? This loop will represent the [L1] people who speak [L1] well. This loop will represent the [L1] people who speak [LWC] well.||Lay the circles on the ground.|
|2||When I overlap the two circles like this, what does this area where they overlap represent?||Elicit that it represents [L1] people who speak both [L1] and LWC well.|
|3||Let’s think first about [L1] people who speak [LWC] well. Which types of [L1] people speak [LWC] well?||Have them write each category of people on a separate paper and place in the LWC circle.|
|4||Which [L1] people speak [L1] well, but do not speak [LWC] well?||Have them write the category names and place them in the correct location.|
|5||Which [L1] people speak both [L1] and [LWC] well?||They may need to move some categories. They may need to refine labels they have already written. If they said that young men speak the [LWC] well, they may want to clarify that young men living in the villages speak both well and the young men who were born in the towns only speak the [LWC].|
|6||We have some plastic pieces that you can use to show which papers represent many people. Place one of these plastic pieces on each paper that represents many people.||You may want to use another color to represent the papers that only represent very few people.|
|7||When we think about people in these three different categories, which category has the most [L1] people? How do you feel about that?||Usually the category with the most [L1] people will be the one with the most plastic pieces in it. Let them express their feelings or you could ask “What do you think?”|
|8||Is one of these three groups increasing more than the others? Why is that? How do you feel about that?||Let them express their feelings or thoughts.|
|9||Could someone please summarise our discussion?|
- In Step 3 you could ask them which group they'd like to discuss first.
- With non-literate communities, you could have very long ropes and then ask people to role-play each of the language communities by standing inside the ropes.
- consider whether this tool encourages the provision of expected answers from people
- in Step 8, watch that you understand exactly what feedback you get. It may be that you are expecting attitudes and in fact elicit beliefs.
- This tool is designed to elicit perceptions, feelings and attitudes. It does not aim to elicit reality. Take care when interpreting data that you realise this.
- This outline only deals with 2 languages. Some communities may use 5 or more. It is not clear how this tool could be adapted to such a community.
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