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MultiLila recommendations


  • Using children's home language(s) in the classroom improves their learning and development of social value.
  • All schools in India have multilingual learners.  Teachers need training in how to use multilingual approaches to teach students concepts in different subject areas and to support them to learn new language(s).
  • Using everyday language to explain mathematics and other academic concepts can aid understanding and learning.
  • Children should be encouraged to communicate their understanding in their preferred or strongest language(s), so that any lack of proficiency in the stated medium of instruction does not impede learning of key concepts.
  • School systems need to recognise the resilience that children from disadvantaged contexts develop.  It is important to build classroom practices on the strengths of the urban and rural poor – including their specific cognitive (e.g. multilingual and applied mathematical knowledge) and metacognitive (awareness of this knowledge) skills.
  • Decisions around language use in the classroom cannot be separated from classroom practices that encourage and support learning for all – appropriate language use and effective teaching strategies are equally important.
  • Teachers can use storytelling techniques in multiple languages.  This uses learners' multilingual resources and develops a deeper level of conceptual engagement and social cognition.  This can support children to be proficient multilingual users for academic purposes, generating knowledge and enabling the application of ideas.