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This programme looks at two primary schools in Wales in order to examine the issues behind language development when it takes place in a bi-lingual situation. He also looks at the evidence the relationship between bi-lingualism and cognitive development.
Metadata describing this Open University video programme
Module code and title: E362, Cognitive development: language and thinking - birth to adolescence
Item code: E362; 07
First transmission date: 06-07-1979
Published: 1979
Rights Statement:
Restrictions on use:
Duration: 00:24:06
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Producer: Richard Argent
Contributors: Tecwyn Ellis; Victor Lee
Publisher: BBC Open University
Keyword(s): Bangor; Bi-linguals; Caernarfon; Carl Dodson; Dafydd Iwan; Deganwy Primary School; Enlish; Glencaevern; Glynllifon; Gwynedd; Language; Llandudno; Residential courses; Ysgot yr Garnedd
Footage description: The programme opens with film of a teacher taking a primary school lesson in both Welsh and English. In voice over Vic Lee briefly describes past repression in Welsh schools and then comments on the rise of Welsh classes in the anglicised parts of Gwynnedd in North Wales. Further shots of the primary school lesson. Shots of the exterior of a medieval castle in Gwynnedd, then film of the Welsh countryside. Over this Lee describes the effects unification with England had on the Welsh language. A map shows the area inhabited by Welsh-speakers in 1750. Film of children playing in a school ground, then stills of Matthew Arnold and late nineteenth century classroom scenes. Over all this Lee describes Victorian efforts to ban Welsh from schools and quotes the anti-Welsh of certain prominent Englishmen. Film of a service conducted in Welsh. Lee describes the decline of Welsh over maps showing the extent of Welsh-speaking areas in 1850, 1900 and 1971. Film showing the activities of the Welsh Language Society in the 1960's: chiefly demonstrations and damage to road signs. Lee describes some successes of the society. Interview with Dafydd Iwan, prominent member of the Welsh Language Society and a director of Sain, a company which produces records in Welsh. Iwan explains why the Welsh language is so important to his generation. Brief shots of Gwynnedd Education Department where Tecwyn Ellis, the county's director of education, is interviewed. He describes the policy to make every child in the county bilingual. Shots of Deganwy Primary School in Gwynnedd, where lessons are seen being conducted in both English and Welsh. In voice-over Lee describes the school's participation in the Schools Council Bilingual Education Project, which aims to turn English-speaking 5-year olds into bilingual 11-year olds. Lee interviews Carl Dodson, the official evaluator of the project. Dodson explains the aims of the project, which include investigation of how Welsh affects general cognitive development in primary schoolchildren. He out-lines the result of the project, giving reasons for both its successes and its failures. He also relates his findings to the results of other research Into the effects of bilingualism on cognitive development. Film of a music lesson conducted in English. The teacher reads a story which the children illustrate with musical sounds. In voice-over Lee explains that this is one of the subjects taught only in English. Film of activities at Glencaevern near Caernarvon, where residential courses are given to help children from English-speaking backgrounds. Film taken at Ysgot yr Garnedd, a primary school near Bangor where most children have Welsh as their first Language. A lesson is seen being conducted in Welsh then teacher and pupils switch to English. Lee comments on the advantages of being bilingual. Shots of Welsh farms and villages over which Lee describes how the growth of holiday homes has affected rural areas in Wales. In interview Tecwyn Ellis comments on the lack of 'O' and 'A' level courses being taught in Welsh, and describes the steps Gwynnedd is t;aking to remedy this. Lee concludes with remarks on the need for bilingual education in Wales.
Production number: FOUE013Y
Videofinder number: 4333
Available to public: no