The curriculum for mother tongue teaching for language minorities may be used in primary and lower secondary school and in upper secondary education and training. The teaching based on this curriculum and on the curriculum for basic Norwegian is meant to promote adapted education in accordance with current regulations in the Education Act. The school owner / the school decides whether mother tongue teaching in accordance with the curriculum for mother tongue teaching for language minorities shall be included in the special Norwegian instruction.
The Education Act, section 2-8 (for the 10-year compulsory school) and section 3-12 (upper secondary education and training), states that pupils whose mother tongue is other than Norwegian or Sámi are entitled to special training in Norwegian until they are proficient enough in Norwegian to follow the regular school teaching. If necessary, such pupils are also entitled to mother tongue teaching, bilingual technical training, or both.
It follows from the premise for mother tongue teaching that the curriculum for mother tongue teaching for language minorities is a transitional plan, one that shall be used only until pupils are able to follow the teaching in accordance with the regular curriculum in Norwegian. The curriculum is level-oriented and not related to age and applies to pupils of different ages and with different experience backgrounds. Before the teaching begins, a decision shall be made for each pupil as to what level in the curriculum the teaching shall serve as a starting point.
The main goal of the teaching is to strengthen pupils’ qualifications for gaining a command of the Norwegian language and thus enhance their learning options through the development of fundamental reading and writing skills, vocabulary and comprehension of terms and concepts in their mother tongue.
Intercultural understanding and the development of linguistic self-confidence are key aspects of the teaching. This can contribute to the development of a bilingual identity and a comparative perspective in Norwegian and the pupil’s mother tongue. Furthermore, the teaching is intended to help develop sound learning strategies and promote insight into the pupils’s own language learning.
In cases where the mother tongue in question is not a written language, it may nevertheless be used to support the teaching in reading and writing in Norwegian.
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