Due to globalization and migration, multilingualism has become both a reality and an aim of education globally of which Ghana is not exempted. However, the aim for multilingualism can best be achieved when all stakeholders are technologically inclined. Thus, the theme chosen to mark this year’s event is not only appropriate but befitting for social discourse.
For the sustenance of our culture (language) as a country, there is the need for multilingualism in our educational system despite the prevalence of one nation, one language. Technology has equipped both learners and teachers in communicating in both oral and written forms through countless learning applications such as zoom, duolingo, memrise, google classroom among others. An evident display of technology was clearly experienced at the interim stages of COVID19 as most learners were engaged on virtual applications globally.
Therefore, there is an urgent need to enhance the role of teachers in promoting quality multilingual education. Facilitators in the educational industry must receive professional training periodically to enhance their language skills. Additionally, teachers must engage learners in communicative language activities to revive their reading, writing and speaking skills for eloquence and fluency in the various languages.
Albeit the need for technological advancement amidst multilingualism, technology poses some challenges to teaching and learning in our educational industry. The use of technological tool as a medium of communication and learning may pose threat on the behavioral characters of some learners as they will gratuitously surf the internet and associate with ignoble individuals. Technology may also incur additional cost for data usage by both learners and teachers. Finally, the instability in the internet connectivity due to its limited coverage nationwide will leave some learners and teachers handicapped and deprive them of receiving adequate information for teaching and learning. The use of technology for integrated learning and teaching of languages in Ghana will help to enhance the educational system as language is the main instructional tool in all schools. As Ghanaians, let us all embrace the technological tools for learning the various languages to connect us to job opportunities and business contracts through effect communication around the globe. As David Warlick opines, “we need technology in every classroom and in every student and teacher’s hand, because it is the pen and paper of our time and it is the lens through which we experience much of our world.” With a sober reflection on the above quote, the National Commission on Culture admonishes all stakeholders especially the Education industry to help promote multilingual learning by furnishing educational institutions with technological tools for learning and inculcating the multilingual study in the curricula.
As today earmarks the International Mother Language Day, we are making a clarion call to all Ghanaians to go for their cultural heritage which is their mother language and speak it as it is an element for cultural identity.
For further information, Contact firstname.lastname@example.org, NCC, PRME Directorate.
Happy International Mother Language Day.