Creencias de las profesoras de la Fundación Íntegramente. Un primer acercamiento al contexto sociocultural de la enseñanza de castellano a los inmigrantes de Santa Coloma de Gramenet

Hermes Diáz Ceniceros

Abstract

The constant flow of immigrants to Catalonia from different parts of Africa, the Middle East and Asia has led to the creation of reception centres to help in integrating these immigrants socially. One such centre in the city of Barcelona is the Fundación Integrament in Santa Coloma de Gramenet. Here it became apparent that there was a need to give Spanish lessons to the immigrants with the help of volunteer teachers. This paper offers an initial exploration of the teaching provided in this centre, focusing on the teachers' belief systems.

The research method used is the ethnographic method and the tool for collecting data was the semi-open interview, involving four informants we will refer to as Zafo, Helena, Sofía and Tere. Each interview revolved around the following topics: how the profession of volunteer teacher ties in with the teacher's system of beliefs; how previous experience of L2 learning can help in preparing lessons; how multiculturalism is seen, and how the teachers identify with the pupils' problems.

In the interviews we found that the teachers' belief systems were largely determined by the profession. As for the experience of learning a second language, we found that this can be drawn on when professional beliefs allow it. We conclude by stressing the importance of continuing our ethnographic studies on teachers' and pupils' beliefs, with a view to developing suitable support material for these kinds of classes in the future.

Keywords

Immigrant pupils, volunteer teachers, belief systems, multiculturalism

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