Divided as we are by our distinct languages and cultures, we do share a common concern: the quality of the teaching and learning of mother tongues.
Throughout the world, education systems are confronted with major challenges. Societal demands for literacy and communicative competence are growing, and at the same time, there is an increase in the cultural and linguistic heterogeneity of school populations.
In response to these trends, studies in the learning and teaching of mother tongues are done in many countries ... in splendid isolation.
A pity, for national work in the improvement of language education can profit
enormously from international exchange.
Creating an international network of national and regional associations of mother-tongue associations.
Building a network of specialists in mother-tongue education.
Encouraging good mother tongue teaching and learning on a sound international basis.
Improving the learning and teaching of mother tongues.
ARLE deals with the common issues of the teaching of French in France and Belgium to Francophones, English in the United Kingdom and Hong Kong to Anglophones and Spanish in Spain and Argentina to ‘Hispanophones’.
The ARLE tries to promote theoretically grounded and empirically informed educational improvement. Although the key word Mother Tongue Education in the ARLE bears manifold associations, it seems that the message was heard: the ARLE deals with the teaching of the mainstream language (French in France, Spanish in Spain) and of minority languages like Catalonian in Catalonia (region in Spain).
We try to connect those involved in the teaching and learning of language and literature from different countries and regions. Our basic belief is that L1 teachers in both primary and secondary education who teach language, literature and culture have a lot in common from a methodological perspective. Teaching writing in language X in Country X has a lot in common with teaching writing in language Y in country Y. The only (sic!) essential difference is the language and culture.