Publication Date



In both multilingual and monolingual school settings, the manner in which teachers mediate classroom talk has a direct impact on the way that students are given access to curriculum content and the links established between thinking and learning. Classroom talk includes the ways in which teachers present content as well as the ways in which students interact with the subject matter that they are learning. However, in multilingual settings, the focus for educational language policy is commonly on which language rather than how to use the linguistic resources available in the classroom. This paper explores the case of Timor-Leste, a nation struggling to improve the poor learning outcomes for students within a multilingual setting, within a school system of poorly trained teachers and poorly resourced classrooms. It looks at oral language behaviours that teachers typically use in classrooms in order to suggest how teacher professional development priorities might be re-oriented around repertoires of classroom talk as a means of enhancing both curriculum content learning and language learning.


School of Education

Document Type

Journal Article

Access Rights

ERA Access

Access may be restricted.