Metalanguaging matters: multilingual children engaging with ”The Meta”

Publikation: Bidrag til tidsskrift/Konferencebidrag i tidsskrift /Bidrag til avisTidsskriftartikelForskningpeer review


  • Helle Pia Laursen
  • Line Møller Daugaard, VIA UC, Danmark
  • Uffe Ladegaard
  • ,
  • Winnie Østergaard, UCN, Danmark
  • Birgit Orluf, UC Lillebælt, Danmark
  • Lone Wulff, UCC, Danmark
In this article, we build on empirical data from the ongoing longitudinal research project Signs of language (2008 – 2018) to examine how multilingual children in a primary school setting use metalinguistic resources linked to several written languages. Grounded in social semiotics (Hodge and Kress, 1988) and drawing on newer social perspectives on metalanguage (Jaworski, Coupland and Galasínki, 2004), we focus on a researcher-generated activity designed to invite the children to reflect on language and literacy. In two particular interactions, we explore how the children ”engage with the meta” by navigating between different languages and sign systems, and how their use of metalinguistic resources in a referential sense is inextricably linked to a dialogically formed and performative negotiation of social identity and social relations. Thus, adopting a metalanguaging perspective, this article demonstrates how metalinguistic statements about language are closely interwoven with an ongoing production and negotiation of the communicative situation.
TidsskriftInternational Journal of Bias, Identity and Diversities in Education (IJBIDE)
Sider (fra-til)22-39
Antal sider18
StatusUdgivet - 2018


  • Social semiotics, Metalanguage, Literacy, Multilingualism, Metalinguistic resources, Dansk som 2. sprog, Dansk/læse/skrive, Sprog

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