Negotiating and constructing a reflexive multiliteracies pedagogy in a Greek complementary school in London

Charalambous, Maria. 2019. Negotiating and constructing a reflexive multiliteracies pedagogy in a Greek complementary school in London. Doctoral thesis, Goldsmiths, University of London [Thesis]

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Abstract or Description

Research into a multiliteracies pedagogy has become an area of increasing interest in educational settings in the UK and around the world (Giampapa, 2010; Anderson and Macleroy, 2016). Nevertheless, a reflexive multiliteracies pedagogy (Cope and Kalantzis, 2015), which puts the emphasis on the role of the teacher’s reflexivity to leverage on diversity and endorse both multilingualism and multimodality in the curriculum, remains underexplored. To this end, the present study investigates the negotiation and construction of a reflexive multiliteracies pedagogy in a context of increasing diversity, a London Greek Complementary school.

The study takes a collaborative case study approach and uses ethnographic tools to focus on the pedagogic practices of a class of pre-adolescent students and their teacher. Conceptually, the study employs the reflexive multiliteracies pedagogical framework (Cope and Kalantzis, 2015) to explore the knowledge processes of experiencing, conceptualising, analysing and applying, and weavings between them. It illustrates how students deploy these knowledge processes and capitalise with the teacher’s support on their multicultural and multilingual practices, including translanguaging (García and Wei, 2014). In this respect, it highlights criticality and creativity as part of the knowledge processes of analysing and applying and examines the students’ creative text-making in terms of ‘cultural weavings’ (Cazden, 2006a; Luke, 2003) and ‘identity texts’ (Cummins and Early, 2011).

The study extends our understandings of the pedagogic potential of a reflexive multiliteracies framework in the complementary school context. It demonstrates how teachers by being reflexive and attentive to their students’ diversity, can orchestrate pedagogical activities to develop heritage language learning as well as metalinguistic awareness and multicompetence (Cook, 2008; Wei, 2011). It also illustrates how through their text-making, students reproduce but also contest dominant understandings of the heritage language and culture and ‘invest’ themselves (Cummins, 2005a; 2005b) in their learning.

Item Type:

Thesis (Doctoral)

Identification Number (DOI):


reflexive multiliteracies, multilingualism, heritage language education, complementary schools, identity negotiation, knowledge processes

Departments, Centres and Research Units:

Educational Studies


30 April 2019

Item ID:


Date Deposited:

06 Jun 2019 13:57

Last Modified:

30 Apr 2024 01:26


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