Beyond boundaries in Foreign Language Learning: Learning Attitudes attached to Gender Equality

Gender Equality is considered a cross-curricular topic in the educational system of Spain. Its treatment is regulated by a set of plans and programmes which fosters equality in education. This paper introduces a social topic in foreign language learning through a Project-Based Learning. This approach is focused on topics close to social and civic attitudes, active use of new technologies and the importance of developing critical thinking (Puchta and Williams, 2011). Gender Equality implies a lifestyle and a commitment with society. Then, students become active learners and thinkers with an active participation along the teaching-learning process. This involves a learner-centred approach as well. So, firstly, PBL takes students as the centre of learning, so their interests and participation are actively promoted what means attention to diversity (Mitchell and  Sutherland, 2020). Secondly, planning a challenging question as main guide of the project implies to gain a variety of knowledge and skills from active listening to communication, then engament is the main advantage of a PBL method regarding Gender Equality.  The PBL is usually guided by a complex and challenging question  that students respond with the help of the teacher and classmates, then students gain cooperative skills and knowledge (Bransford & Stein, 1993). Consequently, this paper aims at research questions as follows:1.How to gain students’ knowledge and skills with a topic close to  their interests based on Gender Equality? 2.How to engage students to respond to a challenging question and gain advantages of a Project-Based Learning regarding Gender Equality? Therefore, the main advantages of PBL stay in developing the zone of proximal development stated by Vygostky (1983). Also, in order to respond how to engage students in a PBL regarding Gender Equality is working cooperatively to answer a challeging problem close to their reality, then students’ engagement towards the English lesson improves when we deal with gender equality topics in the school context. It is considered that a positive  attitude towards gender equality provides a committed behaviour. Therefore, this paper consists of a learning proposal to go beyond foreign language learning with a gender equality topic in Primary Education. Consequently, planning  gender topics to develop critical thinking in early stages of education allows eliminating gender bias. Therefore, this paper deals with Gender Equaility in Foreign Language through a Project Based Learning. Then, this is a learning proposal to adjust children’s attitudes towards a gender equaility view and modifiy gender attitudes regarding its cognitive, affective and behaviour component in favour of equality.

Palabras clave

Attitudes Critical Thinking Foreign language Learning Gender Equality

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Isabel Núñez Vázquez

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      Sergio Yagüe-Pasamón

      Comentó el 20/05/2021 a las 08:45:01

      Dear Isabel,
      Thank you for your interesting videopresentation. In your talk, you deal with the collateral acquisition of gender-based attitudes in the process of Foreign Language Project-based learning. Coming to the basics of communication, do you believe that language in inherently sexist? If so, how does sexism systematically manifest in speakers' linguistic production? Thank you in advance for your attention.


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        Isabel Núñez Vázquez

        Comentó el 21/05/2021 a las 21:11:31

        Dear Sergio,
        as a researcher of linguistic attitudes and learning, I do not think language is sexist but when we talk about language we cover verbal and non-verbal inputs being the nonverbal ones the most important elements of sexism. Then, we try with the paper to go beyond the linguistic competence of a FL by learning attitudes and breaking gender bias with topics of social demand. Thanks for your interest in the paper, hope u find interesting


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