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Linguistic landscaping

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Abstract

This paper will examine the uses of linguistic landscapes as a pedagogical tool in the fields of multilingualism and foreign language teaching and learning. In line with an increasing interest in sociolinguistic research of linguistically and culturally diverse communities, linguistic landscaping emerged as a methodological paradigm for the study of multilingualism in society. In particular, the field opened up towards the study of educational spaces and schools. In that respect, linguistic landscaping evolves into an educational tool to increase students’ awareness of both linguistically diverse classrooms as well as societal multilingualism as a whole. Based on recent research findings, this paper argues that LLs can contribute significantly to develop literacy skills, improve pragmatic competence, increase the possibility of incidental language learning, help in the acquisition of multimodal literacy skills, and enhance sensitivity to connotational aspects of language. Furthermore, I will argue that research in linguistic landscaping opens up the potential to transform students into sociolinguists, critically reflecting on multilingual practices both in school and beyond.