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Education Research International
Volume 2014 (2014), Article ID 538437, 9 pages
Research Article

Rethinking Foreign Language Education in Tunisian Preschools

Higher Institute for Childhood Education, University of Carthage, 26 Avenue Taïeb Mhiri, Carthage Dermech, 2016 Tunis, Tunisia

Received 14 May 2014; Revised 13 August 2014; Accepted 13 August 2014; Published 26 August 2014

Academic Editor: Phillip J. Belfiore

Copyright © 2014 Mohamed Ridha Ben Maad. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Since its institutionalization three decades ago, early childhood educator training in Tunisia has been a considerable tributary of mainstream education. Despite such bearing, this field does not yet seem to reach the expected evolution as evidenced by the lack of a guiding vision. A case in point that attests to this state of clarity is foreign language education which has not expediently addressed the needs of both educators and preschoolers. This paper underscores this overlooked strand of early childhood education. Building on an appraisal of the problems and challenges burdening this area of education, it suggests the awakening-to-languages approach as an alternative project that maps the future course of foreign language education. Possible related benefits will consist in (i) investing in identity building, (ii) fostering critical thinking, and (iii) developing metalinguistic awareness where young learners act according to a pedagogy of discovery and reflection rather than skill-based attainment.