Taaltrotters Abroad

The European website of the project
can be found on www.taaltrotters.eu

The Project

Taaltrotters Abroad is an educational multimedia project for pupils from 12 to 16 years old, about language awareness, multilingualism and linguistic diversity. It is the European adaptation of the successful predecessor developed for the Netherlands and Flanders in 2002.

Taaltrotters challenges the pupil to look into his own linguistic identity. It shows that language is fun, and that crossing linguistic barriers is exciting. Pupils become more conscious language users. Their sensitivity towards languages grows.
Taaltrotters contributes to integration in school and in the classroom. The pupils discover that they can learn from their classmates' language and culture. They develop an awareness of linguistic diversity, sociolinguistic aspects of languages and multilingualism in Europe.

Taaltrotters Abroad consists of an interactive movie on CD-Rom, a booklet and a website with assignments, linguistic information, teacher information and frameworks for linguistic exchanges at an inter(national) school level. The project is developed by academics and multimedia experts. Versions of the materials are developed in German, Finnish and Swedish, and are validated in about 80 schools.

The movie is a highly attractive interactive Flash animation with young actors of different ethnic backgrounds who are streetwise, use modern communicational technologies, and who live in a multilingual, globalized world.

The focus of Taaltrotters is on all, if not most, of the languages spoken in the countries involved: from the mother tongue to dialects, from neighbouring state languages to the languages of immigrants, from the Lingua Franca of the world to the half secret languages of peer groups. Taaltrotters Abroad does not only promote language learning and linguistic diversity, but also contributes to more social cohesion and to the lowering down of xenophobia. The European societies so highly characterised by the need to invest in intercultural exchange benefit from multi-linguistic knowledge. Linguistic reflection, based on action theoretic approaches as embraced by Taaltrotters, favours the communication between people with different linguistic and cultural backgrounds.

Taaltrotters on Tour

Since March 2002 the Taaltrotters movie has ‘trotted' through the Netherlands and Flanders, in museums in Amsterdam, Tilburg, The Hague, Rotterdam, Utrecht, Purmerend, Leeuwarden, Sittard and Brussels.