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English has taken on a new life as the lingua franca – language that is used for wider communication (Heugh, 2013 ) by people who speak different languages. English has become the main medium of education globally, and the workplace of today demands proficiency in English. The real world, aside from demands of the economy consists of a diversity of languages and cultures, which are important to preserve and develop for the diversity of social life to thrive. One of the main causes of change in language use in today’s world is the increasing role played by digital media in everyday life of modern men and women. With increasing digitisation, communication has been revolutionised for modern man, and since language is the main medium of communication, it follows that language use has been revolutionised with digitisation.
Trans-languaging is a new phenomenon in teaching languages in multilingual classrooms that is a step above bilingualism. Trans-languaging promises exciting results in developing students not only in language skills but also in social, emotional and cultural aspects (Heugh, 2013 ). Translanguaging is an ideological shift in pedagogic theory and practises that moves away from bi-lingual outcomes in learning to bi-lingual processes and stresses that the very nature of bi-linguals thinking, understanding and achievement is in the two languages that he or she uses (Lewis, Jones, & Baker, 2012).
Translanguaging is an ideological shift in linguistics that has revolutionised learning situations by empowering native speakers of other languages in the classroom. Translanguaging has brought more power and life into teaching in the classroom by being a truer representation of language use in the real world, more dynamic and democratic and by doing away with the separation between languages that were present in the bilingual classrooms. Translanguaging has acknowledged that emergent bilingual students do not acquire an additional language separately, but they develop new language practises by building a complex dynamic bilingual vocabulary. Translanguaging is a supportive context as well as the communicative web itself and more comprehensive than bi-lingual pedagogical practises and supports the learner’s language achievement and learning in a more dynamic way (Garcıa, 2009). Translanguaging attempts to utilise and strengthen both the languages used by the learner (Lewis, Jones, & Baker, 2012).