Bilingual is Better

What Happens Inside a Dual-Language Middle School Classroom?

 

La Maestra's Corner dual language immersion

Last week, I gave Spanglishbaby readers the opportunity to take a special peek into a kindergarten classroom at a dual-language school. I received many great emails from parent to teachers – THANK YOU for all your questions and comments. I also got quite a few requests asking me about dual-language in the upper grades (not just 4th or 5th grade, but beyond). I am excited to be able to share with all of you great insights as well as amazing images about the work that takes place in this middle school with a dual language program (6th, 7th, and 8th).

First, and as it happened in the kinder classroom, images were everywhere. These images support the more sophisticated vocabulary work that takes place in the upper grades. I was pleased to see how illustrations were present in science, literature, math, as well as social studies. There is great emphasis on vocabulary instruction and this was reflected on the work that I saw posted on many of the walls.

What Happens Inside a Dual-Language Middle School Classroom?

Second, one has to remember that students are not only speaking and reading in another language but they are also writing. This is no small task as both oral and written fluency are clear expectations. As a Spanish native speaker myself, I can recall how difficult it was to write in both languages at the beginning, but these young adults do it marvelously. I captured a couple of images of a sixth grade class that had just published personal narratives (narrativas personales en español). I was really moved by many of the topics several students selected and how well developed their stories were.

What Happens Inside a Dual-Language Middle School Classroom?

What Happens Inside a Dual-Language Middle School Classroom?

What Happens Inside a Dual-Language Middle School Classroom?

Third, and as I had mentioned on previous posts, children would rather read and write in English than in any other language (here in the U.S). Here comes the balancing act that teachers educating in these types of programs have to do: How much reading and how much writing will be done in each language since resources are very hard to come by? (Spanish resources that are well-written that is).

What Happens Inside a Dual-Language Middle School Classroom?

What Happens Inside a Dual-Language Middle School Classroom?

What Happens Inside a Dual-Language Middle School Classroom?

What Happens Inside a Dual-Language Middle School Classroom?

What Happens Inside a Dual-Language Middle School Classroom?

It really takes commitment from both family members and teachers to help children continue developing their academic skills in more than one language. I am content to see that there is an increasing trend when it comes to speaking more than one language. Therefore readers: Do you have an older child attending a dual language program? Do you teach your older child/children to be biliterate/bilingual? How do you do it and what resources do you use? I love to hear from you and the great things you do.

Abrazos,

Kelly

{Photos courtesy of MLC Middle School}

Recent Posts