When is it fair and valid to compare bi/multilinguals with monolinguals?

This is the question investigated by a team of 19 researchers in Norway, Spain, Germany, the U.K., the Netherlands, and the U.S. (Rothman et al., 2022), who wrote the commentary that I summarize in this post. A commentary is an essay with examples from empirical studies (“empirical studies” being articles with an Introduction, research Methods,Continue reading “When is it fair and valid to compare bi/multilinguals with monolinguals?”

What is translanguaging as “critical pedagogy” or “decolonizing research”?

In this week’s post, I aim to answer the question, “What does it mean when translanguaging is said to be a ‘critical pedagogy’ or ‘decolonizing research approach’?” This question is answered in recent commentaries by Pramod K. Sah (in collaboration with critical English language teaching scholar Ryuko Kubota) and Prem Phyak. According to Sah, toContinue reading “What is translanguaging as “critical pedagogy” or “decolonizing research”?”

Code-switching researchers comment on how translanguaging achieves its social aims

In this research-oriented post, I summarize a new book chapter (Bhatt & Bolonyai, 2022) in which code-switching researchers argue that bi/multilingual people accomplish things in the social world by recognizing codes, not rejecting them. In the authors’ view, code-switching is still a preferable term to translanguaging because the social affordances of translanguaging (such as creativeContinue reading “Code-switching researchers comment on how translanguaging achieves its social aims”

What’s it like to grow up bilingual from birth?

In this week’s post, I summarize a book chapter by Fred Genesee, a leader in the field of “simultaneous bilingualism,” or bilingualism of kids who are raised bilingual from birth (compared to “sequential bilingualism,” or kids who only start to become bilingual when they start school). Genesee shares some generally known knowledge about simultaneous bilingualism,Continue reading “What’s it like to grow up bilingual from birth?”

Translanguaging and transformative pedagogy (Part 2): Jim Cummins writes about “Teachers as knowledge generators”

In Part 1, I discussed how Jim Cummins defines “transformative pedagogy” (Cummins, 2000) as collaborative relations of power between teachers and students, policymakers, curriculum designers, administrators, parents, communities, and academic researchers when they combine social justice with genuine concern for learning. In this post, I summarize Cummins’ (2021) more recent book chapter on what translanguagingContinue reading “Translanguaging and transformative pedagogy (Part 2): Jim Cummins writes about “Teachers as knowledge generators””

Translanguaging and transformative pedagogy (Part 1): Jim Cummins defines “transformative pedagogy”

Welcome to the two-part series about translanguaging (TL) and transformative pedagogy (TP)! In this post, I summarize Jim Cummins’ (2000) book chapter on what transformative pedagogy is—a no bullshit piece, and despite most of the examples being from the U.S., the principles are important for teachers to know, at any level of education, anywhere inContinue reading “Translanguaging and transformative pedagogy (Part 1): Jim Cummins defines “transformative pedagogy””

Translanguaging research by/with/for teachers: How might it ideally be done?

This week’s post summarizes what may be the oldest article I’ve ever summarized on the blog: “Research on Teaching and Teacher Research: The Issues that Divide” (Cochran-Smith & Lytle, 1990). What strikes me about this article is that 30+ years on, nothing has changed! Here, I summarize this short 10-page paper about research in primaryContinue reading “Translanguaging research by/with/for teachers: How might it ideally be done?”

What does “judicious” use of students’ “own language” in language classrooms look like, practically speaking?

Graham Hall and Guy Cook are two experts on “own language use” in language teaching and learning who wrote a state-of-the-art article about this subject in 2013 that answers the above million-dollar question. In this week’s post, I summarize that article’s six sections: (1) what academic and societal trends have led to more support forContinue reading “What does “judicious” use of students’ “own language” in language classrooms look like, practically speaking?”

Once again, what are “translanguaging” and “code-switching” (within and beyond the classroom)?

The purpose of this definition post is to explain (1) the difference between translanguaging and code-switching as sociolinguistic phenomena, or phenomena observed by sociolinguists (people who study language use in interaction), and (2) how translanguaging/code-switching are understood in classroom pedagogy, which is different from how they are understood as sociolinguistic phenomena. The first question isContinue reading “Once again, what are “translanguaging” and “code-switching” (within and beyond the classroom)?”

Translanguaging in language immersion classrooms: To what extent can it be done?

In this week’s post, I summarize an article about the extent to which translanguaging/code-switching/first language (L1) use is appropriate for language immersion classrooms (Ballinger, Lyster, Sterzuk, & Genesee, 2017). The article is by Canadian scholars—as the early immersion research from French immersion in Canada is often cited today by proponents of other types of immersion,Continue reading “Translanguaging in language immersion classrooms: To what extent can it be done?”