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?”

What is Critical Language Awareness (CLA)?

Teachers often wonder how appreciation for linguistic and cultural diversity can be fostered in schools. This is not just a “cultural show” issue, but comes down to teaching every student how to be respectful and inclusive, in and out of class, making school a place where racially, linguistically, and culturally minoritized students, some of whomContinue reading “What is Critical Language Awareness (CLA)?”

What do pre-service teachers need to know to teach linguistically diverse classes? Is it theoretical or practical?

An insightful study by Birello, Llompart-Esbert, & Moore (2021) shows that young people training to be primary or secondary teachers generally have positive attitudes towards multilingualism, living in the 21st century and knowing multiple languages to varying degrees. But when they start thinking about TEACHING, or picturing themselves in front of a linguistically diverse class,Continue reading “What do pre-service teachers need to know to teach linguistically diverse classes? Is it theoretical or practical?”

Is translanguaging compatible with indigenous language revitalization?

Translanguaging, code-switching/mixing/meshing, etc., versus a “target language only” zone: which is preferable for indigenous language revitalization? I think the answer depends on societal factors, which I illustrate in this post by contrasting two successful but very different cases of indigenous language teaching. The extent and nature of translanguaging (and other kinds of language-mixing) should beContinue reading “Is translanguaging compatible with indigenous language revitalization?”

How do elementary teachers perceive DYNAMIC translanguaging in storybooks?

This important study by al-Bataineh and Gallagher (2018) investigated elementary teachers’ attitudes towards dynamic translanguaging in print. (Read about the definition and historical development of dynamic translanguaging here.) This study fills a research gap because (1) teachers are relatively tolerant of dynamic translanguaging in oral speech, but not in print literacy, and (2) when translanguagingContinue reading “How do elementary teachers perceive DYNAMIC translanguaging in storybooks?”

The power of translingual writing used in everyday practical ways: LILIEMA

LILIEMA is a literacy program in Senegal’s Casamance region that uses grassroots strategies for teaching reading/writing in communities. People are taught to write in dominant languages’ writing systems extended to their entire repertoires, which allows them to write in societies where written resources are unavailable in the majority of languages. This overcomes the limits ofContinue reading “The power of translingual writing used in everyday practical ways: LILIEMA”

Translanguaging and Emotion

This post is an introductory chapter (for teacher education) on what translanguaging has to do with emotional well-being and ultimately with learning. I first review a cutting-edge academic paper on translanguaging and emotion (Dovchin, 2021), but since this blog is focused on K-12 education, I next review two classroom-based studies that show what translanguaging andContinue reading “Translanguaging and Emotion”

Bringing together translanguaging and Task Based Language Teaching (TBLT)

This study investigated the use of translanguaging and Task Based Language Teaching (TBLT) together in a secondary EFL class. The authors begin by summarizing research on translanguaging and TBLT, and discussing where the two theories of language teaching meet, comparing and contrasting their similarities/differences and concluding, overall, that they have many commonalities. Next, the authorsContinue reading “Bringing together translanguaging and Task Based Language Teaching (TBLT)”

Using translanguaging to teach vocabulary across the regional language, the national language, and English

In this week’s post, I summarize a single reading on pedagogical translanguaging for teaching vocabulary and morphological awareness across 3 languages. Why 3 languages? It is quite common for countries to have a three-level linguistic hierarchy: the regional/indigenous languages, the national language, and English. Therefore, this study by Leonet, Cenoz, and Gorter (2020) on howContinue reading “Using translanguaging to teach vocabulary across the regional language, the national language, and English”