Bilingual question for grad class

Discussion in 'General Education Archives' started by mikewalter, Aug 24, 2002.

  1. mikewalter

    mikewalter Rookie

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    Aug 24, 2002

    I have to deal with the following scenario in a graduate class I'm taking. I'm not looking for someone to do the work for me, I would just like to get some ideas.

    An imaginary school system with 35% Spanish speaking enrollment has been told that it MUST discontinue its bilingual program. Somehow these students must be served. I have to propose how to serve a middle school language arts class in this situation. Assume that 35% of these students speak little English.

    In this scenario, I have some clout because I am the director of student services for the school district.

    What would you do?
     
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  3. mommaruthie

    mommaruthie Aficionado

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    Aug 25, 2002

    Sounds like you need a very tactile pictoral program. One that has english and spanish labels. If you look into the montessori three part card concept, you can create a fourth card which is the spanish word for the object. i guess you need a strong technology filled room too. Headsets for listening to stories in spanish/english. Language master machines for them to hear the correct word pronunciation. good luck
     
  4. Maxine

    Maxine Companion

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    Aug 25, 2002

    Having substituted in some bilingual classes in New Bedford, Massachusetts, I came away with the distinct impression that these students wanted to belong to mainstream America without losing their pride in their own traditions. This assimilation process has been going on for a long time among many cultures which enter our country. Why is there such a difficulty with spanish? I know and have taught Portugese immigrant children who couldn't become American fast enough, but who also greatly respected their elders for whom they had to translate in the new world. By mainstreaming the students, you can see them as individual children with a unique family life and cultural adaptation problems. So, use their own desires to motivate them. Ask them what they want to do, and if you get the response that they would like to become gang menbers, your battle is lost. But, if they want to become what they define as a "real American," then you can say, well, study this to be able to do this profession. Practice this to create beautiful music like Selena. Learn the accounting practices and play stock market games with the newspaper to get them to become good capitalists and entreprenuers. There should be NO distinction between what girls can become and what boys can become. This is an important hurdle to leap in the spanish culture. Working with psychology and motivation could address identity and the students not having to proove anything, but to just live and be loved. That is enough for any person to achieve.
     

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