Building Skills In Two Languages Overview This module highlights practices for teachers who are working with children who are dual language learners to: Teach new words and clear meanings. Have meaningful conversations.
Encourage childrens home languages in addition English development. By the end of this module, you should be able to: Teach dual language learners new vocabulary and clear meanings. Have conversations with dual language learners that build
language skills. Share ways to talk with families about continuing to use their home languages with their children. Intentional Teaching Framework What Is a Dual Language Learner? A child learning two
languages may: Learn the languages at the same time (often from birth). Develop a second language while learning a first language. Developing Two Languages at Once
Typical patterns: Birth up to 3 years Before a child has a vocabulary A simultaneous process of language development in both languages
Layering One on Top of the Other Usually children age 3 and older The way older children and adults learn concepts and languages New labels for existing concepts and words
Development Patterns Young children who start using a second language later may: Continue to use their home language. Learn that their home language isnt working and may observe. Begin using words and phrases in the new language. Begin to communicate in sentences.
Head Start Early Learning Outcomes Framework Supporting English and Home Languages Which Language for Teaching? Monolingual: Most early childhood teachers
speak one language wellEnglishand should model that with home language support. Bilingual: Teachers who speak the home language of the majority of the children in the program and English can teach in both languages with specific times for instruction in each language.
while all teachers cannot teach in all languages, they can support all languages by learning strategies to systematically introduce English during the preschool years while simultaneously promoting home language maintenance.
(Espinosa, 2013, p. 1) Meeting the Challenge Think about these questions while watching the video: Who can English-speaking teachers ask to help support home language development? What are strategies teachers
can use to encourage childrens home language development? VIDEO: Meeting the Challenge Video Debrief What did you notice? Teachers can ask families,
community members, and staff to support home languages. Strategies include posting labels and childrens names in two languages. In a bilingual program, teachers can use each language in intentional ways.
Why Encourage Home Languages? Language systems become more complex the longer a child uses a language. Children can use concepts learned in their home language to compare and contrast
new words. Ways to Support Home Languages Teachers who speak English can support home languages in their programs by: Learning key words in home languages Posting labels and including books in more than one language Working with staff, families, and
community volunteers who speak childrens home languages Benefits of Two Languages Cognitive flexibility Ability to develop relationships in two languages Strong ties with
community and culture Teaching New Words Process of Learning Vocabulary dog calceta
perro red Increase Breadth and Depth Children learning two languages may have: Large gaps in vocabulary
Less breadth (number of different words) and depth (knowledge of multiple meanings of the same word) Strategies for Teaching New Words Pre-teach vocabulary words. Create activities that encourage children
to use and express new words. Use pictures, real objects, and gestures with new words. Use childrens interests to support language development. Teach children to recognize similar words across languages. Meanings of Words
Create small groups of two to three people. Choose one of the photos on the next slide. Brainstorm possible words you could teach children related to the activities in the photo. Develop child-friendly definitions and strategies to teach them to
dual language learners. Having Meaningful Conversations Impact of Teacher Talk The amount, diversity, and complexity of teacher talk in preschool predicted
second language vocabulary skills in first grade. Conversation Basics Ask open-ended questions Observe, wait, listen Comment on the
childs interests Expand the childs comments Talking with Dual Language Learners During conversations: Repeat key words Adjust your
language to match a childs cues Provide scaffolding Model language The Need for Scaffolding The underlying principle for young DLLs (dual language learners) is that they need additional scaffolds and supports to
comprehend the meaning of lessons, because they are simultaneously learning the new language while also learning the cognitive and conceptual content. (Espinosa, 2012, p. 15) Encourage a Storytelling Format In addition to reading and telling stories,
use a storytelling approach to: Explain the days plans. Help children to describe what they plan to do or did. Interact at Different Stages
Child Teacher Using home language only Provide language modeling and parallel talk (describe what the child is doing and seeing), teach new words
Observing and silent or speaking less Continue language modeling and parallel talk, teaching new words, observe what the child is understanding Using key phrases in the
second language Continue modeling, parallel talk, new words, and observing, add more words to extend language Developing fluency in new language
Provide all of the above, adding more opportunities for child to express thoughts When Children Arent Talking Children who speak a home language and enter an English-speaking class may just observe and listen at first. Continue talking to those children. Describe what they are doing.
Interact with them even though they dont appear to understand. Demonstrate interest in their attempts to communicate. Boosting Language Birth to 3 Use a higherpitched voice. Exaggerate your expressions and
the sounds in the words you use. Repeat words or phrases over and over. Teachers who are Bilingual Can use both languages in the classroom as part of an intentional, balanced
approach. Should use one language at a time during instruction. Can switch languages in a discussion to support a specific, planned goal. Childrens Language Mixing Using elements of two languages
together Borrowing words from the dominant language and using them when talking in the nondominant one Response to Code Switching Answer in the
language you usually use with the children in your program. Example: If a child says, Quiero mas blocks, the teacher could hold up the choices and say, You want more cube-shaped or prism-shaped blocks? Conversation Dream
Think about these questions while watching the video: What effective practices does this teacher use during this conversation? How does the child respond? VIDEO: Conversation Dream
Video Debrief What did you notice? The teacher extends the conversation, repeating the childs words and adding more. She asks open-ended questions. She waits for answers. She scaffolds with hints.
She provides a new word and its meaning. What Did You Eat? Think about these questions while watching the video: What effective practices does this teacher use in these conversations?
How do the children respond? VIDEO: What Did You Eat? Video Debrief What did you notice? The teacher moves to the childs level and speaks warmly.
She responds with more exact words. She asks questions and waits for answers. She responds by repeating childrens words and adding more. Preparing for a Fire Drill Imagine you speak English and
have a new child in class who speaks only Mandarin. Your class is preparing for a fire drill. How could you have a conversation with that child to prepare him for the drill? What else could you do to help him understand and feel more comfortable?
Bringing It All Together Partnering with Families Support families in their goals for their children. Explain how learning the home language supports childrens English
development. One Scenario Read the handout and reflect on these questions: What did the staff learn and how did they learn it? What could the staff do to avoid this situation in the
future? Using Information from Families What you find out from families can help you: Create familiar situations for children and help them get their needs met. Provide new opportunities. Plan effective communication methods with families and children.
Connect in the classroom with a childs interests and abilities. Add information to a childs portfolio. Talking with Families Find a partner. Identify questions to ask families about language use and development and information
about the importance of home languages to share with families. Take turns playing the roles of the teacher and parents and asking questions and giving responses. Have rich interactions with dual language learners that match
their language development. Teach new vocabulary in ways that children learning more than one language can understand. Communicate regularly with families to effectively support English and home language development.
Talking with Children Learning Multiple Languages 1. Choose a child in your class to have a in-depth conversation with, and observe that child. 2. Make a plan to have an extended conversation using the planning form. 3. Have the conversation.
4. Write a reflection about the experience. Talking with Families 1. Choose a childs familyin consultation with other staffto talk with about language goals and development in English and home languages.
2. Get any needed permissions to film the conversation. 3. Make a plan to talk with the family and to record the conversation. 4. After you film the conversation, write a reflection by answering the questions in the assignment.
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