[lg policy] New book on dual immersion education

Harold Schiffman haroldfs at GMAIL.COM
Thu Mar 8 15:15:27 UTC 2012

 Forwarded From: <lpren at caltalk.cal.org>
Date: Wed, Mar 7, 2012 at 1:22 AM

New book on dual immersion education

*Diary of a Bilingual School:
How a Constructivist Curriculum, a Multicultural Perspective, and a
Commitment to Dual Immersion Education Combined to Foster Fluent
Bilingualism in Spanish- and English-Speaking
By Sharon Adelman Reyes and James Crawford
DiversityLearningK12, © 2012, 136 pages, 6” x 9” Paperback: $19.95; ISBN:
978-0-9847317-0-1 / Amazon Kindle
www.diversitylearningk12.com <http://diversitylearningk12.com>

Dual immersion, also known as dual language or two-way bilingual education,
is recognized as a highly successful pedagogy. Superior levels of
bilingualism and biliteracy, academic achievement, and cross-cultural
awareness are among the outcomes documented not only for English learners
but for native English speakers as well.

Thus far, explanations of these successes have focused primarily on
linguistic factors – the sheltering of second-language input, transfer of
knowledge and skills between languages, peer tutoring by native speakers,
and so forth.

*Diary of a Bilingual School* highlights another advantage, usually
overlooked yet characteristic of many dual immersion programs:
constructivist teaching methods and strategies. Even in an era of
high-stakes testing and Common Core-style behaviorism, discovery learning
is thriving in many dual immersion classrooms. Why is this so?

Second-language acquisition is fundamentally a process of constructing
meaning from input in that language. Thus, to be effective, two-way models
tend to stress the active engagement of the learner, not only in teaching
language but in teaching academic subjects as well. Constructivism extends
naturally throughout the curriculum.

The book features Chicago’s Inter-American Magnet School, one of the
earliest and most renowned dual immersion programs, illustrating the
possibilities of a pedagogical approach that is both bilingual and
constructivist. It records a year in the life of a second-grade classroom,
combining daily narratives with analysis of what is working pedagogically.
A final section traces Inter-American graduates, now in their early 20s, to
report on how their lives are turning out.

Aimed at parents as well as educators, *Diary of a Bilingual School* offers
an immediate experience of dual immersion, explains its methods, and
elaborates reasons for choosing this educational option.

For more information, visit
http://www.diversitylearningk12.com/books.html#Diary or email
info at diversitylearningk12.com. To view sample chapters, click on


 Harold F. Schiffman

Professor Emeritus of
 Dravidian Linguistics and Culture
Dept. of South Asia Studies
University of Pennsylvania
Philadelphia, PA 19104-6305

Phone:  (215) 898-7475
Fax:  (215) 573-2138

Email:  haroldfs at gmail.com

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