Language Immersion Summary

Category: Education

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Language Immersion Discussion Notes : 

Language Immersion Discussion Notes for WAFLT Conference March 20, 2004 Compiled by Michele Anciaux Aoki, Ph.D. Washington State Coalition for International Education

Reading and Writing: 

Reading and Writing Challenges Communicating original thoughts Making print available around the room Acquiring native language in addition to target language (confusion) Decoding Japanese to get to comprehension (not just decoding) Higher age developmentally but target language too difficult Time to adapt materials Preparing and scheduling time to prepare for standardized tests Teachers at Sheridan are teaching all subjects (in both languages)

Reading and Writing: 

Reading and Writing Challenges (cont.) Frustration – to speak only target language the whole time or both languages Japanese – Writing first, Reading second Romance – Reading first, Writing second Neighborhood schools which include students who are not native speakers of English either Discipline problems with kids who have no motivation (can they be moved?) No specific scheduling division between native and target language instruction Following District curriculum when it’s in another language Not having extra IA’s, volunteers Grammar – when to teach, how (without a curriculum)?

Reading and Writing: 

Reading and Writing What we can do Parents need to become involved, need outside help Provide as many opportunities for labeling, print in target language Repetition, hands-on, TPR, conversation Have students write about their conversations Motivation in target language overcomes Special Education needs Half in target language, half in native language – introduce concept in target, drill/practice in native; assessment in native

Reading and Writing: 

Reading and Writing What we can do (cont.) Start teaching grammar right away so kids “understand” the language Provide opportunities for dialogue about relevant issues Homework in native language Good relationship with kids = key to motivation Make compromises LISTEN

Extended Student Output: 

Extended Student Output Challenges How to use the immersion language more Japanese language structures are difficult What we can do Ask students to speak in complete sentences Use circumlocution Teatro (Theater) and Role Play Ask questions the right way to prompt them Teacher models “academic language” by overtly expressing his/her thinking while problem solving or processing information in a content area Say some sentences only in the immersion language

Social Studies: 

Social Studies Challenges Teaching EALRs in target language (elementary school) Accommodation to the required Social Studies textbook in English (middle school) Accommodation to WASL/ITBS (standardized tests in English) Students’ ability vs. requirements in immersion situation One teacher  two languages Too many native speakers

Social Studies: 

Social Studies What we can do Use English materials to teach targeted language Flip-flop between English and Japanese (introduce in English, review content in Japanese) Lots of manipulatives and visual aids (maps, globes, etc.) Grants to support creation of materials or “just right” translations

Math and Science: 

Math and Science Challenges Collaboration with English side (use math terms in Japanese) “Big Word” in the target language Standardized Test prep: depends on the states Need counters

K-1 Launch of Immersion: 

K-1 Launch of Immersion Challenges Communications between English and immersion teachers What we can do Have regular meetings English teacher works to support the program

Grades 2-3-4: 

Grades 2-3-4 What we can do Use FOSS Science kits contact Cristina

Grade 5 – Middle School : 

Grade 5 – Middle School Challenges No planning before beginning a new program District-wide changes to curriculum Lower readers in native language – how do they read in target language? What we can do Novels should coordinate with historical theme Shared reading, guided reading, independent reading Reduced to LA/SS block Summer required reading program – discuss in target language next fall; “assessment” in English

Spanish Language: 

Spanish Language Challenges Full-time or part-time? Academic success What we can do State decisions

Japanese Language: 

Japanese Language Challenges When should we introduce Romaji? When should we use hiragana/katakana? What we can do Computer use


Ideas “Exchange Day” – teachers spend a day as an Instructional Assistant in a sister school Sunset  Sheridan, Stanford Sheridan  Sunset, Stanford, Richmond Stanford  Sunset, Sheridan, Richmond Richmond  Stanford, Sheridan Consider pros and cons of various program models Full, partial or dual Immersion teacher teaches English classes or not

Ideas (cont.): 

Ideas (cont.) Give extra support (such as a sub day) for an immersion teacher whenever a new student is added to the class – build it into the budget Resource Development grant All schools share in the development Maybe one week in the summer? Create an immersion listserv

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