Happy Labor Day everyone! After a year of taking classes
full-time, I am back to work this year as a reading specialist. I have gotten
to know many different suburban school demographics this past year due to
working with other teachers in my classes and then, more recently, going
through many interviews in a variety of districts. The one thing that stands
out is the fact that they all have an English Language Learner population. That
population comes from a variety of different places all around the world.
Currently, I am working with a variety of middle school students, some of which
are here from Thailand, Burma and Brazil. They are so bright and I can’t help
but be amazed at their tenacity in being put in a culture where they did not
speak the language and now they do it so well. I also can’t help but be envious
that they speak two different languages.
The other trend I have seen is schools offering dual-language
program to their students. Most in my area are dual-language Spanish programs, but there are also a couple districts I know if that also offer dual-language Japanese. While these offerings are not the norm, I think more and more people are realizing the value in allowing their child to participate in a program that will give them command of two languages. I also think it is very cool that Be There Bedtime stories offers some of their selections in Spanish such as En Las Aguas Articas and Un Lobo Aulla just to name a couple. My daughter, who is in a second grade dual-language classroom herself, read a Be There Bedtime Story in Spanish just the other day to her Aunt who lives in San Francisco, but grew up in Peru. How cool is that?