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Posted: Fri Jun 13, 2003 11:55 pm
I was born in Guadalajara, Mexico and when I came to the United States, I was put in an ESL class. Howevever, I am getting Bilingual certification, and I don't know much about it. I would like to know what should I expect as a Bilingual teacher? Any tips on how to be a good bilingual teacher? What are some areas where I could find a job?
Posted: Fri Jun 20, 2003 1:48 pm
I am in your same situation. I did my Intership in a Bilingual Program in Nacogdoches, but I only observed the children taught in Spanish. I was told that they went for English instruction 1 hour a day. Also, the Primary School Principal in my school district and I went to Luking ISD and observed their bilingual program. They teach 1/2 a day in Spanish and 1/2 in English. The teacher are set-up in teams, the bilingual teacher teaches Language Artes in Spanish, and the ESL teacher teaches math in English. They have the same books in the classrooms and do the same activities, so the children get a double dose. They learn the skills in their native language and they are exposed to English language. The plan my school district has for me, is to work with the NES students in the morning and do Spanish Instruction and the rest of the day pull out some children from classroom with ESL certified teachers. I do not know how this is going to work since the bilingual programs is going to be implemented in January.
Posted: Tue Jun 24, 2003 12:19 am
Thank you for your reply. It looks like you know a lot of information about bilingual and ESL classroom. I know you are going to do great in your job. I really hope I get to observe a bilingual or ESL classroom when I start doing my internship.
Posted: Tue Jun 24, 2003 5:52 pm
Arlet, I am currently teaching a First grade bilingual class. We do not have a curriulum yet so I have to work on it. This was my first year so I was lost, but working with the TEKS is helping me out a lot. This year my goal was to get my kids reading. In first grade they have to read 60 word per minute by the time they leave, this is in their language. I didn't focus much on ESL, I only taught them the sounds of letters and chunks. This coming school year I plan to have an ESL center and take short poems in English. I am trying to work with centers so that I have the time that I need to assess and teach each child. I know that it is different for 3rd, 4th, and 5th bilingual teachers because of the TAKS, but my thought is that if they get an early start they will succed in the upper grades. Also in those grades they have to learn how to begin reading in Enlish in order to move to the only English classes in Middle school and High school. I think that the biggest issue are these: Reading and giving the students a good foundation in their own language and introduce English to them. I think that in the upper grades they should be immersed in the English Language instead of giving them on ly 30 minute instruction of English. I strongly believe that this will help them succeed in the "regular" classroom setting than just sticking them without enough knowledge in the English Language.
I am sure that in Jacksonville, TX, New Summerfield, TX, Rusk, TX, Palestine, TX and Tyler desperately need bilingual teachers escpecially in Jacksonville (there they have their curriculum and the staff there is great, of course they have their problems but what district doesn't).
Posted: Wed Jun 25, 2003 2:09 am
thanks a lot for responding to my posting. For what you've told me I see that you have accomplish a lot. I hope that I have a good experice on my first year teaching too. Thanks for letting me know about some the issues I will encounter in the classroom and I wish you good luck in your second year of teaching.
Posted: Thu Jun 26, 2003 12:40 am
I took have the same worries you have about bilingual classrooms. I like Blanca got to do my 1st internship in a bilingual classroom and only witnessed Spanish being taught. I do not agree they should only be pulled out for 1 hour to learn English. The whole purpose of a bilingual program is to reinforce the kids native language in certain content areas while introducing/exposing English to them. Ruth had the right idea. When you become a bilingual teacher I believe you are saying you are going to teach the kids in their native language but at the same time you are going to do your best at gearing them to use English more often. The goal is to get these kids to learn English. But i have the same concerns you have, and wish the classes had gave us more knowlege on what to do.
Posted: Thu Jun 26, 2003 1:05 am
I agree with you that instruction should begin at a younger age. I too think it will be easier for students to start young and build onto the language as they get older. As far as the older students getting 30 minutes of English instruction, that can't be close to enough time. And how many of those 30 minutes are really spent on instruction? I hate the idea of the TAKS test. Everyone is more concerned with whether or not their students will pass the test and unfortunately, sometimes the real focus for learning is lost. I can't imagine how it must be for ESL students who are accountable for taking the test and being expected to pass it with little amounts of English instruction. However, it sounds to me like you're doing a good job for your first year. It appears that you have a real passion to see the students be successful. They are lucky to have you. Thanks for your reply!