Bilingualism and Home Language Use

Enoch Dahle

Sociocultural aspects for bilingual students in the classroom

Sociocultural aspects impact bilingual students in that many assumptions that a native speaker may make are not necessarily understood by English language learners. Different attitudes about freedom, government, gender roles, and religion may affect whether a student understands the content. English language learners also may feel less confident than native speakers. In some cases a latin language speakers may understand the roots of some words better than native speakers.

Strategies and resources for cultivating home and school partnerships

Producing a product can be a very helpful way to cultivate home and school partnerships, this way parents can see what is going on at school. Reaching out to families by email, text, and having conferences is critical in developing personal relationships of trust.. Having a translation of written materials when possible can help non English speaking parents understand what is being taught.

Strategies for evaluating the effectiveness of the home and school partnerships

Effective home and school partnerships can be evaluated through communication. Ongoing email, written messages, phone calls, and meetings are the best way to evaluate the effectiveness of school and home partnerships. Parent will let teachers know what they think when asked. Some concerns students have may only be expressed to parents and other concerns only to the teacher. Discovery of the gaps will only take place with frequent communication.

Cultural impact of bilingualism and home language use

The cultural impact of bilingualism and home language use can be profound for both the community and the students. Result vary depending on the similarities of the cultures. Someone who speaks Dutch and has studied English in there home country may integrate with little difficulty, where a student from rural China, or Afghanistan or Bolivia who speaks a regional language and may not be literate in their first language may have significant difficulties in adjusting. Micro cultures can develop like the Italians which had a very distinct culture in the middle of New York and other big cities for a long time.

The role of leadership in cultivating a positive home and school partnership for ELL students

School administrator can provide tremendous support in cultivating a positive home and school partnership by providing translation services to teachers and by reaching out to other agencies when needed to support immigrant families. Beyond this, ongoing training in ESL techniques is very useful.