Bilingual Education

More and more schools are adopting bilingual immersion programmes

Bilingual Education

Traditional English Learning Programs (ELLs) focus on helping students transition from their mother tongue to English. On the other hand, bilingual immersion programs are becoming increasingly popular in public schools.

A bilingual or bilingual immersion program offers English learners (ELL) lessons on a subject in English with English as the target language. These programs provide content and literacy classes to the grade level for students in two languages (English and a partner language) and are designed to help both native speakers and non-native speakers become bilingual or bilingual. Bilingual teaching involves teaching academic content both in the two languages and in the mother tongue of secondary education, using different amounts of the second language depending on the programme model.

Bilingual Education
Image by AkshayaPatra Foundation from Pixabay

Bilingual teaching refers to the use of two languages as teaching tool for students and is considered part of the entire school curriculum unlike teaching a second language subject. Bilingual education is a path to bilingualism with the aim of understanding a second foreign language. Bilingualism offers a multidimensional view of language learning and comprises five categories: individual, society, family, school and disciplinary area.

Bilingual education is a generic term for many kinds of programs in which two languages are used for teaching. In the United States and other parts of the world, there is a form of bilingual or multilingual education. In the United States, bilingual education programs traditionally serve languages minority communities, but in recent years the trend has changed, and programs now serve all kinds of students.

Although the bilingual immersion programs are not as popular in the United States as they are in the UK, research shows that non-English-speaking students can use these programs to write and speak English. However, not all non-English speakers benefit from bilingual immersion programs as much as English speakers. Non-English and English-speaking students can learn through dual immersion and bilingual educational programs.

The aim is functional bilingualism and not disadvantage middle school students. The teacher answers questions about the second language and students continue to attend literacy and language improvement courses in their mother tongue until it is proven that the skills acquired in these courses also apply to classes in which they are taught in a second language. A bilingual classroom, on the other hand, offers both native English learners and those who have English as their target language lessons in a subject in English.

Image by Hermann Kollinger from Pixabay

New York City, North Carolina, Delaware, New York City, Utah, Oregon and Washington are among the places pushing for the expansion of bilingual classrooms. In Oregon, an explosion of interest in dual languages programs led the state to award a $900,000 scholarship to additional programs for additional programs in 2013 to existing 70 schools across the state, adding programs to existing 70 schools. 31 parents and students in Washington, D.C., also showed their desire for bilingual programs. One of Washington’s eight dual language schools had more than 1,100 applicants for 20 places in 2011. There are 30 bilingual preschool programs in the Seattle area, but parental demand is not only bilingual, but everywhere.

Efforts to integrate elitist, racist bilingualism into bilingual programs are challenging for schools. A disproportionate concentration of dual language programs in affluent, gentrifying neighborhoods denies dual language education to many racialized and bilingual other students of color, many of whom attend schools in segregated, low-income communities.

Furthermore, federal policy on bilingual education has been indifferent if not hostile at best from 1997, when voters passed some of the country’s most restrictive language laws that restricted the use of the home language education as a language for minority students. Early drop-out or bilingual transition education involves a strong use of the home language when a child enters school followed by the exclusive use of the school language (usually English) in the classroom.

In this type of program, the native class is not taught as an academic subject. Bilingual teaching, on the other hand, includes the school language as a subject and the target language as the other. Teachers and classes consist of a wide range of students with varying levels of bilingualism or mobility, including native English speakers, native Spanish speakers and those with little or no knowledge of English. This makes it difficult to reach individual students at their level, especially when there is a single teacher in a class of 20 students.

This kind of bilingual teaching is designed to help students learn a new language quickly and make the transition to learning mathematics, science and other subjects in English. Children who grow up in a bilingual environment develop a strong language awareness and work towards a solid foundation for learning other languages in the future. Students aspiring to higher education often learn a foreign language at college level, and those exposed to a bilingual educational environment (e.g. Speakers two or more languages in college) have an advantage over their peers.

Cummins (1981) points out that academic usage and content constitute hurdles to academic success that many students do not jump over. Language and mathematics are particularly difficult for many students.

One way to help students overcome the hurdle to academic success that many students cannot jump over is to provide comprehensible input to LEP students by teaching the content in English and applying strategies and techniques to make the content understandable to second language learners (Short, 1991, p. 1). Thematic units seem to be an effective way to develop “language and subject knowledge and thinking skills” for students, as opposed to exercises in grammatical structure and language which are integrated into academic content. They also help engage students in real-world language usage by using language in a variety of situations, modes, and text types.

FSME refers to a series of approaches that emphasise the development of the mother tongue through more translation services and bilingual helpers. TBE is sometimes referred to as a compensatory model, which means transitional bilingual education (TBE), which balances students “need for subtractive bilingualism by trying to replace their mother tongue with English as soon as possible. TBI is associated with poor language skills and poor academic performance.

Additive Bilingualism, Biliteracy, Bilingual Immersion and Dual Language Instruction promote biliteracy by introducing the second language learner to content and by introducing in both languages. Maintaining bilingual education is seen as an enrichment that enhances students “linguistic abilities through additive bilingualism and continues the development of both languages. Late English proficiency supports additive linguistics, as students “home language skills develop to the level of English by sixth grade. Language preservation programs provide support to promote the learning of two languages and develop knowledge of both.

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