Ideas to use in a bilingual classroom
So, I am going to try REALLY hard to post an idea once a week for teachers to use when working in bilingual/dual language classrooms. I have worked in both so I will try and include ideas that work in both settings. In my district we use the "Roller Coaster" model (50/50) meaning we do one day in English and the next day in Spanish. It is similar to the A/B day schedule that a high school student would have. Some districts divide the day up while others do a schedule like this: Monday, Wednesday, Friday AM-English; Tuesday, Thursday, Friday PM-Spanish. Also, in my district, it is just 1 teacher-myself-who does the English and Spanish components. Other districts have 2 teachers, one for English and one for Spanish and the students oven change classrooms. In my case, students remain in the same room. I was trying to find a way for students to know, before they even entered the classroom what language we were speaking for the day. I created a chart that was red on 1 side and blue on the other. Another teacher helped me with this great idea! I placed it by my door and would change it every morning. Red meant English and Blue meant Spanish. I proceeded to then color code everything in my room. I did not have a large space for word walls or bulletin boards so I then color coded my words for the word wall. Red words were English words and Blue were Spanish words. Their center books, poetry books, center activities were all color coded with those red/blue dot stickers. If they saw the sign on red, they knew they would need all of the red books and vice versa. I plan to do the same thing this year but because I am doing the Hollywood classroom theme, I am going to change the blue to yellow. I always introduce this on the 1st day of school. In a bilingual classroom, I use the same sign but inside the classroom. During NLA (Native Language Arts), the sign was on blue. During ELA/ESL time, I changed it to red. If I ever forgot, the students would ALWAYS remind me. I also tell the parents this information as well. In fact, one of my parents hand made me a sign for my desk that I will always treasure-the red side says "Mrs. Hennessy" and when you flip it over, it says "Sra. Hennessy" in blue on the other side. I nearly cried when I got this as a gift! Once I unpack it, I will post a pic! When I do pack to school nights, I do a powerpoint presentation and it is always color coded for the parents. Not only does it help the students and the parents but it also helps me to stay organized.