Incorporating Two Spoken Languages in the Classroom

Dual-Language-Center-Signs-Graphic

Today, I came across an article about how more states in the United States are incorporating two spoken languages in the classroom. In the US, the number of non-English language speakers is increasing greatly. According to the Center for Immigration Studies, as of 2013, about one in five US residents are foreign-language speakers – meaning English is not their primary language. The US has always been a diverse country with immigrants coming from many European and Asian countries in the past, and now as more Hispanic and Latin American immigrants entering the country, the need for dual-language classrooms is becoming clearer.

The news article mentions this,

Researchers estimate that 1,000 or more such programs exist throughout the nation.

Supporters of the movement argue that becoming bilingual allows students to better compete in the global economy, while researchers agree, saying such students perform better academically than students who only speak one language.

And also this,

Studies have proven that multilingual people have an increased capacity to think creatively, are open to more opportunities later in life, and show a decreased risk of developing dementia.
 I remember my own elementary school  years, and my second grade teacher taught us some basic Spanish and we would use it in class occasionally, but at that time, there were far fewer foreign-language speakers than there are now. Personally, I think dual-language classrooms are a good thing. Helping students develop their language skills, both in English and a second language, can really help them later on as they look for jobs or travel.
What do you think about dual-language classrooms?

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Filed under Classrooms, Education, Elementary Education, ELL, English, ESL, Languages, News, Teaching, Vocabulary Skills

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