White Plains public school is one of the best public that offers learning programs for students on second language or the dual language program. The main goal of the school is to provide or equip its students with skills and knowledge on K-12 Dual Language. Thus, it promotes the student's experience in bilingualism, biliteracy, and biculturalism. The school first established a dual language program at George Washington elementary school in the year 2007-2008. The second dual language cohort was established at Post Road elementary school in the year 2009-2010, and the recent dual-language cohort was established at one of their three remaining elementary schools during the year of 2017-2018. The school offers a K-5 Instructional model and a 6th-grade dual-language program. K-5 instructional model is being provided at different bridges that include kindergarten, 1st-grade, 2nd-grade, and 3rd-5th grade.
At the kindergarten level, students are separated by dominant language for literacy development all year; the students are then put in mixed groups for math, science, social studies, and special programs such as art, music, PE, or library. At the level of grade 1, students are separated by dominant language for literacy instruction during September to January every year; they are always in mixed groups for math, science, and social studies all year and alternate daily. From February to June, students are placed in mixed literacy groups for reading and writing instruction when their first language benchmark is met. At a 2nd-grade level, students are in mixed groups for reading, math, science, and social studies. They also alternate by the unit for reading and writing, and they alternate daily for math, science & social studies. This strategy is very effective in improving students' proficiency in Dual Language. At 3rd-5th grade, instructions are departmentalized by language, English language arts (ELA) is provided in English, while math, science, and social studies are offered in Spanish. There is also flexibility in that teachers may occasionally flip a unit. For instance, a math unit and science unit would be taught in English, and a Language Arts unit would be taught in Spanish. Departmentalization is carried over from 5th grade to 6th grade.
White Plains School guides the students when choosing or selecting program options and also involves parents in decision making, thus observing the political feasibility. For the proficient English students, parents have to attend an informational meeting where 6th-grade Dual Language course offerings are presented; parents may choose one or all course offerings; however, the students must meet criteria for Dual Language advanced math. Students are also evaluated individually for placement into Spanish Language Arts or Spanish for Spanish Speakers. For the English language learners, parents are oriented to the benefits of a Dual Language or Bilingual program. Spanish dominant English language learners are placed in up to three Dual Language content classes in addition to their Spanish language arts class. Entering or emerging students receive two periods of English instruction with a dually certified teacher, thus ensuring equity to all students and the efficiency of the program. Currently, they offer Dual language courses in dual language social studies, Spanish language arts, Spanish for Spanish speakers, dual language science, dual language math, and dual-language advanced math. The school looks forward to introducing dual language social studies, Math, and Science at 7th-grade and 8th-grade level at Highlands Middle School. The school will also incorporate Spanish language instruction for 6th -12th grades. These will include Spanish for Spanish speakers, Spanish language arts, AP Spanish Literature, and AP Spanish Language and Culture; the school will also introduce the NYS seal of the biliteracy program at the first year of implementation at White Plains High School.
Proficiency in Dual Language is a valuable skill that should be nurtured, cultivated, and promoted in our schools and communities. Bilingual education is thus a term used to define various models of programs in which two languages are used for instruction. Therefore, bilingual education is an effective way of promoting language proficiency and literacy in English and a partner language (Office of Bilingual Education and World Languages, 2014). Dual Language programs develop biliteracy and bilingualism and grade-level academic achievement. It also enhances the cross-cultural ability of all students. Students usually maintain their native language while continuing to learn another language; they develop self-confidence in their own culture while increasing an understanding. I, therefore, recommend that White Plain schools incorporate the use of digital apps that can assist an educator in deciphering student's academic passions and interests more readily and in fine-tune direction, thus improving the students' understanding of bilingual education. For instance, MIT app inventor offers training for the students; it also has education-related games that provide students with skills in world language arts.
I also recommend that the school should apply the use of library media specialists in educating the students, library media specialists create an innovative atmosphere by evaluating and producing updated information through the active employment of a wide range of resources, tools, and information technologies. The use of library media specialists will help educators in planning and delivering instruction that is linguistically and culturally appropriate for all diverse learners, including those with Individualized Education Programs. The use of digital literacy also encompasses a simple student task, which may include developing classroom presentations. Therefore, it ensures the utilization of materials and instructional resources that are linguistically age or grade that is appropriate and aligned to the next generation learning standards. The use of some education-related interactive, such as whiteboards application, can assist in providing content instruction and integrated language to support language development through language-focused scaffolds. It, therefore, encourages collaboration among Bilingual, ENL, and other content-area teachers, thus promoting academic achievement in all content areas.
Office of Bilingual Education and World Languages. (2014). Blueprint for English language learner/ multilingual learner success http://www.nysed.gov/common/nysed/files/nys-blueprint-for-ell-success.pdf
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White Plains Dual Language Program: K-12 Education for Bilingualism, Biliteracy, Biculturalism - Research Paper. (2023, May 06). Retrieved from https://proessays.net/essays/white-plains-dual-language-program-k-12-education-for-bilingualism-biliteracy-biculturalism-research-paper
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