As an international educator, it’s impossible never to wonder about how to support emergent bilinguals and language learning in the classroom. Two weeks into SPELTAC and I am excited by all the questions and insights that are already emerging.
There are so many questions. How do we make EAL parent voices more audible in the school? How do I show I value my students’ home language? If we teach through English, will students lose their ability to think in their home language? How can we use art as a way to support English language learners?
I cannot wait to see what teachers will try out with their learners, how the questions will be addressed and documented.
I loved how Dana referred to it in her post We Do Not Live in Bubbles:
“ALL of our ideas are influencing the others and growing together into a giant tumbleweed of collective understanding.”
This is how I think SPELTAC should evolve. Not a list of ‘must-do’s’ , but an offering of resources to help teachers address questions they have about supporting emergent bilinguals and a platform to discuss, inspire, create and build on each other’s understanding. Please go through the course material in this manner. Use the readings to find answers to your own questions and write posts about what you feel you need to learn about language and learning.
And then for the million-dollar question: Do I have to use Twitter?
Although it suggests you do so in the orientation course, please don’t think you have to use Twitter. SPELTAC is not about must-do’s, it’s about collaborating, connecting and reflecting. Twitter is just a great tool for that. A number of articles have been curated for you to explain Twitter in education. Educators around the world report that Twitter is useful for professional development. Just watch the #speltac feed and see how people are connecting, celebrating and using each other’s ideas.
Here is the video I showed about Twitter:
The SPELTAC Google Community is also a good way to share and this is not an open network like Twitter, so go with what you are more comfortable with.
Thanks to all of you who are running with it!
Inspired by Beautiful Questions , here is a SPELTAC wonder wall. If you are reading this, please can you add your questions?
Tags: mthouterman questions twitter