CONFERENCE STRANDS

STRAND I: IMMERSION PEDAGOGY AND ASSESSMENT

This strand focuses on the theoretical and practical questions that underpin instructional and assessment practices in a variety of immersion and dual language settings. It showcases innovative classroom-oriented research and teacher practices that address the challenges of promoting and assessing language proficiency, biliteracy across the curriculum, and rigorous content mastery through the languages of instruction.

Critical Questions:

  1. What scaffolding strategies are needed to make a rigorous curriculum accessible to all learners through the languages of instruction?
  2. How can teachers capitalize on engagement strategies to maximize students' opportunities for language production?
  3. How can teachers leverage digital technologies to enhance biliteracy development?
  4. What culturally relevant instructional and assessment practices can teachers adopt to foster inclusiveness in diverse classrooms?
  5. How do teachers effectively use formative and summative assessment to monitor student progress and inform instruction for subject matter learning and language proficiency outcomes?
  6. How do teachers personalize learning to meet the needs of all students in a variety of immersion and dual language programs?
  7. How can teachers most effectively integrate a focus on language and literacy during subject matter instruction?
  8. How can teachers effectively collaborate across languages and subject areas to foster biliteracy development and increase coherence across the curriculum?
  9. What forms of intervention and enrichment are effective for exceptional learners?

STRAND II: CULTURE, IDENTITY, AND COMMUNITY

This strand focuses on the important goals of engaging communities in immersion, dual language, and language revitalization efforts and building relationships through and across cultural differences. Within this strand, topics to be addressed include: exploring how participant identities are constructed in immersion and dual language contexts; examining issues of social justice, equity, and belonging in the larger sociopolitical arena; developing and understanding biculturalism and/or multicultural competencies; and providing measures that practitioners can implement at program and classroom levels to help the field better embrace diversity in our increasingly interconnected world. Proposals may include critical approaches at the classroom, school, district, and/or community levels.

Critical questions:

  1. How do students perceive their own culture/identity and their relationship to students of other cultural backgrounds in the classroom and in their communities?
  2. How are these perceptions transformed and learners empowered through immersion and dual language education?
  3. What are some ways teachers successfully position themselves and their students to create more equitable classroom spaces in which all learner voices are heard and respected?
  4. What are some innovative approaches to educate and engage parents, families and communities to empower learners and improve learning outcomes?
  5. How do various immersion and dual language programs define, articulate, and teach culture?
  6. How do we assess the effectiveness of cultural pedagogies in the classroom?
  7. How does the community perceive immersion and dual language programs in their midst?
  8. How do immersion and dual language programs negotiate cultural innovation and cultural tradition?

STRAND III: PROGRAM DESIGN AND EVALUATION

Immersion and dual language programs must address a number of important issues in program design and implementation to successfully serve students and their families. Although all programs have a number of features in common, they also have distinct considerations. Specific program purposes, learner populations, and community needs must inform program design and evaluation, literacy development practices, and long-range goals. This strand welcomes sessions related to the strengths and limitations of various program models, strategies for equitable access and recruitment, and outcomes that correspond to diverse approaches to biliteracy development across the grades.

Critical questions:

  1. How can research-based guiding principles be used to best inform program design and evaluation?
  2. How can programs maintain integrity and fidelity to the model when confronted with internal and external challenges?
  3. In what ways do approaches to initial biliteracy development interact with a program’s purpose, languages, learner needs, and sociolinguistic context?
  4. What program evaluation methods and tools can be used to support and strengthen programs?
  5. What sustainability and expansion plans have proven effective in articulating programs to promote a preK–20 sequence?
  6. How do immersion and dual language programs effectively design, plan and implement secondary continuation and bridge into university programs?
  7. What are ways immersion and dual language programs can address issues of access and other equity-related challenges in education?
  8. How do educators ensure appropriate programmatic support for students from diverse backgrounds (socioeconomic, linguistic, racial, cultural, developmental)?

STRAND IV. POLICY, ADVOCACY, AND COMMUNICATION

School, district, state and national policies and public opinion impact immersion and dual language education. As a result, there is an ongoing need to identify, educate, and engage stakeholders to monitor policy development, advocate for high-quality program design and implementation, and communicate with the public about these programs and their outcomes. This strand addresses important questions regarding language policy and planning; legislative mandates; state, national, and international advocacy initiatives; and strategies for expanding support for immersion and dual language education.

Critical questions:

  1. How do school, district, state, and federal standards and policies contribute to or impede high-quality design and implementation of various types of programs?
  2. What strategies can stakeholders use to create, implement, and sustain effective programs, practices and policies?
  3. What are effective ways to communicate with stakeholders about the relationship between program outcomes and high-quality implementation?
  4. How can programs meet legislative initiatives while maintaining fidelity to the model?
  5. What policies and practices exist that serve to limit or expand the participation of specific groups of students or teachers?
  6. In what ways are policy makers and program stakeholders facilitating immersion teacher and administrator recruitment, licensure, and hiring practices?

Strand V: Professional Preparation and Learning

Key to effective immersion and dual language programming is the education and ongoing development of classroom teachers and program leaders. The establishment of meaningful professional standards that clearly articulate what competent practitioners need to know and do to successfully promote subject matter learning alongside bilingualism and biliteracy is critical. The creation of new courses, certificates, and alternative pathways to initial licensure are emerging in response. In this strand, sessions will explore: core knowledge base and competencies of effective teachers and administrators, teacher education programs and practices that positively impact preparedness and efficacy, innovations in K-12–University partnerships, and diverse strategies for addressing ongoing professional learning needs of practicing teachers, educational specialists, and program leaders.

Critical questions:

  1. What skills, dispositions, and knowledge need to be developed in teacher and administrator preparation and in-service professional development programs? How are they best developed?
  2. How do existing teacher and administrator education and professional development experiences need to be modified to address the unique needs of educators in immersion and dual language settings across a range of levels (from pre-school to tertiary immersion)?
  3. What preservice and inservice practices and experiences best prepare teachers and administrators to meet the classroom- and program-level needs of all students?
  4. How do teacher educators ensure the development of professional learning experiences that address the needs of diverse learners (socioeconomic, linguistic, racial, cultural, developmental)?
  5. What role can alternative licensure and certification partnerships and programs play in advancing the field of immersion and dual language educator preparation and development?