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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Discovering Pride and Enthusiasm at a Dual Immersion School


In California, dual immersion programs are increasing. Knowing more than one language is a valuable skill for all students. In order for educators to support students in developing their multilingual abilities it is important that we have constant reflection about our teaching pedagogy and try multiple strategies to engage students. Through this inquiry, my hope was to inspire enthusiasm and pride among students in a dual language immersion program who demonstrated a resistance to learning Spanish. To address the issue of resistance, I created a unit of study around the value of bilingualism. The unit focused on valuing knowing more than one language, the history of Spanish in California, higher education, the cognitive benefits of being multilingual, and how multilingual individuals can help their community. The theories that informed my study were sociocultural theory, culturally relevant pedagogy, and community cultural wealth. My main data collection strategies included semi-structured interviews, participant observation, collection of student work, and survey collection of six parents and eighteen students. Findings from this study suggest that personal narratives can be a powerful medium for inspiring pride and enthusiasm in the process of becoming bilingual.

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