Momentum Builds for Dual-Language Learning

After reading a story about a Mexican hat dance, 1st grader Ethan Wheeler tries out the dance himself at the Wharton K-8 Dual Language Academy in Houston, one of the oldest schoolwide dual-language programs in the country. Dual-language programs—in which teachers split instruction between English and another language—are growing in popularity nationwide.
 
—Michael Stravato for Education Week
 

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San Jose, Calif.

In a preschool class at Gardner Academy, a public elementary school near downtown San Jose, teacher Rosemary Zavala sketched a tree as she fired off questions about what plants need to grow. “¿Qué necesitan las plantas?” she asked her 4-year-old charges in Spanish.

Las flores toman agua” was the exuberant answer from one girl, who said that flowers drink water. A boy answered in English: “I saw a tree in my yard.”

The next day, Ms. Zavala’s questions about plants would continue—but in English.

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