Happy New Year! I apologize for the lack of posting. I was in my last weeks of pregnancy when I began writing this blog post and I am now currently on maternity leave.
In September, I had the absolute pleasure of presenting a workshop to educators from around Japan at Nagoya International School. The title of my workshop was A Linguistic Pedagogy of Love: Translanguaging in the International Classroom.
Typically, when I am invited to conduct workshops or consult at schools I charged with the task of giving a very large overview of general EAL mindsets and strategies. This is an important task as many international schools are trying to properly address the instructional implications of the changing demographics of their clientele; a more linguistically diverse student body and/or host country nationals. I applaud schools diving into this work and deeply value their desire to facilitate professional learning for their teachers and meet the needs of their students.
Therefore, it is not often that I really get to dive deeply into translanguaging. It is a topic that I love, as it represents a real intersection of the facets of my field; language, reading, culture, equity. It is the pedagogical stance and decisions that captures the essence of my graduate work from University of Arizona's Teaching and Sociocultural Studies: Language, Reading, and Culture Department. For a quick overview of translanguaging may I suggest viewing:
With educators from around Japan, it was a pleasure to explore topics that included: multilingual brain research, socio/cultural/historical contexts of damaging "English Only" policies, translanguaging instructional and curricular strategies, culturally sustaining pedagogy, and case studies of different language learning contexts that utilize translanguaging classrooms. Educators dug deeply into their own learning, practice, and schools to better understand these concepts and apply them to their context; from early childhood educators to secondary content specialists. They wrestled with the material, exchanged ideas, asked questioned, and inspired each other. It really was beautiful to witness.
Perhaps the most inspiring aspect from my time at Nagoya is Mr. Matthew Parr's message in the Head of School's Weekly notes. I have copied and pasted some of his message for your viewing.
I am an EAL specialist and educational consultant that is dedicated to building a more transformative educational landscape that honors linguistic diversity and challenges societal paradigms.