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Title:Translanguaging and identities: Bilingual language and literacy practices in a Spanish-English two-way immersion classroom
Author(s):Yoon, Nakyung
Director of Research:Mark, Dressman A
Doctoral Committee Chair(s):McCarthey, Sarah J; Mark, Dressman A
Doctoral Committee Member(s):Sanders-Smith , Stephanie; Pak , Yoon
Department / Program:Curriculum and Instruction
Discipline:Curriculum and Instruction
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
language and literacy practices
Spanish-English two-way immersion classroom
Abstract:The purpose of the present study is to understand the complexity of bilinguals’ language and literacy practices in relation to the dynamics of identity construction in Spanish-English two- way immersion practices. For this reason, using a comparative case study, this study investigates both Spanish-English bilinguals' and English-Spanish bilinguals’ learning to speak and write in two languages. Data show how these bilinguals, who come from Spanish-speaking homes and English-speaking homes, draw upon their linguistic repertoires to make sense of their worlds as well as how their teachers offered “transformative spaces for the performances and embodiment of bilingual (developing) identities that contributed to critical and creative learning” (Creese & Blacklege, 2015, p. 28). Therefore, this study centers on bilinguals’ language and literacy practices in relation to their developing identities, which are performed through the deployment of their linguistic repertoires. This comparative case study explores four bilinguals’ language and literacy practices in terms of learning through translanguaging as well as their learning to speak and write in a home language and an additional language, in relation to their identities. In the literature on translanguaging, scholars have examined Spanish-English translanguaging practices in relation to their identities in bilingual school settings. Furthermore, scholars have already investigated the relationship between language and literacy practices of emergent bilinguals in relation to their developing identities. However, none of them explored the intersection between primary grade bilinguals’ translanguaging, identities, and language and literacy practices in Spanish-English two-way immersion school contexts. For these reasons, this study attempted to fill the gap. Drawing on the poststructuralist’s notions of subjectivity and power, this study links bilingual children’s alternating language use, within and across sentences, to the performances of their identities. In this study, identities are defined how people invest in language, how they use language, and how they translanguage between and across two or more languages. Findings point to the assumption that bilinguals enact their bilingualism as a way of identity performance. Bilinguals performed their bilingual identities and/or negotiated their emerging bilingual identities through the deployment of their linguistic repertoires. Findings further indicate that social identities shape and are shaped by language and literacy practices that the students performed in school and at home. The cases of the focal students show that even though language and literacy development are closely related, there are cases that demonstrate that bilingual learning is bidirectional. These bilingual young learners learned to speak and write in both languages when the linguistic, emotional, and social dimensions of their developing identities were legitimized (Norton Peirce, 1995, 2016). Bi-/Multilingual language policies are required to empower learners of culturally and linguistically diverse groups to express themselves in classrooms. Further study may examine language use and the frequency of translanguaging by presenting its quantitative and qualitative comparison between a two-way immersion classroom and an English-only classroom. The way the teachers and students engage in translanguaging practices as a resource for emergent bilinguals to allow them to socialize into appropriate forms of oral and written languages remains understudied. Additionally, understanding these emergent bilinguals’ writing processes in depth over a longer period of time would allow for educators and stakeholders to implement evidence- based decisions and policies.
Issue Date:2019-12-01
Rights Information:Copyright 2019 Nakyung Yoon
Date Available in IDEALS:2020-03-02
Date Deposited:2019-12

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