Translingual Partners in Early Childhood Elementary-Education

Pedagogies on Linguistic and Cognitive Engagement

by María Arreguín-Anderson (Author) Iliana Alanís (Author)
©2019 Textbook XXVIII, 220 Pages


This book takes the reader through a journey into the practical and theoretical aspects of partner-based learning in bilingual early childhood environments. The authors begin by presenting compelling arguments for the significance of this approach noting the parallels between partner-based collaborative learning and developmentally appropriate practices for young learners. Part 1 weaves in tenets of a LatCrit perspective to highlight intersections of a social justice orientation to learning and teaching and a collaborative approach that capitalizes on Latinx bilingual children’s linguistic repertoire and cultural capital. The authors unpack the translingual partner construct unveiling the potential of bilingual children as meaning-makers and language problem solvers. Part 2 contextualizes the concept of translingual partner interactions in two early childhood classrooms. Then, to bridge theory and praxis, Part 3 reveals what the authors have learned after thousands of observations, conversations, and interactions with bilingual teachers and young learners throughout the United States. Readers will find considerations for the design of partner-based interactions. Specifically, the authors address criteria such as language proficiency, academic strengths, and learning styles. The authors include general guidelines for effective partner collaboration to assist teachers in the assessment of partner-based work. To bring the discussion full circle, the authors close with an example of a real-life partnership. Chicano leaders Dolores Huerta and César Chávez’s partnership is portrayed in terms of their agency, impact, and connectedness with the community.

Table Of Contents

  • Cover
  • Title
  • Copyright
  • About the author(s)/editor(s)
  • About the book
  • This eBook can be cited
  • Contents
  • List of Figures
  • List of Tables
  • List of Appendices
  • Foreword: Partnering Young Children and Opening Up Linguistic Freedom Spaces (Ofelia García)
  • Preface (María G. Arreguín-Anderson / Iliana Alanís)
  • Acknowledgments
  • Part 1. Theoretical Framework and Rationale for the Use of Translingual Partners
  • Chapter 1. Opening Spaces for Translingual Partners’ Voices
  • Chapter 2. The Power of Translingual Partners in Early Childhood Classrooms: A Research Synthesis
  • Part 2. Translingual Partners in Action
  • Chapter 3. A View into Mrs. Dion’s Kindergarten Dual Language Classroom
  • Chapter 4. Translingual Pedagogy: A Window into Mrs. Martin’s Second Grade Dual Language Classroom
  • Part 3. From Theory to Praxis
  • Chapter 5. Using Translingual Partners: Considerations and Guidelines
  • Chapter 6. Translingual Partners: Enhancing Collaborative Learning
  • Chapter 7. Accountability and Assessment
  • Chapter 8. A Holistic Perspective of Translingual Partnerships: An Examination of Cultural Wealth
  • Series index

| ix →


Figure 1.1. Combinations of symbols to exemplify meaning.

Figure 3.1. Talk to your partner activity.

Figure 4.1. Students using semiotic tools to represent an academic concept.

Figure 4.2. Interactive Spanish and English word wall visible from any point in the classroom.

Figure 4.3. Collaborative writing in translingual partners.

Figure 6.1. Generic sentence stems in Spanish.

Figure 6.2. Generic bilingual question and sentence stems.

Figure 6.3. Designated A/B partners for prekindergarten.

Figure 6.4. Use of colored pencils in prekindergarten.

Figure 6.5. Use of colored pencils in second grade.

Figure 6.6. Joint writing with colored pencils during math class.

Figure 7.1. Shaun’s representation of objects found in the sky.

Figure 7.2. Brad and Ariana working together.

Figure 7.3. Sample writing rubric.

Figure 7.4. Sample reflective writing.

Figure 7.5. Reflection over monetary denominations.

Figure 7.6. Reflection on math homework. ← ix | x →

Figure 7.7. Reflective journal.

Figure 7.8. What we know about objects that float or sink.

Figure 7.9. Sebastian’s writing sample about his home.

| xi →


Table 1.1. Semiotic tools commonly used in informal and formal communication.

Table 2.1. Empirical studies based on dyads.

Table 2.2. Conceptual articles related to dyad learning.

Table 3.1. Language development in the early years.

Table 4.1. Language development in the primary years: What children can be expected to do.

Table 4.2. Language allocation: Daily schedule in Mrs. Martin’s second grade classroom.

Table 4.3. Distinction between content and language.

Table 4.4. Routine prosocial phrases for translingual partner interactions.

Table 5.1. Sample Language Inventory—Spanish.

Table 5.2. Sample Language Inventory—English.

Table 5.3. Pairings by linguistic strengths.

Table 5.4. Developing high/medium and medium/low partners.

Table 5.5. Social studies lesson: Kindergarten.

Table 5.6. Questions at various levels of Bloom’s Taxonomy.

Table 6.1. Snapshot of children’s emotional tasks. ← xi | xii →

Table 7.1. Sample observation for dramatic play episode.

Table 7.2. Example of an observation form sample assessment.

Table 7.3. Sample of student language profile.

Table 7.4. Sample of student self-assessment.

Table 7.5. Sample of student self-assessment.

Table 7.6. Sample checklist for language use with peer collaboration.

Table 7.7. Sample group assessment.

| xiii →


Chapter 5

Appendix A: 5P lesson template

Appendix B: Lesson design checklist

Chapter 6

Appendix A: Strategies to develop collaborative skills

Chapter 7

Appendix A: Sample assessments

| xv →


Partnering Young Children and Opening Up Linguistic Freedom Spaces

Ofelia García
The Graduate Center, City University of New York

Arreguín-Anderson and Alanís weave in this book a bilingual instructional space for very young children that liberates them from the constraints of educational “models” and language allocation policies that have been designed without considering their language and cultural practices, as well as their histories and socio-emotional lives. Focused on Latinx children, but aware of the children’s complexities in the many shapes of dual language bilingual education classrooms in the U.S., this book looks at the ways in which translingual partnerships in dual language bilingual classrooms can leverage the children’s varied linguistic and cultural wealth.

Three aspects of this book make it vitally important. First, it blends sociocultural learning theories with translanguaging theory, opening up a space of possibility in dual language bilingual classrooms. Second, it focuses on early childhood, a most important age-group. Third, the book blends theory with practice in a strong holistic relationship that makes the book valuable for educators and scholars alike. I describe these three aspects and then discuss them in relationship to bilingual education history and the development of the dual language “model.” I take up the Brother Grimm’s story of “Little Red Riding Hood and the Big Bad Wolf” to consider how the translingual partnerships of very young children that this book propose can uncover dual-language designs of monoglossic whiteness that are sometimes hidden. ← xv | xvi →


ISBN (Softcover)
ISBN (Hardcover)
Publication date
2019 (April)
New York, Bern, Berlin, Bruxelles, Oxford, Wien, 2019. XXVIII, 220 pp., 20 b/w ill., 22 tables

Biographical notes

María Arreguín-Anderson (Author) Iliana Alanís (Author)

María Guadalupe Arreguín-Anderson is Associate Professor in Early Childhood and Elementary Education at the University of Texas at San Antonio. She received her EdD in bilingual education from the Texas A&M University-Kingsville. Her research focuses on dyadic learning in bilingual dual language settings. Iliana Alanís earned her PhD from The University of Texas at Austin. She is currently Professor in the Department of Interdisciplinary Learning and Teaching for the University of Texas at San Antonio. She has numerous publications in early childhood and dual language education.


Title: Translingual Partners in Early Childhood Elementary-Education
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