- What are the differences in instructional approach and sequencing in English and Spanish language arts? Does this vary by program model and grade level?
- How much coordination should there be in literacy instruction across the two languages? Does this vary by program model or grade level?
- What literacy skills transfer across English and Spanish and which need to be taught explicitly in each language?
- Are there standards for Spanish language arts? Should they be different for L1 and L2 learners?
- What characteristics are important when choosing basal readers and other curricular materials for Spanish literacy instruction in TWI programs?
- What literacy skills are taught through the content areas and what are taught through language arts lessons?
- How do you teach a classroom of students with varying levels of literacy and reading readiness?
- Are any special supports given to students while they are developing literacy skills in their second language as opposed to their first?
6. What literacy skills are taught through the content areas and what are taught through language arts lessons?
Literacy skills are taught through both the content areas and language arts lessons. Explicit language arts instruction through both languages is an essential component of TWI instruction. But literacy skills can (and should) be taught through carefully planned content area units as well. Thematic content area units involve having students read a variety of both fiction and nonfiction material at a variety of reading levels. Literacy skills are taught through focused mini-lessons, readings, and writing projects throughout the unit. In particular, content-specific vocabulary, rhetorical structures, and skills (such as using glossaries, looking for sub-headings as a way of finding information, reading table of contents, skimming, etc.) lend themselves to instruction through the content areas.