- How can preservice teachers be prepared to teach in a TWI setting? What information and skills do they need in order to be effective in TWI programs?
- What are some useful and appropriate supports for new TWI immersion teachers?
- What are some useful strategies that team teachers can use to communicate student progress and coordinate lesson planning? What does teaming look like in a TWI setting?
3. What are some useful strategies that team teachers can use to communicate student progress and coordinate lesson planning? What does teaming look like in a TWI setting?
Given the lack of a research base on this topic, this response is shaped primarily by the experts’ experiences with effective practices. At Nestor Elementary’s 90/10 program, each team chooses 1 day a week to stay late for team-level planning. At these planning sessions, team partners discuss student work, student progress, lesson planning, and other relevant topics. Guidelines for team teaching are also provided in the program’s handbook on team teaching.
Key Elementary’s 50/50 program has implemented some strategies to support communication between the English and Spanish partner teachers. Every week, teachers type a summary of the activities they will be focusing on that week and share it with the partner teacher. This document also includes a list of vocabulary words and concepts that the students are going to be learning. Another strategy they use is called curriculum mapping (Hayes Jacobs, 1997). This is a document that outlines the different subject areas and highlights activities teachers are going to be doing across subjects on the same topic. Since content areas at Key are taught only in one language or the other (e.g., science in Spanish and social studies in English), this type of thematic planning helps to provide continuity in instruction across the two languages.
Activities that promote communication and interaction across team members are critically important. Calderón (1995) found a peer ethnography project to be an effective way to promote this type of communication and collaboration across team members in a TWI setting.