Despite the differences in the readings, both authors discuss the importance of properly educating ELL students. I am not an ELL or bilingual education teacher and do not work in a district where there is a high prevalence of ELL students. Therefore, I found these articles to be very informative and a good way to provide me with background knowledge on this topic.
For the purpose of this blog, I am extending Brigette’s comments. I found myself agreeing with many of her connections as I was reading her post. When I read the assigned chapters, I kept making notes in the margins of how these readings related to Delpit. In reading Brigette’s blog, I found that she also made these connections. Brigette writes that the “culture of power” is evident in both Rodriguez and Collier’s articles since these students are learning English since it is the language of this “culture of power” and students need to know this to be successful in the society. I also agree that the language of the culture of power is English and that students need to learn how to speak and be literate in this language in order to be successful. While this was evident in both readings, I found the Rodriguez reading to match Delpit more closely. Delpit states that students must be explicitly taught the rules and codes of power in order to be successful in this culture. This is echoed in Rodriguez. His teachers explicitly taught him to use English and as he became more proficient in it, he became more confident. Rodriguez’s parents wanted him to be proficient in English even though it later meant that they communicated less. This reminds me of the Delpit reading where the mother said “My students know how to be black, I want you to teach them how to be white.” Rodriguez’s parents wanted him to be taught how to speak English so that he could be successful later in life.
I also agree with Brigette’s connection that the Collier reading matches up with Finn. Finn writes about “literacy with an attitude.” This is the idea that when students from less advantaged groups (like the working class or minority students) are provided with good and engaging instruction, they can grow out of the status quo. Collier mirrors this by explaining that literacy is important for the success of ELL students and provides strategies for successfully teaching literacy to this demographic. I like the quote that Brigette uses from the Collier reading: “Many transitional or ELL programs do not emphasize the backbone of school success, academic literacy. On the false premise that English oral competence is all an immigrant child needs to compete with native English speaking peers, too many
ESL or ELL programs fail to provide a literacy curriculum for their unique needs. This curricular cheats immigrant students, since literacy is indispensable for lifelong success.” For both Finn and Collier, academic literacy empowers students and is the key to future success.
More information on instructing ELL students:
Here is another article by Dr. Virginia Collier that explains the effectiveness of dual language education
This article has a review of research on successful strategies for teaching ELL students as well as how to implement best practice