March 17, 2012

Book: Diary of a Bilingual School


Diary of a Bilingual School: How a Constructivist Curriculum, a Multicultural Perspective, and a Commitment to Dual Immersion Education Combined to Foster Fluent Bilingualism in Spanish- and English-Speaking Children
By Sharon Adelman Reyes and James Crawford
Published by DiversityLearningK12

Summary: Dual immersion, a popular new way to cultivate bilingualism, is capturing the attention of parents and educators alike. By bringing together children from diverse backgrounds to learn each other’s languages in a natural setting, it has proved far more effective at cultivating fluency than traditional approaches.

But how do these programs actually work? What goes on in dual immersion classrooms? And what is it that makes them so effective?
Diary of a Bilingual School answers these questions with a unique mix of narratives and analysis. Depicting a year in the life of a second-grade classroom, it demonstrates what can happen when the instruction is bilingual and the curriculum is constructivist.

The book focuses on Chicago’s Inter-American Magnet School, one of the nation’s most acclaimed dual immersion programs, where children thrive in an environment that unlocks their intellectual curiosity and enthusiasm for learning. Simultaneously, without conscious effort, they become proficient in two languages and at home in a culture that differs from their own.

Visit the publisher’s website at
Purchase the book from Amazon at

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