1. Literacy Squared
The instructional approaches, strategies, and assessment practices of the Literacy Squared framework are meant to align and address the language resources and strengths of children who enter school with some knowledge of linguistic systems and literacy in two languages. Like others in the field (Garcia, 2009; Reyes, 2006; Ruiz, 1988) we view these languages as resources to be nurtured and developed in school.
2. Unique Features of Literacy Squared
The curriculum is the same as the general education program and students have the opportunity to learn the content of science, math, reading, language arts, and social studies in Spanish and English.
The time allocated for Spanish literacy instruction decreases through the grades, while the time for literacy-based ELD instruction increases.
4. What does the research say about Literacy Squared?
Research over the past four decades has concluded definitively that teaching emerging bilingual students to read in Spanish as well as English promotes both biliteracy and higher levels of reading achievement in English (August & Shanahan, 2006; Rolstad, Mahoney, & Glass, 2005; Slavin & Cheung, 2005). What is most compelling about this body of evidence is that in all cases the positive results from bilingual programs exceeded those of English-only programs. (Slavin & Cheung, 2005).
5. Where will the program be located and how can students participate?
The Literacy Squared Program is located in the following neighborhood elementary schools:
Auburn, Bush, Chávez, Eyre, Four Corners, Hallman, Hammond, Hayesville, Highland, Hoover, Keizer, Kennedy, Lamb, Lee, Richmond, Scott, Swegle, Washington, Weddle, Yoshikai.
In order to participate, students must be designated as English Language Learners (ELL) with Spanish as their home language and live in the area of one of the above schools. If native language instruction is only available at a school other than the neighboring school, the parent must be informed of this option, as well as the district’s responsibility to provide transportation to and from the school at no cost.
Findings have been documented in all partner schools and districts (e.g., see Sparrow and Escamilla, 2012). Research examining the reading and writing outcomes in Spanish and English of students in Literacy Squared addresses the following research questions:
1.What are Spanish reading and writing outcomes of students longitudinally and annually?