ERIC Number: ED426405
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1998-Apr
Why I Study Spanish.
English teachers together with multilingual and multidialect students can create new standards for language use and learning in the classroom. A teacher of writing and ethnic studies finds herself telling her students "I still have time to learn Spanish." Many to whom she speaks these words are native speakers of Spanish, struggling in classroom discussions or in their writing to perfect standard English. Students have disarmed her typical classroom authority primarily through speaking Spanish. When their Spanish seizes English to enforce a collaborative model of instruction in classroom meetings the transformative power of this reversal compels the teacher to renew contact with "el espanol," if necessary, one word at a time. After receiving a notice that the teacher will be delivering a paper called "Why I Study Spanish" in April of the following year, she decides to start learning the language right then and there, vowing to construct a bilingual flashcard series and cart them around religiously. To confront her weaknesses as "la estudiante," she begins to infuse her teaching with multiple language use. The teacher invites her current composition class to showcase their multiple language use in their writing by using "code switching" between English and Spanish. The composition class can no longer be a place divorced from the realities of language use occurring in the concrete terrain that surrounds colleges and universities.(Contains 4 notes and 10 references.) (CR)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Conference on College Composition and Communication (49th, Chicago, IL, April 1-4, 1998).