Teaching Reading in Spanish: A Linguistically Authentic Framework for Emerging Multilinguals is an essential teacher instructional guide to developmental biliteracy. It provides a comprehensive reading framework for teachers who teach students to read Spanish in K-12 dual language and bilingual programs. Anchored in asset-based pedagogy, this framework applies a systematic Spanish literacy approach to biliteracy by weaving together a tapestry of relevant instructional components including phonemic and phonological awareness, oracy, decoding, background knowledge, vocabulary, language structures, verbal reasoning, and literacy knowledge.
What sets this Spanish developmental literacy framework apart is its approach to Spanish reading instruction that is based on linguistically-authentic pedagogy, not on English-language practices. Teaching Reading in Spanish includes the DCC Leveling Instrument, a standards-based, practical instructional tool that guides teachers through the process of efficiently and accurately determining the reading levels of authentic Spanish text. DCC Lectura provides teachers with the tools that they need to guide their students to become skilled readers through appropriately challenging books that act as multicultural mirrors, windows, and sliding-glass doors.
Dr. Rocio del Castillo-Perez is an assistant superintendent for special services and a university professor. She has dedicated her professional career to advocating for educational equity and social justice and has received recognition for her work in special education, bilingual, and dual-language programs.
Dr. Julia Stearns Cloat is an associate superintendent of curriculum and an adjunct professor. She is dedicated to providing equitable and accessible learning experiences through the development of curriculum.
List of Tables
Chapter 1: Introduction
Chapter 2: The Science of Reading for Emergent Multilingual Learners
Chapter 3: Stages of Reader Development
Chapter 4: Leveling Text
Chapter 5: Examples of Leveled Text
Chapter 6: Leveled Books in the Classroom
Appendix A. Effective Advocates: The Missing Link Between Home and School Cultures
Appendix B. Additive Approach to Multilingualism
Dr. Kris Nicholls
Appendix C. Spanish Book Collections to Inspire Joy and Engagement
Appendix D. The Power of a Paired Curriculum
Appendix E.Acentos ortográficos en español: A Simple Guide
Dr. Kimberley D. Kennedy
About the Authors and Contributors
Educators of students learning to read in Spanish will find this book allows them to build their students’ proficiency and serve as a scaffold to reading in both English and Spanish. del Castillo-Perez and Cloat provide an instructional framework, based on sound linguistic practices, that can be used to design learning experiences for students. They provide a continuum of reading development, in Spanish, that allows teachers to identify instructional needs and take action to move students forward in their reading development. The authors also note ways in which educators can scaffold learning experiences based on an individual students’ level of performance.
In my twenty years working with multilinguals, I have never read such a comprehensive book about the art of teaching reading in Spanish. This book is easy to read and gives the reader all the tools necessary to improve literacy instruction for bilingual students. I love that the authors included key anchors that focused on asset-based pedagogies as well as seeing multilingualism from an additive perspective. I can’t wait to use this as a book study with my staff!
Building on culturally relevant pedagogical tenets, insights, and practices, Teaching Reading in Spanish is one of its kind in truly highlighting multilingualism as an asset. Rocio del Castillo-Perez and Julia Stearns Cloat provide compelling research along with using their experiences as educators and district leaders, the foundation for not only the what, which is approaching biliteracy to teaching reading, but the how to integrate research into the daily reading block using content leveled texts and integrated biliteracy units. More importantly, the why behind their incredible work of love demonstrates how they are committed to providing better educational opportunities for all in a diverse world. This book is an example of how equity can be achieved through a linguistically authentic framework for our emerging multilingual learners—something that many districts have been working towards for many years.
Thankfully, the field of education is seeing a growing number of bilingual and dual-language programs. As we come to realize the critical need to grow the Spanish literacy of our multilingual learners, we must also equip our teachers with research-based, practical tools to do so. To meet this need, Rocio del Castillo-Perez and Julia Stearns Cloat have developed a user-friendly guide for teaching reading when the target language is Spanish. Teaching Reading in Spanish: A Linguistically Authentic Framework for Emerging Multilinguals is not only a practical guide, but it also offers readers much-needed reminders of equity, asset-based pedagogies, and culturally relevant practices.
Teaching Reading in Spanish: A Linguistically Authentic Framework for Emerging Multilinguals is a much needed and valuable resource for teachers of multilingual students in bilingual and dual language classrooms. With a foundation in quality reading research and cultural responsiveness, DCC Lectura provides a system for assessing students, leveling books written in Spanish, and matching students to leveled books that will lead to high quality reading instruction for emergent readers of Spanish. With easy-to-use resources, teachers can put DCC Lectura into action tomorrow!
Teaching Reading in Spanish is a balance between theory, research, and application. With the rise in multilingual students in our districts, it’s more important than ever to be responsive to their needs and teach literacy that is authentic to the language. This book weaves this knowledge throughout, creating a beautiful tapestry of how Spanish literacy works. The authors have also created a leveling system for leveling books in Spanish—the DCC Leveling Instrument—a tool that is not yet out there in the field. This book is a must for districts who offer native language instruction in Spanish, as the information presented in this book will shift the thinking about linguistically and culturally appropriate instruction in Spanish.
The success of dual language programs depends on the ability of classroom teachers to grow strong biliterate minds. This book answers so many questions that have been unanswered for years regarding Spanish bilingual reading instruction. It presents a holistic, comprehensive, and culturally appropriate biliteracy model for our U.S. classrooms. It also balances the theories of English instructional practices while considering Spanish linguistic nuances. It truly weaves a tapestry of our dual language students, and I am so grateful del Castillo-Perez and Cloat have put forth this book to move our dual language programs forward!
An untapped source of support that is often overlooked in biliteracy programs is the assets that students bring with them in their home language. This book makes a strong case for knowing, understanding, and leveraging those assets to support the biliteracy development of students who are native speakers of the partner language and those who are native speakers of English. Although there are many similarities in the English and Spanish languages, early literacy development in Spanish differs in many significant ways from English. This book highlights the similarities and expounds on the differences to allow teachers to better understand the importance of those differences as they seek to support their students’ early literacy development in Spanish.
In this book, del Castillo-Perez and Cloat offer an approachable framework for bilingual and dual language educators’ Spanish literacy instruction that emphasizes knowing your students, implementing culturally and linguistically authentic literature, leveling books, and planning for meaningful instruction. In a time when educators are all-too-often deprofessionalized, Teaching Reading in Spanish extends the vast knowledge and professionalism required of bilingual and dual language educators by rooting its framework squarely in the legacy of civil rights movements (when bilingual education gained momentum nationwide) with their key anchors of equity, additive bilingualism, asset-based pedagogies, and culturally and linguistically relevant instructional practices. As someone who has been working in bilingual and dual language settings for over twenty-five years as a bilingual classroom teacher, literacy specialist, and professor, I can’t wait for this book to be in the hands of bilingual and dual language educators. Their emerging multilingual students will benefit as a result.
I cannot wait to put Teaching Reading in Spanish: A Linguistically Authentic Framework for Emerging Multilinguals in the hands of our Dual Language teachers, psychologists, reading specialists, and administrators. This book is the next piece we have been looking for in reading instruction. It provides not only a framework for leveling text and the progress of students through the Spanish reading process, but weaves in advocacy and culturally sustaining pedagogy. The DCC framework condenses all of the theory of reading instruction for emerging multilingual students into applicable practices. It integrates the complexity of culture, language, and reading acquisition into an authentic method for evaluating and instructing reading in multilingual classrooms. For too long, we have taught and assessed reading through “Spanish a la English” due to not having a resource such as this. This also holds true in our MTSS practices. Teaching Reading in Spanish is just the resource we’ve been looking for to address the beautiful identities and learning practices of our emerging multilingual students.