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Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

School children growing biliteracy using translanguaging while learning to be democratic citizens
by Goenaga Ruiz De Zuazu, Adriana, Ph.D., New Mexico State University, 2017, 232; 10760562
Abstract (Summary)

This dissertation emerged at the intersection of collaboration, immigration issues, and language practices. Third-grade students started the school year with much difficulty to engage in academic content and language learning, mainly due to a lack of self-regulation which greatly affected the classroom dynamics. Drawing from Freire (1970, 1993), I believe in the importance of the process of conscientization, which is the critical understanding of the context around us and growing in awareness through reflection and transformative action, and the notion of critical literacy as the "reading of the word and the world" (Freire & Macedo, 1987). The purpose of the study was to set conditions for students to engage in language learning in a collaborative participatory democracy classroom environment. The following general question guided but did not limit my study: How can I, as a teacher-researcher, and my third-grade students work so students become biliterate through collaboration and translanguaging practices? Participatory Action Research (PAR)/Research As Praxis (RAP) philosophy was both the methodology of the study and a fundamental part of my pedagogy. Two transformations: responsibility `conciencia ' (consciousness) and language events progressed in three stages: the beginning-of-the-year stage; the settling-in-and-soaking-in stage; and the common-motto-and-`mismo-barco' (in the same boat) stage. As a result, both students and I were transformed. Students advanced in behavioral and emotional self-awareness, guiding dialogue, making group decisions, and solving conflicts. In their process of becoming biliterate, students stopped making translations and overcame the fear of speaking in English. They started using English and translanguaging practices as an authentic type of communication using their whole linguistic repertoire. I stood up for a symmetrical students-teacher relationship by democratically promoting participation without guiding and consciously balancing power relations permitting a more student-led classroom assembly time and conflicts solved by students. Some lessons I learned were: overcoming an initial naïve thinking about participation, transforming to create the conditions for student participation in conflict resolution and decision-making, how I released myself from being the power figure and educated to make a good use of the power to participate democratically in conflict resolution and decision-making, the process of civic education, and biliteracy and translanguaging.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Torres, Myriam N.
School: New Mexico State University
School Location: United States -- New Mexico
Source: DAI-A 79/04(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Bilingual education, English as a Second Language, Pedagogy
Keywords: Civic Education and Democratic Citizenship, Critical Literacy, Emotional intelligence, Mindfulness, and Self-Regulation, English as a Second Language in Elementary School, Participatory Action Research, Translanguaging
Publication Number: 10760562
ISBN: 978-0-355-66851-3
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