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For The Love Of Language Resident blogger: Marisa Gomez

Follow Marisa weekly as she shares research, insight, and strategies for educators working with Second Language Learners.

  • Using gesture to solidify academic vocabulary

    Using gesture to solidify academic vocabulary

    Recently, my almost-3-year-old son has been very interested in those preschooler language-learning videos. As a language educator, it’s fascinating to analyze how the videos are structured. They are highly repetitive, but only take a few minutes for each concept before moving on. This matches the developmental needs of small children, who have short attention spans […]

  • Showing Solidarity for Immigrant and Refugee Students: What Schools Can Do

    Showing Solidarity for Immigrant and Refugee Students: What Schools Can Do

    Immigrants and refugees have faced a lot of uncertainty with recent political upheaval. Certainly, families with children face especially high levels of anxiety, since they may fear, at worst, being separated, or at least, being targeted or questioned at schools. Thankfully, federal laws guarantee that every school-aged child can receive access to education regardless of […]

  • Are you perpetuating stereotypes about your student and their families?

    We have talked about home-school partnerships many time on this blog, because parent engagement is, undoubtedly, one of the most powerful tools for helping students achieve success (even if parents don’t always know how to get involved). Yet, curiously (and alarmingly), teachers are unconsciously impacted by racial and ethnic stereotypes when it comes to communicating […]

  • How Lingual Learning can help the Bilingual Teacher Shortage

    How Lingual Learning can help the Bilingual Teacher Shortage

    With the passing of Prop 58 this past fall, California has made a complete turnaround in its attitude toward bilingual education. In the late 1990s, with Prop 227, voters opted to disallow the use of languages other than English for classroom instruction, which has prevented total academic success for English learners, and barred monolinguals from […]

  • 4 trucos para enseñar a los estudiantes comunicarse más formalmente

    To read this article in Spanish, click here. Cuando empezaba mis estudios de español, mis maestros nos tenían compasión. Es difícil aprender la distinción entre tú/Usted para los hablantes de inglés, así que, nos dejaban tutearlos. Manejar todas las conjugaciones de verbos es trabajo suficiente a la hora de aprender el español, así que, el […]

  • Cómo Utilizar la Lengua Materna para Apoyar a los Estudiantes a la Hora de Escribir

    Cómo Utilizar la Lengua Materna para Apoyar a los Estudiantes a la Hora de Escribir

    To read this post in English, click here. ¿Con qué frecuencia usan la lengua materna tus estudiantes a la hora de escribir? Si enseñas en una escuela de inmersión, la respuesta tal vez es “Muchas veces,” o “Diario.” Pero si tus estudiantes no reciben instrucción en la lengua materna, la respuesta tal vez es “Rara […]

  • Leading by Example: 6 Strategies for School Leaders

    Leading by Example: 6 Strategies for School Leaders

    So much of the success of English Learners is credited to teachers. And rightly so–ELD teachers are historic champions of culturally and linguistically diverse students, and content teachers are steadily joining their ranks as they are empowered to help this population succeed. But uplifting, inclusive attitudes toward ELs begins with school leaders, in large part […]

  • Making Racial Integration Real

    Making Racial Integration Real

    Growing up, I went to a small parochial school in Northern California, that had about 80 total high schoolers. Two were black. Two were Asian siblings. One was Hispanic, but only half. I didn’t realize I had a limited understanding of diversity until I entered the wider world as an adult, when I had an […]

  • What You Said and What I Heard: Improving Oral Comprehension

    What You Said and What I Heard: Improving Oral Comprehension

    Do you remember that game on the radio, where they would play a snippet of a hard-to-understand pop song and listeners would call in to guess the lyrics? The first time I heard Elton John’s “Rocket Man” as a teen was on just such a radio segment, where callers guessed at the line “Rocket Man, […]

  • Let’s Get Physical: Using the Body to Strengthen the Mind

    Let’s Get Physical: Using the Body to Strengthen the Mind

    In this world of office jobs and student desks, we spend a lot of time sitting down, particularly when we need to do our best thinking. In fact, sitting and thinking as joint activities are immortalized by such icons as “The Thinker” sculpture, and Winnie the Pooh, at his thinking spot. We expect students to […]

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Marisa became interested in language education after ten years of gesture and pantomime with her Italian-speaking, live-in grandparents. She has an MA in Applied Linguistics from the University of Massachusetts, Boston. She currently works for the Center for Applied Linguistics as a writer-researcher for the ACCESS for ELLs assessment administered by the WIDA consortium. Her classroom experience spans Montessori kindergarten, dual immersion (Spanish) kindergarten, K-6 pull-out ESL, adult ESL and EFL, and elementary EFL in the ex-Soviet Republic of Georgia. Marisa and her husband use both Spanish and English with their two young sons, with some Italian and Georgian thrown in for good measure.