I had the privilege of attending CABE last week for one day, and boy, do I wish I could have attended every day! When I talk about bilingual education, it often feels like I have to sell it to my audience. They sometimes view it as an obscure, designer offshoot, akin to Waldorf or Montessori in their minds. Or, all too often, bilingual education is met with suspicion because it helps minorities “too much.” What a breath of fresh air, then, to be in the presence of 5000+ educators who have drunk the Koolaid of bilingual education, and share my passion for it!
I was able to attend two workshops, which were a joy for different reasons. The first was led by Jose Luis Orozco, a well-known children’s musician. My two kids love his music, so rich with Spanish language and culture, and it was heartwarming to be in a room where code-switching was frequent and welcome. The second workshop, lead by Allison Briceno of San Jose State University, identified three areas that impact early biliteracy, and contexts for identifying how to better support students as they learn to read in two languages.
Finally, it was a joy to see Maya and Kristie in person, since we’re in three totally different metropolitan areas, and to meet some of our professional developers for the first time. For those of you who have never attended CABE in the past, I highly recommend putting it on your calendar for next year. Besides being a one-stop-shop for resources, if you’re feeling discouraged by what seems to be a thankless job, it will give you a shot in the arm, encouraging you to keep doing the amazing work you do!