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MIFGASHIM  June 2009

MIFGASHIM June 2009

Subject:

Mifgashim Volume 8 Issue 75

From:

Lee Buckman <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

[log in to unmask]

Date:

Wed, 3 Jun 2009 11:39:12 +0300

Content-Type:

text/plain

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

text/plain (168 lines)

Mifgashim Volume 8 Issue 75


Contents:

1.	Query:  Teachers for Dissertation Research (Beliak)

2.	Responses:  Ordained Female Orthodox Rabbi (Kaganoff)

3.	Responses:  What’s the Scoop on Foreign Language Teaching? (Gadot)

4.	The Marshall Memo: Teaching Languages Separately in Two-Way Bilingual Programs


~~~~~~~~~


1.	Query:  Teachers for Dissertation Research (Beliak)


My name is Tamara Beliak. I am a student at Azrieli. As a graduate of Azrieli I am hoping 
that you might be willing to help me recruit teachers for my dissertation research on 
teacher planning.
       
I am looking to recruit teachers who would be willing to be interviewed about their 
planning process. The interviews would take place over the summer. I am based in the 
New York area but willing to drive or fly to interview teachers in other parts of the United 
States.

The topic is: Pedagogical Content Knowledge of Middle School Navi teachers who teach 
Shoftim (Judges) or Shmuel Bet (Samuel II). I am interested in interviewing teachers who 
have had at least 2 full years of teaching experience of these texts and who have good 
reputations at your school.

The teachers will be interviewed for a total of two hours about their planning process and 
beliefs about teaching. I would be honored to have your recommendations for candidates.

Interviews will be fully confidential. While I would be happy to share the final study with 
you, I will not be able to share specific information about the responses of individual 
teachers.

If you have any further questions about the study or have names of potential candidates, 
please at 917-859-4672 or [log in to unmask] Or you may contact my advisor Dr. 
Shani Bechhofer at 212-960-5400 x5435, [log in to unmask]

Tamara Beliak
Azrieli Graduate School
[log in to unmask]


~~~~~~~~~


2.	Responses:  Ordained Female Orthodox Rabbi (Kaganoff)


If Rabbis Bin-nun, Sperber and Maroof had written responsa permitting the use of 
electricity on Shabbat or doing away with the Mechitza in the Synagogue how would those 
teshuvot have been accepted within the Orthodox Jewish communities?

Yonatan Kaganoff
[log in to unmask]


~~~~~~~~~


3.	Responses:  What’s the Scoop on Foreign Language Teaching? (Gadot)


The sooner we start teaching our students Hebrew, the better. The fact that we have 
more and more children that finish day school not having mastered Hebrew has been 
known for a while. 
 
Little children need to be taught by teams and songs.  As for older students, you need to 
address their issues, touch their world and they will respond. 
 
Vered Gadot
Beren Academy
Houston, TX
[log in to unmask]


~~~~~~~~~


4.	The Marshall Memo: Teaching Languages Separately in Two-Way Bilingual Programs

This article touts the effectiveness of dual-immersion programs, citing research on 
students’ superior academic achievement in both languages. 

The author stresses the importance of keeping the two languages separate rather than 
using them intermittently within a school day. “Language can become entangled through 
code switching – in which the pronunciation, grammar, and syntax, or spelling of the two 
languages are mixed intermittently – or through consecutive translation, in which text is 
translated word-for-word from one language to another.” 

There are three approaches to keeping the two languages separate in dual-language 
programs:

• Division by time – For example, Monday is Spanish-speaking day, Tuesday is English-
speaking day, etc., or the afternoon is Spanish and morning is English. A sign on the door 
might remind students which language is in use: “Today we speak in English” or 
Hablamos en Español hoy.”

• Division by content – For example, today math, social studies, and science will be in 
Spanish and literacy will be in English. A unit on fractions might begin in English on 
Monday and continue in Spanish on Tuesday. “The overall goal,” the author explains, “is 
for students to develop a broader understanding of fractions in both languages without 
wasting time translating information from one language to the other.”

• Division by staff – Two teachers, each strong in a different language, team-teach and 
students use the primary language of the teacher who is leading the class at a given 
time.

What happens if students use the “wrong” language? 

Dual immersion teachers usually accept whatever language the student chooses to use 
(especially in the early grades), but if it’s not the language of instruction at that moment, 
the teacher paraphrases what the student said in the language of instruction.

There are two competing theories of how two languages are stored and processed in the 
brain, the language independence model and the language interdependence model. 
Whichever turns out to be correct, the author argues that teachers in dual-language 
programs should distribute the two languages equally in the classroom and the 
curriculum, specifically:

• Give each language equal importance in both curriculum and instruction, with 
comparable amounts of materials and resources available in each language and student 
work in both languages displayed.

• Encourage students to produce equal amounts of oral and written work in each language 
and to not mix languages within schoolwork.

• Encourage students to become equally proficient in both languages.

• Make the curriculum content rich in both languages, with language acquisition 
opportunities interwoven with content instruction in multiple disciplines. Bilingual students 
should be expected to achieve high standards in each discipline and in both languages. 

“The Balancing Act of Bilingual Immersion” by Samina Hadi-Tabassum in Educational 
Leadership, December 2004/January 2005 (Vol. 62, #4, p. 50-54), link available at 
www.makassed.org/Article/the%20balancing%20all.pdf

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