Academic language, the register necessary to be successful in school, has been widely studied in recent years. Researchers have devoted much energy to defining the construct of academic language and identifying ways that teachers can support students - particularly those learning two languages simultaneously - as they develop it. Several scholars have suggested that identifying the academic language demands of content curricula and classroom contexts is a productive first step in demystifying academic language for teachers and students. In this article, therefore, the researcher reports findings from a yearlong qualitative case study in a first grade dual language program. The researcher's analysis centers on the explicit and implicit academic language demands of the curriculum, as well as teachers' understandings of and expectations about the role of academic language in their classrooms. These findings have implications that extend beyond dual language programs to mainstream classrooms with emergent bilingual students in them.
Early Childhood Education
Dual Language Programs