Language and Literacy Acquisition

The UACM program, with support from US DOE OELA’s grant, “Quality Instruction for English Learners,” provides future and current educators with development on guiding young children’s language and literacy development within the classroom setting. All literacy courses meet on-site at partner institutions (elementary schools and summer camp) with culturally and linguistically diverse children to allow opportunities to practice literacy methods learned during class. Within the time devoted to class, university students learn about a method, try it out (with guidance and support), and have the opportunity to debrief immediately afterwards with the same course instructor who presented the initial methods content. Outside of class, they are reading about the method, watching video of experienced teachers engaging in the practice, creating their own lesson plans, and engaging in classroom-based action research projects.

UACM language and literacy experiences address questions such as:

  • What does effective literacy instruction look like in classrooms where cultural and linguistic diversity are treated as strengths?
  • How can teachers use oral language to facilitate student development of reading and writing print language?

Working from the understanding that it is the teacher that makes the biggest difference within educational contexts, language and literacy focused teacher preparation prioritizes activities that cultivate thoughtful professionals.

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