Lost (and Found) in Translation: Literacy Lessons for Teachers
I spent part of my summer in South America, immersing myself in Spanish and learning more about the culture. I've learned that Argentines often sound like Italians, and that Chileans speak way too fast for me to understand. I've seen my share of majestic Andean landscapes and polluted urban centers. The food was great and the people were warm and welcoming. It felt like a vacation—but now that I'm back, I realize it was professional development, too.
Take the afternoon I read an Argentinian newspaper article on carbon monoxide-related deaths. The text was far above my Spanish reading level, so I had to go back over most paragraphs three or four times. The experience suggested important implications for my instruction.
As I read the article, I could make guesses about some unfamiliar words because of the similar spelling to their counterparts in English or in French (another language I'm only mildly familiar with). Empleado is employee; provincia is province; intoxicación is intoxication; and morir , like the French mourir ...
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