University of Toronto Press
Roma Chumak-Horbatsch Ph.D.
School of Early Childhood Education
Foreword by: Jim Cummins Ph.D.
Ontario Institute for Studies in Education
University of Toronto
This book looks at young immigrant children in a new way. Far more than learners of their new language – immigrant children are “bilinguals in the making” - who arrive in childcare centres and classrooms with unique language and literacy needs. To meet these needs, a new three-part classroom practice, called Linguistically Appropriate Practice or LAP is introduced. The first part of LAP provides important background information about immigrant children and addresses the following questions: Who are immigrant children? What characterizes their language circumstance? What is LAP? The second part of LAP focuses on preparing the classroom to launch LAP. It explores four tasks that are central to the adoption of LAP: transitioning immigrant children from home to classroom; partnering with families; using home languages in the classroom; and recording classroom language and literacy behaviours. The final part of LAP addresses the following question: How do we work with young children who arrive without proficiency in the classroom language? The early childhood practitioner will find over fifty exciting classroom activities that can be adapted to match the developmental level of the children and the classroom curriculum. The closing chapter looks to the future. It appeals to those working with immigrant children to turn their attention to this growing population, take their unique language and literacy needs into account and help them realize their bilingual potential.