The experience of co-teaching for emergent Arabic-English literacy

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Qualitative Report


© 2019: Anna M. Dillon, Kay Gallagher, and Nova Southeastern University. In this paper we explore teachers' experiences of co-teaching within a new bilingual (Arabic/English) model in public Kindergarten schools in the United Arab Emirates. The main objective was to understand teachers' experiences with intercultural teaching for biliteracy in this context. We interviewed six pairs of co-teachers. These co-teachers represent six of the nationalities of teachers working in public Kindergartens in Abu Dhabi, thereby representing a cross-section of the cultural context of teaching in the reformed public schools. The data highlight teachers' varied co-teaching practices and point to aspects such as classroom management and translanguaging as aspects of classroom practice which are enhanced by co-teaching. Teachers' experience of co-teaching and well-formed co-teaching relationships can contribute to the development of sound pedagogical practices while a lack of administrative support can create conditions which are not conducive to co-teaching. The data also show that supportive bilingual scaffolding and flexible translanguaging are seen as effective components of co-teaching to support emergent biliteracy.

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Author First name, Last name, Institution

Anna M. Dillon, Zayed University
Kay Gallagher, Zayed University

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