Translanguaging during Collaborative Writing Tasks: Examining a Case of Secondary Emergent Bilinguals
Emergent Bilinguals make up a large part of the student population in the State of Texas and the U.S. as a whole. They face a variety of challenges, many of them inside the classroom. Consequently, it is crucial that EBs have at their disposal as many tools for learning as possible. One such tool is language, particularly access to their entire linguistic repertoire. However, implicit and explicit language policies at institutional and classroom levels sometimes deny students access to their whole repertoire. Therefore, this work will demonstrate the utility of permitting translanguaging in various forms for learning tasks within the classroom. This dissertation study explores how EBs use translanguaging in the process of composing persuasive essays within a collaborative writing pair inside the context of a secondary ESL classroom. As a qualitative case study, this dissertation examines the case of one writing pair consisting of two Spanish-English EBs and the written and spoken language that they produced during the data collection period, which spanned the writing process for one persuasive essay. Using multiple iterative cycles of coding and discourse analysis, this study examines the speech of the participants as they collaborated to engage in pre-writing and revising and editing. Their speech was also compared to their final written products which were themselves evaluated. This study found that translanguaging afforded students the ability to discuss the writing task, discuss the structure of the language used for the task, and discuss and navigate the technology used for the task.