Interview on Bam Radio’s Principal Street: Transforming Schools for Multilingual Learners

How can we enhance how we teach multilingual learners using a strengths-based approach? It was an honor to listen to Grace Delgado from Aldine ISD discuss the steps that her district took and is taking to transform its practices based on Transforming Schools for Multilingual Learners. Listen to the interview …

Slow Down Seabiscuit

Gather a group of educators together and we find ourselves recounting the crazy life experiences that we routinely have going at full speed – regardless of what our role is. All my adventures came to a screeching halt in September when I had a total hip replacement (THR).  After years …

7 Professional Growth Resources for Working with Students Living with Adversity

School superintendents, principals, teachers, specialists, support staff, and others are becoming much more aware of the epic number of students experiencing adversity in the form of trauma, violence, and chronic stress.  However, many of us are not familiar with the steps that we should take to support our instructional programming. …

Transforming Policies, Practices, and Structures for Multilingual Learners’ Success

With the school year well underway, many of us want to modify the language education programming we are providing multilingual learners [MLs]. One reason we want to do this is to ensure that we are following state and federal guidelines to identify MLs and determine or strengthen the programming that’s …

Three Strategies to Strengthen Partnerships with Families of Multilingual Learners

By Debbie Zacarian We all know the importance of family engagement. Whether we work with two parents, a single parent, foster parent, grandparent, stepparent, custodial parent, extrafamilial member, and others, we understand that every family constellation is essential to children’s development. While we might believe strongly in family engagement, we …

Drawing from Strengths

When Alina was 11 years old, she moved to the United States from Irpin, Ukraine with her mother and younger brother to live with distant relatives. The Russian invasion resulted in their witnessing the destruction of their city and the death of family members. As Alina enrolls in school, we learn …

Teaching to Strengths: 5 Practices for Supporting Students Living with Adversity

Interested in learning more about practices for supporting students living with adversity? Listen in as Dr. Jobi Lawrence and Dr. Debbie Zacarian discuss the topic of teaching to empower and share a call to action to foster student agency, self-confidence, and collaboration. This episode of ASSETS is part of a …

Please Join! Webinar: Transforming Schools for Multilingual Learners

Please join this free webinar hosted by the National Association of English Learner Program Administrators and sponsored by TransAct on Thursday, Jan 19, 2023, 4:00 — 5:30 PM EST. Register here! Are you seeking support in building, strengthening, and sustaining effective language assistance programming for multilingual learners? This webinar will …

Leaders Coaching Leaders Podcast on Transforming Schools for Multilingual Learners

It was an honor to be interviewed by Peter Dewitt, host of the Leaders Coaching Leaders podcast about the second edition of Transforming Schools for Multilingual Learners: A comprehensive guide for educators. During the podcast, Peter asks about the reasons for writing a new edition and using a strengths-based approach. …

2nd Edition Transforming Schools for Multilingual Learners: A Comprehensive Guide for Educators

Available for Pre-Purchase! Essential principles, practices, and structures for multilingual learners A lot has changed in the ten years since this book was first published. This celebrated triumph provided state, district, school, and teacher leaders with a comprehensive guide to support multilingual learners to reach their full potential. The key messages that …

Two New ‘Zip Guides’ on Social-Emotional Learning and Essentials for Engaging Families

TESOL Press just released two new publications. Social-Emotional Learning for English Learners [SEL] (Zacarian, 2022) and the Essentials for Engaging Families of English Learners (Zacarian, 2022). These two zip guides are the first of their kind for TESOL Press. Each includes six 8.5×11 laminated folded panels that distill key principles …

Interview on Responsive Schooling for Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Students

This interview is based on the book Responsive Schooling for Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Students co-written with scholar Ivannia Soto. We are grateful that it has achieved best-selling status. It is used in university & professional growth settings about culturally responsive practices. Listen to the interview at https://tinyurl.com/trmc74

Going Beyond Crises

Tan Huynh is a highly regarded teacher of multilingual learners. His popular podcast, Teaching MLs provides the opportunity to listen to the thoughts, ideas, and experiences of the most current leaders in the field. I had the pleasure of being interviewed by Tan about Beyond Crises: Overcoming Linguistic and Cultural …

As Schools Reopen, A New Inclusive Paradigm is Needed

By Debbie Zacarian and Becki Cohn-Vargas As one school year ends and we plan for the next, we see the glaring inequities that the pandemic has amplified, and we recognize that steps must be taken to address them.  Beyond adopting new guidelines for hygiene and reducing our schools’ exposure to …

From Deficits to Assets

This Q&A with editor Dan Alpert and co-authors Debbie Zacarian and Diane Staehr Fenner first appeared in languagemagazine.com on January 22, 2020. That piece is titled From Deficit-Based to Assets-Based: Breaking Down the Wall One Essential Shift at a Time and is based on the first chapter of the best selling …

Video: 3 Trauma-Informed Priorities

by Debbie Zacarian

This short video describes the rationale for using a strengths-based approach to support students living with adversity and includes three classroom-based strategies. The video originally appeared as part of a project for ASCD on “Trauma-Informed Practices”.