Home Languages in the Classroom

September 23 – December 20, 2019


Essential Question: How can I set up routines and learning activities that promote the use of home languages in my classroom?

The purpose of this course is to create an online Professional Learning Community that supports participants’ collaboration and fosters ownership of their learning. Over the course of 15 weeks, participants engage in 6 online asynchronous modules that each consist of 3 sections: Explore, Make it Work, and Share. They select ideas to try out in their classrooms and share their experiences with colleagues in online discussion boards and two online synchronous meetings. To earn the certificate of completion, participants must complete each module, post on the Share discussion board for each module, respond to at least two colleagues’ posts for each module, and complete pre- and post-course surveys. The estimated time needed to complete the course is 20 hours.

Guiding Questions

  • What are some warm-up activities that bring home languages into my classroom?
  • How can I leverage the use of home languages when studying vocabulary?
  • How can I structure learning activities that require two or more languages, even if I am not in a bilingual school?
  • How can I help learners reflect upon their own multilingualism?
  • How can I encourage conversations about the language use of our students, families and communities?



By the end of the course, participants will be able to:

  • Articulate best practices for teaching multilingual learners related to the use of their home languages to support learning and achievement
  • Implement routines and learning activities that promote the use of home languages in their own classrooms
  • Collaborate with school teams to promote the use of home languages across the school community


Course Schedule

Asynchronous Online Component

  • SEP 23-29, Welcome and Getting Started
  • SEP 30 – OCT 13, Module 1 – Home Languages Warm-Ups
  • OCT 14-27, Module 2 – Home Languages Vocabulary Routines
  • OCT 28 – NOV 10, Module 3 – Bilingual Input and Output
  • NOV 11-24, Module 4 – Reflecting on Bilingual Brains
  • NOV 25 – DEC 3, Module 5 – Documenting Multilingualism
  • DEC 9-20, Module 6 – Synthesis of Learning and Final Steps

Synchronous Live Webinars

  • OCT 29, 2:30 p.m. – 3:30 p.m.
  • DEC 17, 2:30 p.m. – 3:30 p.m.



This course is designed for all teachers of multilingual learners.


Jennifer Daniels, WIDA Professional Learning Specialist

Jen Daniels serves educators who work with language learners by collaborating with WIDA colleagues to design and deliver professional learning opportunities. Jen’s teaching experience includes high school language arts and ESL, graduate teacher education courses, and professional learning and coaching for in-service K-12 teachers (ESL, bilingual, and general education). She holds a master’s degree in Curriculum and Instruction (ESOL) and a doctorate in Educational Leadership and Policy Studies focused on language program leadership.

Act 48

The Center for Schools and Communities, as a division of the Central Susquehanna Intermediate Unit, offers Act 48 professional development credit for those with Pennsylvania teaching or administrative certificates. To receive credit, participants MUST attend session(s) from beginning to end and list their professional personnel ID (PPID) number on the appropriate Act 48 paperwork provided onsite at the conference registration desk. Retrieve your PPID number from PERMS and bring it with you to the conference.