Plaza Familia is Dedicated to Supporting Bilingual Families!

         It is with great excitement that I introduce you to the new blog and print magazine dedicated to bilingual families.  I will be contributing a weekly post from the middle school educator perspective along with some of your favorite bilingual bloggers, writers, and educators.      The purpose of Plaza Familia is to educate the Hispanic community living in the United States on the resources that are available in order to empower them to advocate on their children's behalf academically.  We find that informed parents make better decisions about how to support their children within a scholastic environment.     Although the blog and magazine are geared towards the Latin community, the information that is being shared can be useful to all parents.  All of us who are lending our expertise to the project are parents and educators who are thoroughly invested in seeing children succeed and bridging the gap between the community and the local school.     We would greatly … [Read more...]

Celebrate Children’s Day!

There are many traditions that we value from our childhoods that still resonate with us as adults.  Especially when those memories were good ones, we reminisce about them fondly and try to share these experiences with our children as parents.  Having lived in Spain until the age of 8 and then New York City up until now, I have had the privilege of celebrating and sharing in a variety of traditions.  One particular tradition that I have happy memories of is Children's Day. Children's Day is a traditional  holiday that is celebrated throughout the world on various days.  It is especially popular in many Latin American countries.  In Mexico, it is celebrated on April 30th.  The meaning behind this holiday is setting aside a special day to recognize the importance of children and the role that they play in society.  We can all agree that children are very important in society and they bring a lot of joy and love to their families as well as others who come in contact with them … [Read more...]

Improving Latino Graduation Rates Through Parental Involvement

As an educator, I cannot even begin to stress the importance of parental involvement to a child's academic success.  This is especially true for Latino students who face a myriad of unique obstacles that are not faced by other students.  At the forefront of some of these obstacles is the language barrier that some of them struggle with due to not having a command of the English language.  They are often caught between speaking Spanish at home to their family and attempting to become fluent in a second language at school. Sometimes Latino parents are discouraged from taking part in their child's academic progress because language barriers and social class issues prevent them from having the confidence to be proactive in their education.  Schools need to adopt more flexible academic programs that take into account the diversity of the communities that they are servicing.  This will open many doors for those children who have parents that are not able to expose them to traditional … [Read more...]