Hurdling over language barriers: Building relationships with adolescent newcomers through literacy advancement
Adolescents who are newcomers in a country and beginning to acquire English as an additional language are often in secondary classrooms with teachers who do not speak their languages. Due to these communication obstacles, there is a great need for teachers to build relationships with their students while setting optimal conditions for literacy development across languages (e.g., English and Spanish) and domains (e.g., oral, written, and digital communication). Guided by tenets of culturally and linguistically responsive pedagogy, the authors describe how two self‐identifying monolingual English‐speaking teachers formed relationships with high school newcomers during a summer literacy institute. The authors highlight three specific literacy activities that facilitated students’ oral, written, and digital literacy skills in both English and Spanish while also creating a space for caring relationships to form between students and teachers.