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Journal Article

Rock Point Community School: An Example of a Navajo-English Bilingual Elementary School Program

Lillian Vorih and Paul Rosier
TESOL Quarterly
Vol. 12, No. 3 (Sep., 1978), pp. 263-269
DOI: 10.2307/3586053
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/3586053
Page Count: 7
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Rock Point Community School: An Example of a Navajo-English Bilingual Elementary School Program
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Abstract

At Rock Point Community School 90 percent or more of the children enter school either monolingual Navajo or Navajo dominant. Depending on the grade level, they receive from 70 to 25 percent less English instruction than they did in 1970 when all instruction was in English. However, they perform better on standardized English reading tests than do their peers elsewhere on the reservation who have been taught in monolingual English programs. Even more significantly, the 1975 scores topped the Rock Point scores of five years earlier when the reading scores were already higher than those of comparable schools elsewhere on the reservation. The paper discusses the details of the current bilingual curriculum, the evolved role of the Navajo Language Teacher versus the changed role of the English Language Teacher, the problems of teacher training and materials development, the effect of this bilingual program on the cognitive and affective development of the students, the effect of community participation in the school, and, in more detail, the scholastic results as measured by standardized tests.

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