Date of Award


Document Type

Thesis - Open Access

First Advisor

Denisha Jones

Second Advisor

Patricia Virella

Third Advisor

Jerusha Beckerman


This paper is a testament to the sociocultural importance of bilingualism in mainstream U.S. classrooms, specifically pertaining to the Spanish language and communities in which there is a large percentage of Spanish speakers. Approximately 13% of Americans are native Spanish speakers, this is equivalent to 40 million people. States like Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, and Texas can boast populations that include over 1 million Hispanic people (United States Census Bureau, 2019). However, our school curriculums do not reflect the large percentage of Spanish-speaking students who roam their hallways. I argue that traditional English as a second language curriculums are isolating and that in order to embrace a linguistically rich culture. Spanish must fight its way out of resource rooms and into the mainstream classroom where it will be celebrated alongside English as an equally valued mode of expression. Both native English speakers and native Spanish speakers have so much to gain by the productive co-existence and mutual celebration of each language.