The first major snowstorm of 2014 happened to be heading to Central and Eastern Massachusetts today, so the TWIN-CS Blogger decided to venture out to get some necessary shopping done before the storm hit. While gathering milk, eggs, and other sundries, she couldn't help but be struck by the fact that she was hearing Spanish, specifically what sounded like Puerto Rican Spanish, far more than English in this large grocery store. She knows enough Spanish to understand the customers were gathering the same things she was, for the same reasons. The storm might be done Friday, but who wants to go out Saturday? Let's get enough cereal for the kids to last the weekend, mamas said to abuelas. "Excuse me," two younger men said to the Blogger, in English, as they passed by her in the bread aisle. Then they turned their attention to the older gentleman with them, asking him whether he wanted blanca bread or not.
This is the world of our TWIN students. They are the linguistic and cultural translators for their parents and grandparents, as youth in their position have been for generations. What a powerful set of tools TWIN schools are providing when they fully enable students to be bilingual and biliterate (and indeed bicultural) in two languages. So when storms hit in the future, and they will, TWIN students will be leaders in our communities, helping us all be more prepared.