Biliterate Writing from the Start

  • Title:Biliterate Writing from the Start: The Literacy Squared Approach to Asset-Based Writing Instruction
  • Author:Sandra Butvilofsky, Ph.D., Kathy Escamilla, Ph.D., Susan Hopewell, Ph.D.
  • Publication Date:August 2023
  • ISBN:9781934000472
  • Publisher:Brookes Publishing

Developed by highly respected experts through nearly two decades of research, this book shows bilingual educators how to use the Literacy Squared model to design effective writing instruction that places Spanish and English side by side. Focusing on emerging bilinguals in Grades K–5, this research-based guide supports educators through every step of planning and implementing biliterate writing instruction and monitoring student progress. Educators will learn proven strategies for teaching writing in tandem with other language arts skills, and they’ll get an invaluable Literacy Squared Writing Rubric to help them assess children’s developing writing in both Spanish and English.

A must for teachers, administrators, and leadership teams, this book prepares readers to deliver high-quality bilingual writing instruction—starting from the earliest years of school.


  • Discover how an asset-based approach to biliterate writing helps students’ skills flourish in both languages
  • Make cross-language connections to help students connect what they know in one language with what they’re learning in another
  • Learn how and why explicit teaching of oracy enhances writing development in both Spanish and English
  • Learn about a highly effective strategy for helping students develop cross-language metalinguistic awareness
  • Get practical, grade-specific guidance for nurturing biliterate writing in kindergarten, Grades 1–2, and Grades 3–5
  • Link writing standards to Social Justice Standards to help students problem solve, think critically, and advocate for positive change

PRACTICAL MATERIALS: In each chapter, Key Terms, Guiding Questions, and Reflection and Action Questions help readers retain important points and put their new knowledge into practice. Educators will also get sample biliteracy units, student work examples, and lessons from real classrooms to guide their writing instruction.

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