Co-constructing beliefs about parental involvement: Rehearsals and reflections in a family literacy program

Ariana Mangual Figueroa, Sora Suh, Meredith Byrnes

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


This article examines the ways in which participants in a six-week family literacy program-graduate students, immigrant parents, and their children-co-constructed a set of norms for appropriate parental involvement during a role-play activity in which they rehearsed placing and receiving phone calls between parents and school staff. The findings highlight an important tension: on the one hand, the graduate students' actions and stances during the role-plays reveal a set of normative beliefs about what constitutes competent parental behavior in schooling contexts; on the other hand, the graduate students' participation in the program was formative in challenging and extending (not simply reproducing) those beliefs. The authors suggest that graduate students' initial stances, and their shifting beliefs, can be situated along a continuum of understanding-viewing teachers' beliefs along such a continuum can help teacher educators to support them in developing more culturally-sustaining modes of teaching when working alongside immigrant families.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)44-58
Number of pages15
JournalLinguistics and Education
StatePublished - Sep 1 2015

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Language and Linguistics
  • Education
  • Linguistics and Language


  • Competence
  • Funds of knowledge
  • Immigration
  • Parent involvement
  • Teacher belief


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