“I felt valued”

Multilingual microteachings and the development of teacher agency in a teacher education classroom


  • Theresa Catalano University of Nebraska-Lincoln
  • Hanihani C. Traore Moundiba University of Nebraska-Lincoln
  • Hadi Pir University of Nebraska-Lincoln


translanguaging, microteachings, multilingual pedagogies, teacher education, teacher agency


While much research has been conducted on multilingual pedagogies needed to better serve emergent bi/multilingual students, there is little research that examines the use of multilingual pedagogies in language teacher education programs. This study fills this gap, using collaborative auto-ethnography to examine microteaching activities/reflections of three researcher/participants in a teacher education course on multilingualism.  The authors found that there were several challenges to implementing the multilingual pedagogies, and that understanding the theory behind the pedagogies was important. Moreover, the novice teachers were able to reflect on their own multilingual practices and felt valued in the process, which led them to have more empathy for their own multilingual students. The study also identifies the development of teacher agency which empowered teachers to try similar approaches in their own classrooms, and advocate for their multilingual students in a variety of contexts.

Author Biographies

Theresa Catalano, University of Nebraska-Lincoln

Catalano holds a PhD in Second Language Acquisition and Teaching from the University of Arizona. Currently, she is Associate Professor of Second Language Education/Applied Linguistics at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Her research focuses on language and migration, dual language education, multilingualism, and critical language studies. She teaches graduate/undergraduate courses on multimodal discourse analysis, linguistics, intercultural communication and multilingualism.  

Hanihani C. Traore Moundiba, University of Nebraska-Lincoln

Traore Moundiba is a doctoral student in the Department of Teaching, Learning, and Teacher Education at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.  She is currently working toward her doctorate degree in education while pursuing certification to teach high school French. Her research focuses on multilingualism and multilingual pedagogies.

Hadi Pir, University of Nebraska-Lincoln

Pir is a native speaker of Kurdish (Kurmanji) originally from Iraq, where he taught English and worked as a translator for the U.S. Army.  Currently, he teaches English as a Second Language at a local high school, and is a  co-founder of Yazda, a non-profit organization that helps women and children who have survived the Yazidi genocide.  He recently earned a Master's degree from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and plans to continue his studies there in the future. His research focuses on language rights as well as psychology and sociology.