BILINGUALTEK: An Integrated Science-Language Instructional Approach for Latinx Preschoolers

Principal Investigators

Mendez, L. (PI), Mcmillian, V. (Co-PI), Stage, V. (Co-PI), Hegde, A. (Co-PI), & Lee, T. (Co-PI).


This 4-year Early Design and Development project focused on the Learning Strand of the DRK-12 Program addresses the need to minimize differences in science learning opportunities faced by low-income Latinx preschoolers who are dual language learners (DLLs) through the development and pilot assessment of Bilingualtek (BT). BT is a multimedia-supported,  integrated science-language instructional approach incorporating linguistically-culturally responsive science shared readings into inquiry-based science activities  and designed to be implemented by monolingual preschool teachers serving this population. The project’s long-term objective is to foster academic achievement in Latinx DLLs by developing a synergetic science-language instructional approach that builds on the cultural and linguistic resources these children bring to their science learning experiences in early childhood classrooms. For the rest of our proposal we will use the term Latinx dual language learners (DLLs)  to refer to those children from low income households who are in the process of sequentially acquiring English while still developing language skills in the home language, Spanish.


This project seeks to design learning materials for Latinx preschoolers integrating science and language with scientific experiences and the creation of e-Books.

Preferred Citation

Mendez, L. (PI), Mcmillian, V. (Co-PI), Stage, V. (Co-PI), Hegde, A.(Co-PI), & Lee, T. (Co-PI). (2021).  Billingualtek: An Integrated Science-Language Approach for Latinx Preschoolers. National Science Foundation. ($204,017).


Project Goals

This project has three main objectives: 1) We will co-design (with preschool teachers and Latinx families) the instructional content and components that will best facilitate science learning by Latinx DLLs. 2) We will co-design (with teachers) learning materials to support teachers’ implementation of BT in their preschool classrooms. Both efforts will facilitate the gathering of data to inform the development and revision of the science and language instructional materials for children and teachers. 3) We will implement BT in 28 classrooms to examine its usability, feasibility, and preliminary efficacy, including child outcomes (Science Talk, science knowledge, and language skills) through a rigorous quasi-experimental field study. The treatment and control groups will each include 42 children and 14 teachers.


Project Period

September 2021-2025