How Schools Can Support Immigrant Students and Families

Reflection Questions: How to Support Immigrant Students and Families

How to Support Immigrant Students and Families: Strategies for Schools and Early Childhood Programs

These reflection questions accompany the Colorín Colorado resource guide, How to Support Immigrant Students and Families: Strategies for Schools and Early Childhood Programs.

This list includes questions that can be used before, during, and after reading the guide, as well as in discussion with colleagues.

Reflection Questions: Part I

Before reading through the strategies included in our guide on how to support immigrant students and families, you may wish to start with a list of reflection questions about your current role and setting. As you read through the questions and the guide, look for ways that you might expand your “sphere of influence” (Staehr Fenner, 2015), one conversation and meeting at a time.

Reflection Before Reading

  • What are the strengths of our school/district/program in supporting immigrant families?
  • What could we improve?
  • What are our students'/families' strengths?
  • What are their challenges?
  • Who are our partners and allies at the school, district, program, and community level?

Reflection While Reviewing Strategies

  • Are we already doing this strategy?
  • If so, what are some examples?
  • If not, what are some small steps we could take to work towards this strategy?
  • Which stakeholders need to be involved when considering this strategy?
  • What are some challenges in implementing this strategy?
  • How can we address those challenges?
  • What are some potential benefits from achieving this strategy?

Note: See related questions in our end-of-year reflection article.

Reflection Questions Part II

Here are some questions to help you pull out some key points from this in-depth information, as well as think more deeply about your own role.

We conclude this guide with the question we asked at the beginning – how can you expand your sphere of influence? As the examples in the guide illustrate, educators of ELLs and immigrants are finding new, creative answers to that question every day.

Reflection After Reading

  • Which strategies seem most promising and why?
  • What steps can we take to work towards those strategies?
  • Which strategies can we implement in the next month? In the next year?
  • What are some additional strengths of our team, school, district, students or families that occurred to me while reading?
  • What are some additional challenges?
  • What opportunities might those challenges present?
  • What areas of support are most critical for our families currently?
  • Who are some allies in the school, district, or community who can support this work?

Personal Reflection

  • What are some things I can do personally to support my immigrant students and families?
  • What are my goals in terms of this work?
  • What are my strengths?
  • What are the challenges I face?
  • What professional activities, networks, resources, and connections can I pursue to support this work, both within and beyond my setting?
  • How can I bring this work or my students’ lives and experiences into the curriculum somehow?
  • What are some changes I would like to see in my school, district, or community?
  • What can I do to help make that change?
  • What gives me hope?
  • How can I take care of myself while doing this work?
  • What is an example of a time when I made a difference in the life of a student?






See our complete reference list for works cited in this article.