Successful Strategies for Teaching English Language Acquisition and Literacy Development Grades K-8
EECI Seminars 2008www.eeciseminars.com
Presented byFay Shin, Ph.D.ProfessorCalifornia State University, Long BeachDepartment of Teacher Educationfshin@csulb.edu
In the U.S., one of the growing populations in school-aged students is English language learners (ELLs), showing an approximately 170 percent increase over the last two decades.
As a group, English language learners represent one the growing population groups in school-aged students in the U.S. Today there are 9.9 million students classified as English language learners in public schools, with roughly 5.5 million students classified as LEP by means of English proficiency assessment. Over 400 different languages are collectively spoken, though Spanish is the first language approximately 80 percent of these students.
By 2015, it is projected that 30 percent of the students in this nation will be English language learners, consisting of students who immigrated before kindergarten and children of immigrants who were born in the U.S.
Identify students English proficiency levels according to the required national, state or district ELD/ESL standards
National ESL Standards (TESOL): Beginning (Level 1)Intermediate (Level 2)Advanced (Level 3)
Compare stages of language acquisition to identified ELD/ESL proficiency levelsPre-production Early production
Speech emergenceLevel 2 Intermediate
Intermediate fluencyLevel 3 AdvancedLevel 1Beginning
Second language acquisition
A. Language is acquired when it is meaningful. B. Comprehensible input is required.
We acquire language when we understand the messages or obtain Comprehensible Input (Krashen, 1988)
Order for ELD Instructional Medium
*Realia*Photos*Drawings*Written Word*Oral Word
We acquire language when we understand the messages or obtain Comprehensible Input (Krashen, 1988)
Primary language vs. second language as a medium of instruction?
time on task theory
C. Affective variables relate to the success in second language acquistion.1. Affective variables: MotivationSelf-confidenceAnxiety
2. When teaching English language learners, teachers need to remember to keep the learners affective filter low
D. Academic Language1. Cognitively demanding and complex concepts need to be taught through sheltered instruction or SDAIE (Specially Designed Academic Instruction in English)2. Content area instruction provides challenging vocabulary and gives ELLs the opportunity to keep up in subject matter. Instruction must be comprehensible.
Important components for an ESL programESL time must occur dailyIncludes instruction focusing on needs for specific ESL levelsStudents are grouped according to ESL proficiency levels and needsMinimum 45 minutesEncourages oral participationBuilds on students prior knowledge and experiences
What is important for ELD Instruction?SDAIE (Specially Designed Academic Instruction in English) or Sheltered instructional strategiesComprehensible inputTime for independent reading (or self-selected /pleasure reading)
SDAIE Strategies for the ELD ClassroomSpeak slowlyLots of visuals and realiaContext embeddedManipulatives and hands-onActivate prior knowledgeLimit teacher-centered lecturesTPR (total physical response)
Focus on the meaning, not the formGraphic organizersPreview-reviewAlternative assessmentComprehensible inputIndependent reading opportunities
Activities for Language Acquisition Stages
Pre-production (Beginning - Level 1)Characteristics: Students have very little comprehensionNo verbal productionActivities: Use lots of visual aids and slow speech. Oral production not forced. Key words written on board. TPR (Total Physical Response)Use realia.Student tasks include:listeningphysical actionsdrawinggesturingmatching Examples of questions:Find the.Point to the..Walk to the..
Early Production (Beginning -Level 1)
Characteristics: Students have limited comprehensionone or two word responses. Activities: picturesrole playingcharts and graphslabelsStudent tasks include:One or two word responses.Naming, labelingListingCategorizingYes/no answersExamples of questionsWhere is the.?Is this a table? Yes or no?What color is the?
Speech Emergence (Intermediate - Level 2)
Characteristics: Good comprehensionSimple sentences with limited vocabularyMany errors in grammar, syntax and pronunciationActivities:Matching, classifyingGamesGroup discussionsCharts and tablesStudent tasks:Small group workSummarizingDescribing and explainingRole playingComplete sentencesRetellingExamples of questions:Tell me aboutWhy did the.Describe.What do you think.How did the boy feel.
Intermediate Fluency (Advanced -Level 3)Characteristics:Excellent comprehensionFew grammar errorsAppears fluent when speaking, but has problems with high level academics and literacyActivities:ParaphrasingUse SDAIE strategiesJournalsOral discussionsLanguage experience Outlining and mappingNewspaper articlesStudent tasks:AnalyzingPredictionGive instructionsGiving opinions, justifyingReading and writingExamples of questions:Compare (the lion and the tiger.)Contrast (the desert and the rain forest)Which do you prefer? Why?How do you think this story will end?
Distance from the sun (in millions of miles)
Pluto- 3,688 (pretend it is still a planet)Neptune 2,794 Uranus 1784Saturn 887Jupiter 483Mars 142Earth 93Venus 67Mercury 36
Quick Start GuideThis is an example of explicit directions and questions for how a lesson plan card can be used. It is intended to be only a guideline for a person not familiar with the program to demonstrate one way of teaching it. Topic: Zoo Animals (ELD Lesson Plan Card 3.1 Level A)Whole Group (Levels 1, 2 and 3) InstructionIntroduction/Background/Motivation:Introduce zoo animals and vocabulary using picture cards, stuffed animals, photographs, books, videos, realia (real objects), or actual animals if possible. For example, to motivate students:bring an animal (like a snake or bird) into the classroom and let students touch or hold it. Bring different kinds and sizes of stuffed animals or animal figurines and put them in the front of the classAsk students to bring their favorite stuffed animal to class. Show pictures of a zoo and ask students if they have ever been to the zoo.Ask students: How many of you have been to the zoo before?What animals have you seen at the zoo?What do you do at the zoo?Record responses on chart paper. Make a table or draw a cluster map representing the answers.
Read a book about animals or the zoo. Using the book A Trip to the Zoo, show the front cover and ask students if they can predict what the book is about. Say and ask students questions such as: I am going to read a book. Does anybody know what this book is going to be about?Why do you think the book is going to be about _______?
Beginning (Level 1)Some vocabulary words for zoo animals: elephant, lion, alligator, bear, eating.
Guided Instruction: Using realia (real objects), visuals or picture cards, point to the animal and identify them several times. Say the words and enunciate each word slowly and clearly.(Teacher points as she says the following):This is an elephant. Say elephant.Is this a lion?(pointing to the elephant picture). No. This is an elephant.This is a lion. (point to a lion)Is this a lion? Yes. This is an alligator. This is a bear. (Repeat with different animals)What animal is this? Point to the alligator. What color is the bear?What is the bear eating?
Intermediate (Level 2) and Advanced (Level 3)
Vocabulary words: fur, wings, trunk, scale, sharp(Note: These words are in addition to the Beginning- Level 1 vocabulary. Review vocabulary words for Level 1 first)Guided Instruction:Introduce vocabulary words pointing to the pictures.Lions have fur. Do you know other animals that have fur?This elephant has a trunk. Do you have a trunk? Does a lion have a trunk?Birds have wings. Have students identify and classify the animals. Which animals have fur?Which animals have wings?Which animals have a trunk?Ask students to come up and show the class an animal you name.Sally, where is the lion? Come to the front and hold it for me.Juan, where is the alligator? Come to the front and hold it for me.Who is holding the bear? Which animal do you like? If you like lions, come and stand next to Sally.Tell me about this bear.Describe what a giraffe looks like.What do you think about alligators?Why do you think a giraffe has a long neck?Why do you think alligators have sharp teeth?Why do you think bears have lots of fur?Which animals do you like? Why?Which animal would you prefer? Why?Compare an elephant and a giraffe.
Language Experience Approach activityChoose a topic (zoo animals, lions, our favorite animals, etc.)Write the title or topic on chart paper or a white board.Ask students to create a story or give you sentences about the topic.Write the sentences on the chart paper. When you are finished, read the sentences to the class slowly and clearly.Read it again but ask students to read it with you.Ask students to read it on their own if they can (silently or outloud)Ask students to copy the sentences on a piece of paper. Have students illustrate their own paper.Example of a Language Experience activity: Zoo animalsThere are lots of animals at the zoo. I like the lions. I like elephants.Lions have fur.Elephants are big and have trunks. Take-home book: Small and Big AnimalsPass out copies of the take-home book. Fold and staple them together.Read the take home book to the students. Repeat and ask students to read it with you. Have students read the take home book silently.Have students color the pictures and complete the activity on the last page (let students work independently, in pairs, or in groups if they choose)
Integrating poetry/language arts in the content areaACROSTIC POEMSVolatile explosionOccasionally eruptsLava over rocksCan we get out of the way?Ash can come out tooNot safeOh my! By Randy Drumm
Acrostic Poems Generates differences sEquence of DNA No two alike chromosomE by Vicente Perez
WarmExtreme weatherAir pressureThunder stormHeat waveEvaporateRain storms by Steve Vang
BIO PoemsI am ________I feel _______I think ________I like ________I dont like ______I have _________________I ___________
Example: I am (a lion, the sun, an apple, winter)I am (the sun)I feel (hot )I think (people like me)I like (to make the earth warm)I am (made of hydrogen and helium)I provide energyI provide heatI provide light
WORD What I think it means Definition What it means to me
Dialogue journals benefit children because:Students receive an individual reply from their teacher (Hae Joon)Students experiment with writing in English or the second language in a meaningful context (Elena)Build communication skillsBuild authentic literacy skillsStudents choose their own topics
Dialogue journals benefit teachers because:It provides a weekly developmental record of the childs writingModels writing in an authentic contextHelps children make the connection between oral and written languageLearn about the child and his/her interests
Dialogue journals as a tool for writing instruction for English Language LearnersELLs need more guidance and collaborative writing opportunitiesELLs need to have an opportunity to feel free to write and express themselves without their writing (spelling, grammar) being corrected Writing process, writers workshop, composing process (brainstorming/pre-write, draft, edit, revise, publish) is a separate component of writing instruction.
Vietnamese was my first language and it was tough trying to learn English. An instrumental person that helped develop my literacy is my sixth grade teacher Mr. Jones. Although I was only his student for a year, we built a friendship that grew outside of the classroom. He became a caring friend and a person I deeply admired. He helped me with my reading and writing abilities through the process of daily journal assignments. We had to write in our journal every day after lunchtime for approximately 10 minutes. Mr. Jones allowed us to free write about anything that we felt a desire for. I usually wrote about what I did at lunchtime, what I had for lunch or dinner last night, and sometimes I would write about what happened outside of school the previous day. Then Mr. Jones would read our entries and comment on them. Usually, he replied with thoughtful feedback and encouragement. This gave me the impression that he really did care about his students because some of my early grade teachers never responded to our writings.
This activity made me feel like I was having my own little conversations with Mr. Jones. I was so comfortable with Mr. Jones that I started to write personal things about my family. I really enjoyed that journal assignment because it allowed me to express my feelings and thoughts without having any restrictions or barriers. I often found myself not having enough time to write everything that I wanted to put on paper. I was also excited to see how Mr. Jones would respond to my entry each day. This assignment improved my literacy skills because I was eager to read and write. For the first time in my childhood, I wanted to read and write more than hanging out with my friends.Bobby NguyenLong Beach, CA September 2005
Writing Prompts/Journal TopicsWhat isWhat is your favourite holiday? What makes this holiday special? What is your favourite day of the week? What is your favourite month? Why? What if...What would happen if you could fly whenever you wanted? When would you use this ability? What would happen if there were no television? Why would this be good? bad? I wish...I wish I had a million... Then I would... I wish I had one... because I wish I could be like.... This person is special because.... I wish to be a ________ when I grow up. Then I will.... I wish there were a law that said..... This would be a good law because.... I wish I could forget the time I ..... because.... I wish trees could..... because.... I wish I could see...... because..... I wish I could hear...... I wish I