ELL students are entitled to instructional and testing accommodations in the classroom, but selecting the appropriate accommodations can be an involved process that requires much thought and attention. It's important that teachers do everything in their power to make sure ELLs receive equal access to education. Visit our recommended bilingual books section. ELLs learn to express themselves with greater confidence when working in small teams. The Value of Speaking time 2: Communicate with the ESL teacher. They are constantly transferring what they know as acceptable behaviors from their own culture to the U. If students are having trouble with an activity, try to identify whether a new concept, set of directions, vocabulary word, or other element is causing the difficulty. Understanding how this language is similar to or different from English will help you focus on troublesome areas. ELLs may not have the same background knowledge as their English-speaking peers, especially when it comes to references to American culture and geography, such as the Grand Canyon or Martin Luther King Jr. With this in mind it is important to remember that many of the accommodations that can be made for ELL students can be applied when differentiating for student needs on a regular basis. ELLs may have a difficult time knowing which form of a word to use. When you approach your instructor to discuss your grade, he tells you that despite your lack of Spanish proficiency, you are expected to perform on the same level as your native Spanish-speaking peers. Make a commitment to be someone who bothers to get it right. Graphic Organizers Graphic organizers such as Venn diagrams, KWL Know, Want to know, Learned charts, double bubble maps for comparing and contrasting, sequence maps, and others can help students establish a purpose for reading. Educators and staff who work regularly with ELLs, as well as bilingual parents, may be a valuable source of information about language patterns or difficulties. Classroom Accommodations ELL students should be provided equitable access to the curriculum through the use of accommodations.
If you decide to assign each student in a team a role such as reporter, recorder, time keeper, and materials manager , you might want to rotate roles each week or by activity. These labels will also assist you when explaining or giving directions. When students know what to expect of their day, they are more comfortable. Nevertheless, it is important to balance between encouragement and error correction. Perhaps a vocabulary word has multiple meanings, a different meaning in each language, or the concept doesn't exist in one of the languages. Read Text Aloud Ideally, when you sat down to take your Spanish test, the instructor would have at least read the directions aloud so you'd have some idea where to begin. Provide students with frequent opportunities to work together, both in pairs and in small groups. Languages may differ in a number of aspects, such as phonetic sounds, pronunciation, grammar, word order, or sentence structure. Choosing Accommodations You decide to enroll in an evening beginner's Spanish course at your local community college to better communicate with the large Hispanic student population at your school. Keeping supplies, math manipulative materials, and reference books within reach of the students enables them to access what they need on their own. How prepared are you to teach these students? Avoid slang and idiomatic expressions. Students who have at least an intermediate level of English proficiency and who are literate in their native language will most benefit from this accommodation. Similarly, when providing students with reading materials, such as text books, chapter books, worksheets, or quiz and test directions, students with low to intermediate English proficiency should have most, if not all, of the text read aloud to them. Help students by providing a model of how to use sounds, structures, and vocabulary correctly in English. Let's take a look at some of the most helpful accommodations for ELL students in content-area classrooms. Classroom Accommodations ELL students should be provided equitable access to the curriculum through the use of accommodations. All students seem to like knowing what time they have lunch or recess! Keep in mind that it takes a lot of effort to try to decode and comprehend unknown words in another language. Although you might think this is counterproductive, the truth is that literacy skills do transfer from one language to the next. Help students look for spelling and usage patterns, such as past tense verbs ending in "-ed. One teacher I know calls this English the "green language" because it represents money the students can earn in the future with good English communication skills. It is also important to understand that in addition to coming from a different language background, these students often come from a different cultural, social and political background. Generally speaking, accommodations that are helpful for ELL students are usually helpful for all students. You can do a picture walk with students by asking them to make predictions about the text based only on the pictures.
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