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ESL 101


The Botanical Gardens in New York are very peaceful in the morning. ... Beginning Level 1st year in US school and/or basic language skills ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: ESL 101

ESL 101
  • Eliza Sorte, Director
  • Northwest Montana Educational Cooperative
  • 2290 Farm to Market Road, Suite A
  • Kalispell, MT 59901
  • Phone 406-752-3302
  • Fax 406-257-3869
  • Email

Fist to Five
  • What is your current understanding of second
    language acquisition and teaching ELLs?
  • Show with a fist to five.
  • (fist being 0 understanding and 5 being expert
    understandingall other numbers somewhere on that

  • Can you explain what Lau v. Nichols is?
  • Can you empathize with a second language learner?
  • Can you explain the difference between BICS and
  • Can you distinguish between myths and reality of
    second language acquisition?
  • Can you make a conscious effort to use the 10
    strategies for improving students understanding?

  • By yourself, please take the following pre-test
    about second language acquisition.

  • Handout

  • ELL (English Language Learner)
  • ESL (English as a Second Language)
  • LEP (Limited English Proficient)
  • CALP (Cognitive Academic Language Proficiency)
  • BICS (Basic Interpersonal Communication Skills)

1. False
  • Learning a second language is hard work and even
    the youngest learners do not simply pick up the

2. False
  • It can take 6-9 years for an ELL to achieve the
    same level of proficiency in academic English as
    native speakers.

3. True
  • Immigrant students during the early part of the
    century did not learn English quick or well.
    Many dropped out to work in jobs that did not
    require the kinds of academic achievement and
    communication skills expected with todays

4. False
  • In controlled research, it has been found that
    adults and teenagers learned a second language
    more readily. Children may appear to learn a
    language more quickly because they have more
    opportunity for social interaction and the
    communication requirements are lower. Teenagers
    and adults have acquired learning strategies and
    have more hangers in their closets.

5. False
  • Research shows that it is much better for parents
    to speak in their native language at home. The
    language used will be richer and more complex and
    the basic concepts will be developed in their
    native language. Students will eventually
    translate that learning into English.

6. True
  • Children need comprehensible input. Imagine that
    you are a student in a Japanese classroom where
    everyone is speaking Japanese. You have no idea
    what they are talking about. You could sit there
    a long time and learn very little unless someone
    helps you with the context. Language is not
    soaked up.

7. False
  • Children can speak and socialize long before they
    can use the language for academic purposes. BICS
    (playground language) take 1-3 years to develop
    and CALP (classroom language) can take from 3-7
    years or longer.

8. True
  • Culture can affect how long it takes children to
    learn English. Do your students come from modern
    industrialized countries, or rural agricultural
    societies? Do your students come from language
    backgrounds using different writing systems?
    Previous schooling and school expectations will
    also affect language.

9. False
  • Math, despite its symbolic nature, is actually
    one of the most difficult subjects for ELLs
    because of the dominance of multiple meaning
    vocabulary words. i.e. sum and some. Also
    simple mathematical tasks are often buried within

10. False
  • Students will need to progress at their own rate
    through the stages of language acquisition. Some
    students will move quickly, while others will
    require more time. The silent period is
    actually a stage that needs to be recognized.

Lau v. Nichols (1974)
  • A San Francisco school district failed to provide
    English language instruction or adequate
    instructional procedures to approximately 1800
    students of Chinese ancestry.
  • The U.S. Supreme Court guaranteed children an
    opportunity to a meaningful education
    regardless of their language background.
  • Requires that school districts provide for
    linguistic and cultural diversity.
  • The Lau Remedies were later added.

Casteneda v. Pickard (1981)
  • Programs must be sound in theory
  • Provided with sufficient resources in practice,
  • monitored, for effectiveness with improvements
    made when necessary

Montanas Definitions
  • An individual
  • A) who is aged 3 through 21 and is enrolled or
    preparing to enroll in elementary or secondary
  • --AND--
  • B) i) who was not born in the United States or
    whose native language is a language other than
    English or
  • ii) I) who is American Indian or Alaska
    Native, or a native of the outlying areas and
  • II) who comes from an environment where a
    language other than English has had a significant
    impact on the individuals level of English
    language proficiency or
  • iii) who is migratory, whose native language
    is a language other than English, and who comes
    from an environment where a language other than
    English is dominant
  • --AND--
  • C) whose difficulties in speaking, reading,
    writing, or understanding the English language
    may be sufficient to deny the individual
  • the ability to meet the states proficient level
    of achievement on state assessments described in
    section 111(b)(3)
  • the ability to successfully achieve in classrooms
    where the language of instruction is English or
  • the opportunity to participate fully in society

Montanas LEP Population
There are about 6,700 LEP students in Montana
80 - LEP students are American Indian
Our Expectations
  • 80 of students will be proficient in Reading,
    Writing, and Math
  • All students will learn English
  • ELLs will learn content and concepts with the
    same expectations we hold for native English
    speakers (however, instruction, products, and
    assessments may look different)

  • Basic Interpersonal Communication Skills
  • (Basketball Court)
  • Cognitive Academic Language Proficiency
  • (Classroom)

  • Basic Interpersonal Communication Skills
  • (Basketball Court)
  • Cognitive Academic Language Proficiency
  • (Classroom)

5 to 7 years
Level of Proficiency
Level of Proficiency
Native English Speakers
2 years
ESL Learners
Conversational Proficiency
Academic Proficiency
Problems arise when teachers and administrators
think that a child is proficient in a language
when they demonstrate good social
English (Haynes 2006)
The Basic Standards for ELLs
  • Reading
  • Writing
  • Listening
  • Speaking

Video Clip
Farsi, with and without support.
The Affective Filter Hypothesis (Stephen Krashen,
  • Anxiety (low anxiety relates to second language
  • Oscar story
  • Motivation (higher motivation predicts more
    second language acquisition)
  • ---Alberto story
  • Self-Confidence (the acquirer with more
    self-esteem and self-confidence tends to do
    better in second language acquisition)
  • Josephina story

The Stages of Language Acquisition
  • Handout

Pre-Production Stage
  • A few hours to six months
  • Behaviors
  • --produces no speech a.k.a. silent period
  • --listens
  • --non-verbal responses
  • --dependent on context

Initial Production
  • Six months to a year
  • Behaviors
  • --student repeats
  • --continuance of listening
  • --1 to 2 word responses
  • --words in isolation
  • --mispronounces words

Beginning Conversation
  • One to three years
  • Behaviors
  • --can communicate some messages
  • --speaks in phrases
  • --grammatically incorrect sentences
  • --functions on a social levels

How a paragraph looks
  • The _____ in New York are very ______ in the
    _______. There are not many ______ about and the
    _____ are made by _____ and not ______. You
    _____ the _____ of ______ in the _____, the
    _____ of the ______, the ______ of ______ ______
    and the ______ of the _______.

Intermediate Fluency
  • Three years or more
  • Behaviors
  • --dialogue that makes sense
  • --It seems the student is fluent
  • --beginning to develop academic vocabulary
  • --produces several sentences, converses

How a paragraph looks now . . .
  • The ______ Gardens in New York are very ______
    in the morning. There are not many persons about
    and the sounds are made by _______ and not men.
    You hear the _____ of ______ in the lake, the
    cry of the ______, the ______ of the birds in the
    ______ and the _____ of the _______.

Advanced Fluency
  • Varies
  • Behaviors
  • --produces whole narration
  • --makes complex grammatical errors
  • --shows good comprehension
  • --uses expanded vocabulary and functions
    somewhat on an academic level

And now . . .
  • The Botanical Gardens in New York are very
    peaceful in the morning. There are not many
    persons about and the sounds are made by animals
    and not men. You hear the splash of fish in the
    lake, the cry of geese, the cawing of the birds
    in bushes, and the movements of monkeys.

Modification for ELLs
  • Modify Instruction
  • Modify Assignments
  • Modify Assessments

Special Education
  • If possible, find out if student was receiving
    services in their home country.
  • Keep records of interventions, observations, and,
  • If you consider their lack of achievement more
    than a language issue, you can go through the
    referral process without a test in their native
  • Keep in mind the time frame for language

State Assessment
  • All students take the Montana CRT regardless of
    their language proficiency level unless they are
    in their first academic year in a United States
  • What does that mean? How can you make it as
    successful for the ELLs as possible?

ELP Test
  • The state, to meet requirements of NCLB, is
    instituting a state ELP (English Language
    Proficiency) test this year.
  • This test is required for K-12 students
    identified as LEP (Limited English Proficient).
  • There are two categories
  • -----Beginning Level1st year in US school and/or
    basic language skills
  • -----Intermediate/Advanced Levelmore than basic
    language skills
  • November 28---December 19 (testing window)

Baby Steps As a School. . . . . . . . .
  • Can you learn to pronounce names properly?
  • Can you get your school handbook translated into
    the native languages you serve?
  • Can you sensitize mainstream students to cultural
    differences so they practice tolerance and
  • Can you create a home/school liaison committee
    for each language group?
  • Can you give advance notice to teachers about the
    arrival of a newcomer to help them prepare?
  • Can you label bathroom doors so they have
    international male/female symbols painted or
    posted on them?
  • Can you create a file of common needed phrases in
    the students native language?
  • Can you create a list of people who speak the
    native languages represented in your school that
    you could call in an emergency?

Baby Steps in your Classroom
  • Enunciate clearlydo not raise your voice. Add
    gestures, point to objects, or draw. (I said
  • Write clearly, legibly, and in print not cursive.
  • Develop and maintain routines.
  • Repeat information and check for understanding by
    having student SHOW versus answer Do you
  • Avoid idioms and slang. (Crack the window)
  • Present new information in the context of known
  • Announce lesson objectives and activities and
    provide step-by-step instructions.
  • Present information in a variety of ways.
  • Provide summations of the lesson and emphasize
    key vocabulary.
  • Recognize success overtly and frequently. But,
    be aware of cultural views on praise.

Some practical suggestions . . . My personal
  • Response Cards
  • Partner Clocks Spinner Grouping
  • Laser Pen
  • Word Walls (picture, word, definition)
  • Framed Writing
  • M-4-2-1
  • Reciprocal Teaching
  • Jigsaw Work

  • What was an ah ha or new learning for you from
    this presentation?
  • What will you do differently the next time you
    have an ELL in your classroom?
  • What support do you need on an individual level?

Additional Resources
  • OPI Lynn Hinch 406.444.3482
  • Making Content Comprehensible for English
    Language Learners (Echevarria, Vogt, Short
    2000) ISB 0-205-29017-5
  • Reading, Writing Learning in ESL (Peregoy
    Boyle 2001) ISB 0-8013-3249-4
  • Classroom Instruction That Works with English
    Language Learners (Hill Flynn 2006)
  • ISB 1-4166-0390-5