Teaching Syllables to ELLs

Teaching Syllables to ELLs

Syllables are one component of phonological awareness. A syllable is part of a word that has a vowel, or vowel sound. Here are some ideas for teaching syllables to English Language Learners. Introducing Syllables One way to teach students how to identify syllables is to have them close their mouth and say a word. They then count how many breaths of air they take to say the word. That is the number of syllables. You can read more about this and…

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Diverse Student Name Books

Diverse Student Name Books

You can use student name books to help explain to students the importance of correctly saying the names of their classmates. Here is a list of student name books from a diverse selection of authors. They are great at back to school time or anytime during the year when a new student enters the class.  For ELLs, it can be especially frustrating when a teacher or classmates do not pronounce their name correctly. Taking some time at the beginning of…

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Summer Learning Tips for ELLs

Summer Learning Tips for ELLs

This summer is sure to be a different experience for everyone. Here are some summer learning ideas to help kids have fun and keep learning whether they are able to get outside or need to remain inside their homes. Many of them can also be completed virtually using materials that are found around the house. STEM Activities The summer is a great time to incorporate more hands-on learning. STEM activities are engaging and great for language development. Stick Fort Building–…

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Diverse Leveled Readers for ELLs

Diverse Leveled Readers for ELLs

It is important for children to be exposed to diverse books as they are learning how to read. Many teachers are examining their classroom library and adding more diverse books to their collection. Guided reading is also an important component of a balanced literacy program. Some teachers are lucky to teach in a school with a well-stocked book room. In other cases, many of the books at the lower levels are not age-appropriate for older ESOL students and do not…

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Solving Math Word Problems with ELLs

Solving Math Word Problems with ELLs

You may have heard that math is a universal language. This is not the case when students are solving word problems. Many students struggle to solve word problems, they can be particularly challenging for ELLs. Here are some strategies for solving math word problems with English Language Learners. Academic Language Teach students the important vocabulary for the type of word problems that they are solving. This will help students to begin to figure out that how many more might mean to…

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Using Would You Rather Questions with ELLs

Using Would You Rather Questions with ELLs

Help students tell about their opinion and develop critical thinking skills. Would you rather questions are fun ways for students to practice speaking and writing. Here are some ideas for using them with your English Language Learners. Speaking Warm-Up When meeting with a small group of students use would you rather questions as a way to get students talking in a structured way. Choose a question then have each student answer the question.  Students can then tell why they choose…

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Brain Breaks for ELLs

Brain Breaks for ELLs

A brain break allows students to take a short break from learning and refocus their attention. This can be particularly important to ELLs as they are not only absorbing new content but are processing a new language as well. Movement Especially for younger children incorporating movement into a brain break will help to keep their attention for further learning. Act like an animal- Name an animal and have students move like that animal. Stretching- One person can be the leader…

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Digital Newcomer Vocabulary

Digital Newcomer Vocabulary

Learning basic vocabulary will help newcomer students improve in all areas of English development. Students with basic reading skills can benefit from reading simple sentences and matching pictures with words. Google slides is one format students can use the practice new vocabulary. Learn more about teaching newcomer ELLs.  Accessibility Tools For students that are not able to read in English, having a screen reader can help them improve their English. Read Aloud: A Text to Speech Voice Reader– This extension…

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Ideas for Celebrating Earth Day with ELLs

Ideas for Celebrating Earth Day with ELLs

Help students learn to appreciate the environment around them and learn new vocabulary. Here are some ideas for celebrating Earth Day with ELLs. These are also great activities to get students outdoors and/or learning about the world around them. Go Outside Look for ways to take lessons outside. Going outside is great for student engagement. A recent study described in Psychology Today describes the benefits of outdoor learning. Here are some activities to try outside. Go on a scavenger hunt…

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Phonemic Awareness with ELLs

Phonemic Awareness with ELLs

Phonemic awareness refers to the ability to identify and manipulate phonemes in spoken words. It is also the understanding that the sounds of spoken language work together to make words (Reading Rockets.) All students in preschool and many in the primary grades are learning phonemic awareness skills. Teaching phonemic awareness skills to young ELLs is similar to their native English peers. Older ELLs benefit from short and targeted instruction and practice with the sounds of English.  Exposure to the Sounds…

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