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Category: English Language Learners

Digital ESL Assessments

Digital ESL Assessments

Like it or not more and more of student learning and assessments are done on the computer. In the short term, this is in large part due to virtual learning. More long term though this is still the trend. Many standardized assessments students take are given digitally. This includes the WIDA language assessment. It is important to give students the opportunity to practice navigating digital ESL assessments before they are expected to take a high stakes one. This will allow…

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Diverse Back to School Books for ELLs

Diverse Back to School Books for ELLs

The beginning of the school year is a great time to read books about starting at a new school, culture, respect, names, and identity. Books with a diverse range of characters allow students to see their own and other cultures represented. It is especially important for ELLs to read and listen to books where they see characters similar to themselves represented. Here are some great books to use a read aloud at the beginning of the school year. Many of…

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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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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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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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Writing About Photographs With ELLs

Writing About Photographs With ELLs

Photographs offer excellent support for English Language Learners to use in writing. They can be used to help students generate ideas.  Visual vocabulary support is built into a high quality photograph. You can easily differentiate a writing assignment based on photographs. Writing about pictures is a simple way to introduce content information to students. Lable Photographs with Newcomers Label objects in the photograph. Provide students with a list of objects found in the picture and have them label it. Write…

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Valentine’s Day Activities for ELLs

Valentine’s Day Activities for ELLs

Are you looking for some fun Valentine’s Day Activities to use with your students? This holiday is a fun way to teach about kindness and taking care of others. You can also teach language activities with a Valentine’s Day theme. Here are some ideas for integrating Valentine’s Day themes into lessons for English Language Learners. Teach about Tolerance Did you know that part of the history of Valentine’s Day has origins of fighting injustice? Learn more about the Valentine’s Day…

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