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Category: speaking

Spring Teaching Ideas for MLs

Spring Teaching Ideas for MLs

When spring is in the air, take advantage of the nice weather and integrate seasonal topics into your lessons. Learning about springtime is a fun way to help Multilingual Learners (MLs) learn about the environment around them.  Here are some fun spring teaching ideas for MLs. Teach about Animals Animal life cycles are great for teaching transition words. One fun activity is to show students a video of an eagle or other animals with eggs or newborn babies. In the…

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Comparing and Contrasting with MLs

Comparing and Contrasting with MLs

Learning how to compare and contrast are higher-order thinking skills and an important component of reading comprehension. They are also a great way for students to practice language skills and build academic language. When students compare they look for things that are the same. When they contrast they look for items that are different. Here are some activities to introduce comparing and contrasting to students. Comparing and Contrasting with Pictures Show students two sets of pictures. Have them compare and…

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Integrating Speaking and Writing for ELLs

Integrating Speaking and Writing for ELLs

Speaking and writing are two components of language development. With elementary-aged students, the typical progression is that students progress more quickly in speaking than in writing.  This is most likely due to the fact that all students at that age are learning writing, while speaking is a natural way that children socialize. For older students, some may be more comfortable writing down ideas before speaking. Integrating speaking and writing provides English Language Learners with additional and opportunities for vocabulary development….

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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. You can also use some of these resources to create text sets for students. Using multiple texts will help to build students’ background knowledge and increase their vocabulary as they read or listen to new texts. 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. Learn About Climate Change Earth…

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Setting Language Goals with ELLs

Setting Language Goals with ELLs

Goal setting is helpful for students to reflect on their learning. Students can set goals at any point in the year. Setting language goals for ELLs is particularly beneficial at the beginning of the school year, at the beginning of the calendar year, and before beginning WIDA or other language testing. For English Language Learners, setting a language goal helps them to become aware of how they are progressing learning the English Language. This can look different depending on the…

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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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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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Using Scavenger Hunts With ELLs

Using Scavenger Hunts With ELLs

A scavenger hunt is a fun way to teach vocabulary terms to ELLs. They also get students up and moving and can give them some control over what terms they choose to find. Many are simple enough that students can complete them at home. If students work with a partner or in small groups, a scavenger hunt is a natural way for them to practice speaking skills as well. Students can discuss whether objects fit with the topic they are…

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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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Sentence Starters and Frames for ELLs

Sentence Starters and Frames for ELLs

Using sentence starters and sentence frames are one strategy to support students in speaking, reading, and writing. A sentence starter is when you give students the beginning part of a sentence and they fill in the rest. A sentence frame is when there are blanks inside a sentence that students fill in. Here are some ways to use sentence stems and frames as a scaffold to support your ELLs. Support Newcomers & Emergent Readers Simple sentence starters allow students to…

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