ELLs' Corner

Summer Edition

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Summer Learning Summit Sessions

Effective Instruction TaskForce: NEXT STEPS

Must be a current TaskForce member to register for this course.

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All reading and writing activities should be purpose-driven; a purpose that needs to be derived from the content objectives and state standards. Being able to answer the question: "Why am I having my students read this?" shows a clear purpose in mind.

In addition to having a purpose, we also need to have a plan for how we want our students to read or write. Strategies like, Somebody Wanted But So, Summarization Frames, RAFT (Role, Audience, Format, Topic), and Expert Writing can facilitate the planning process.

Some Examples of Structured Reading Activities:

IDEA BOOKMARKS: In this activity, students take reflective notes on bookmark-size pieces of paper. The bookmarks include quotes, observations, and words from the reading that strike the reader as interesting or effective (Samway, 2006).

INSERT METHOD: In this activity, students read text with a partner and mark the texts with the following coding system:

  • a "check" mark to show that a concept of fact is already known
  • a "question" mark to show that a concept is confusing
  • an "exclamation" mark to show something is surprising
  • a "plus" sign to show an idea or concept is new to the reader (Echevarría, Vogt, & Short, 2008)

Some Examples of Structured Writing Activities:

LETTERS/EDITORIALS: During this activity, students write letters and editorials from their own point-of-view or from the point-of-view of a character in a novel, person from history, or a physical object (sun, atom, frog, etc.)

READ, WRITE, PAIR, SHARE: This strategy encourages students to share their writing and ideas during interactions. Students read a text, write their thoughts using a sentence stem, pair up with another student, and share their writing.

DRAW AND WRITE: During this activity, students express knowledge of academic content by drawing and writing.


Content Areas:

Math, Science, Social Studies & Language Arts

Preparation Time:

20 min

Class time:

45 min or more


Students prepare a "News Show" highlighting a specific topic. The news show would include "site location," studio guest interviews, and advertisements appropriate to the topic.

In Math, a unit on fractions includes interviews with: mathematicians to find out how to solve problems; people in various occupations to discover the way they use fractions in their careers, mixed numbers and improper fractions to see how they function in equations. In addition, students create advertisements using fractions or conduct on-location reports that highlight the setting of a particular word problem.

In Social Studies, students prepare a "News Show" regarding the nation's reaction to the Supreme Court's 1857 Dred Scott Decision. Interviews include responses from Dred Scott, members of the southern aristocracy, abolitionists such as William Lloyd Garrison and Frederick Douglass, plus President James Buchanan, as well as members of the Supreme Court.

Sentence Stems:

  • Good Evening Ladies and Gentlemen, welcome to...
  • We are broadcasting tonight from...
  • And now, a word from our sponsors...
  • We now go on location to...
  • Thanks __________, turning to other news...

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It's All About Engagement!

The more ELLs write, read, talk, and listen the more language they will acquire and Kagan strategies provide the perfect venue for language acquisition. Remember, it's all about engagement!

Telling Isn't Teaching: The Fine Art of Coaching

By Richard Curwin

April 4, 2012

I have the greatest respect for coaches; not every coach of course, but those who care more about their players than about winning. I include those who coach drama, choir, band, and all those who spend so much of their time and energy on helping children far beyond the confines of the classroom. Good coaches make great teachers.

Coaches understand that telling a player (or singer, actor, etc.) what to do is not enough. No drama director or soccer coach asks students to sit in the room and explain what to do. They go to the playing environment, demonstrate correct technique and then put the students through multiple repetitions; practice, practice, practice. Repetition ensures that correct technique will become close to automatic when the game is on the line, emotions run high and calm under pressure is required. Coaches are fully aware that knowing what to do is not the same as knowing how to do it.

The same model needs to be used when changing student behavior if we want to successfully improve the choices students make. Incentives, threats, discussions, contracts, consequences, punishments, removal from class and every other technique we use to change behavior are 100% useless if the student does not know how to do something else.

To read the full article, click on Telling Isn't Teaching: The Fine Art of Coaching linked here.

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Inside-Outside Circle

In concentric circles, students rotate to face new partners and then answer or discuss teacher questions.
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Check out Region 10's Calendar of Events and look for ESL TExES Preparation Courses.

Given that LEISD has joined the Title III Bil/ESL Cooperative with Region 10, our teachers can attend any trainings related to ESL or bilingual education for free. To look for ESL (154) test preparation trainings, specifically, type ESL TExES in the search bar of the Calendar of Events page.

ESL TExES Test or Training Opportunities Mileage Reimbursement

If you take your ESL TExES (154) test or attend an ESL TExES (154) test preparation session at Region 10 or Region 11, you can get mileage reimbursement for the day you travel to and from the test/training center. To process your reimbursement, fill out a Travel Receipt form with proof of attendance to the event such as the registration form and a printed Goggle Map confirming mileage from your campus address to the location of the event and back.

Please submit the filled out form and related paperwork to your campus secretary.

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The Importance of Bilingual Education

Posted on January 12, 2018 by Blanca Caldas Chumbres in Achieving Educational Equity

There are a wide variety of benefits of bilingual education. We’ve found that bilingual people have more advanced cognitive skills than those who speak only one language; additionally, they develop multicultural skills to be able to thrive in an increasingly diverse society. It’s even been shown to prevent dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. For Latino and Mexican American children living in the United States whose first language is Spanish, it also connects them with their heritage and family. Often, when a student is prevented from developing his or her first language, they cut ties with their family in their country of origin. Bilingualism helps bridge this generational divide.

To read the full article, click on the link here.

Dual Language Canvas Page

Remember you have access to resources, video library, and other important tools to assist you in creating a dual immersion learning environment.

Dual Language Required Components

As you plan for instruction, please keep the dual language Gomez & Gomez required components in mind.

Dual Language Protocols

Dual Language Support Needed

Please follow the link to write the kind of support you need from us.