Looking to the Future

by Lorraine Bailey

Demographics

Pinnacle Charter School was founded in 1997 as a school of choice. The community is mostly Hispanic. The school is now a Title 1 public charter school within the Charter School Institute. While English is the official language of the school, the Hispanic population exceeds all other races and Spanish is the second highest language spoken among students.

Goals

Goal 1: Resources such as the PLUSS Model (Sanford, Brown, & Turner, 2012) and WIDA Consortium's RtI2 Approach (2012) provide materials and examples for planning optimum language development lessons. With meaningful, engaging, and motivating lessons, students will be able to draw on their cultural backgrounds and scaffold their learning as they apply newly discovered concepts to their ever expanding range of knowledge.


Goal 2: Home Visits will increase parent-teacher relationships and their buy-in to helping their children at home (Eptstein, 1995). As the teacher learns more about the family's customs, traditions, and routines, the parents can learn how to find spaces in their lives to read every day with their child and to spend family time playing learning games and doing homework together.


Goal 3: Return sociodramatic play to the kindergarten classroom. Sociodramatic play is an important source of explicit language. Children use language forms from home and school, practice peer language, and learn from each other. They can build their background knowledge as they role play. The experience gives them practice to be able to communicate with others outside the school context. Not only will ELLs benefit from the experience, but every student as well. (Ruiz, 1995).