EDU 321

Welcome to Week 4

If you have ever worked with second language learners, you may have noticed that they seem to experiment more with language out on the playground than they do in the classroom. You may have been quick to think they are shy. In fact, this difference is a natural progression in language acquisition. Social language is obtained before academic language. Without direct instruction, academic language skills do not advance. This fourth week will give you the opportunity to delve deeper into these two components of language acquisition. This understanding will guide you as you plan a balanced literacy approach to lessons for your students that target the following skills:

  • comprehension skills

  • word attack skills

  • reading strategies

  • fluency

  • literary styles/content of text

  • word work skills

  • grammar or mechanics

  • phonics

I truly believe you will find the work we do this week to be of great value to you as it directly prepares you to teach effectively!

Feel free to contact me with any questions or needs you have.


J. Shaylene

This Week's 3 Learning Goals

Let's Read

Required Text
  1. A Course for Teaching English Learners (2nd edition):
    1. Chapter 6: English-Language Oracy Development
    2. Chapter 7: English-Language Literacy Development
  1. Sharrio, C. (n.d.). Differentiated instruction. Retrieved from
      • This presentation goes into detail about what differentiation is, what it means, and how it can successfully be implemented. It also provides concrete examples for educators.
  2. University of Northern Colorado. (n.d.). Introduction to BICS/CALP. Retrieved from
      • PowerPoint presentation on BICS and CALP.



Discussion #1 - BICS and CALPS

Read Chapter 6 of your textbook entitled, “English-Language Oracy Development.” Also, read the "Introduction to BICS/CALP" PowerPoint presentation. BICS stands for Basic Interpersonal Communication Skills. CALP stands for Cognitive Academic Language Proficiency.

Answer the following questions:
  1. What are the differences between BICS and CALP? Why is it important to know about BICS and CALP?

  2. In addition to BICS and CALP, what are two things you have learned about oracy development? How have these two things changed the ways in which you will teach ELLs?
Guided Response: Respond to at least two of your peers. Add to their thinking by sharing a personal or professional anecdote. Make a connection between what you know and what they know.

Let's Talk! The Importance of Developing Oral Language

The Importance of Oral Language Development in the ESL/ELL Classroom

How To Build Literacy With A Balanced Approach


Discussion #2 - Literacy Development of ELLS

After you read Chapter 7 of your textbook, “English-Language Literacy Development,” think about the student you created a profile for and have developed since Week One.

Choose an activity or strategy for each of these areas: reading, writing, and grammar. Describe how you would use each activity or strategy to promote your student’s literacy development. Why would these strategies be effective for your particular EL student?

Guided Response: Respond to at least two of your peers. Find a point of agreement and a point of disagreement. Explain what you think about your classmates’ selected strategy, and evaluate how well those strategies support ELLs.

Assignment: Lesson Plan Critique!

This is a big project, so please read the direction on our class site carefully!

First you will need to revise the objectives you created in Week Three based on feedback.

Next, find a lesson plan online that addresses your objectives. You will critique the lesson plan by specifically looking for 13 key elements.

See the rubric before you start so you can plan to address each part of this assignment!