EL Happenings

Volume 3 Issue 1

Teacher Feature

Students in Ms. Weiss' EL classroom are using the DRTA reading strategy while they read. The DRTA strategy has students make predictions about the text, text code, ask questions and make connections, and finally assess their understanding of the text. The DRTA strategy highlights the SIOP Component, Strategies as it encourages strategic thinking while students are reading a text. It can be used at all levels, with the only thing changing being the difficulty of the text for older students.

Teacher Takeaway- Questioning

Teacher Takeaway

SIOP Component Focus: Strategies

SIOP Feature Focus: A Variety of Questions or Tasks That Promote Higher-Order Thinking Skills

It is important to scaffold our questioning:

Literal level questions have a correct answer that can be found directly in the text.

(Why do the leaves turn red and yellow in the fall?)

Interpretive level questions allow our students to think about the question with added perspective and opinions that aren’t necessarily found in the text.

(Why do you think it needs water?)

Applied level questions allow our students to make a decision on next steps and apply the knowledge to real world examples.

(How much water are you going to give it? Why)

This month's Takeaway is a set of questions you could use in various ways:

Key Rings, Bookmarks, Padlet, Wheel Decide

Meet Maria Deese- Spanish Parent Liason

María Deese is the Parent Liaison for the Hispanic community in Perry Township. She has been working in the school system for 23 years. She can be viewed as the bridge between the staff, the community, and the families. Part of her duties includes translations and interpretations for families, but she believes the most important part of her job is to make sure that the families feel welcome and a part of Perry Township schools.

She was born on the beautiful island of Puerto Rico and moved to Indianapolis in 1989. Her 3 children attended Perry Township schools. She feels blessed to live in and work for Perry Township.

Meet Kjack William- Chin/Burmese Parent Liason

Kjack William is a Parent Liaison for the Chin/Burmese Community in Perry Township Schools. He was born in Chin State, Burma and moved to Indianapolis in 2000. He graduated from IUPUI in 2005 and lives in Perry Township with his wife and three children.

He has been working in the school system for 13 years to bridge the gap between parents, students, teachers, and the community.

Part of his duties includes translating communication between home and school, providing information to parents, contacting parents to discuss student needs, issues and progress, arranging and interpreting conferences and meetings, making a home visit to parent, serving as contact person for the parent to call with questions about the school program and services.

Compliance Corner

Beginning of the Year EL Compliance Checklist (Go to our website for more information)

The Home Language Survey (HLS) is only administered to students who are new to Indiana schools. This should not be included in the general registration packet.

The date for ILP and Parent Notification Letters for the beginning of the year was August 24, 2018. Thank you for your help in sending ILPs out on time. For students enrolling after this date, we must provide the parental notifications within two weeks of a child being placed in a program. This includes identifying, testing, creating the ILP and sending home the parent notification.

All Individual Learning Plans (ILPs) should be updated and shared with all teachers of English Learners.

A trained, certified staff member must administer the Kindergarten W-APT or WIDA Screener to students who are new to Indiana from non-WIDA states and who have a language other than English listed on the HLS.

Check out IDOE’s guidance video series here.

WIDA Updates (Go to our website for more information)

WIDA has launched a new public website (www.wida.wisc.edu) on 8/15. It is more user-friendly and features improved navigation and streamlined content.

The updated IDOE WIDA Assessment Guidance document is now available, and contains useful information such as interpreting KG W-APT results.

We are offering a WIDA workshop during fall intersession to complete your WIDA certifications Thursday, October 11th from 8:30am-11:30am or 12:30pm-3:30pm. Please sign up in PD Express.

IDOE is offering a WIDA Screener (Online) overview webinar covering training, administration, and scoring which will be held on September 12 from 4:00-5:00 p.m. ET. Join here.

Please let Kim Jovic (ext. 3785) or our office know if someone in your building needs a WIDA or DRC account.

English Learner Website

We love showing off your building and classroom celebrations! Check out the Perry English Learner site for all things EL! Do you have a story or celebration you would like to share? Please let me know so we can add it to our website!

Georgina Schneider and JJ Tidd- District EL Coaches


Twitter: @gschneidercoach


Twitter: @JJTidd