ELL Student

Discussion in 'Elementary Education' started by Samy, Aug 25, 2019.

  1. Samy

    Samy Rookie

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    Aug 25, 2019

    Hi everyone, it’s my first year teaching and I have an ELL student. I have no experience or background with ELL students at all and am unsure how to help her. She is from India and she already got held back last year. This is second grade and she’s at a level C (kindergarten Reading Level). I’m not sure if she even knows her alphabet or knows all her letters. But I notice when she writes she doesn’t make spaces at all between the letters. Right now I’m worried she isn’t going to pass with me either. What are some strategies I can use to help her?
     
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  3. vickilyn

    vickilyn Magnifico

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    Aug 26, 2019

    I am sharing a few of the links/resources that I have shared on the Free Links and Resources thread you can find here on the Forums. Easiest to find it by going to Recent Posts - it usually is on the first or second page. Of the links listed here, start with the first one on the list, and then look at the rest. These are the resources I recommend for anyone who needs help, but doesn't have an ESL certification or graduate degree. There are other links on the thread, but these are very usable and are more than enough to get you started. Since you talked about last year, she's not technically a "newcomer", but the strategies will still be valid. You don't mention her ability to speak English. You will be able to quickly differentiate between BICS and CALP, which you will find discussed below. What language is spoken in the home? Has her vision been checked? Just because she is ESL doesn't mean you don't rule out some of the things that you would check for other students as well. Hope this helps!
      • mastersinesl.com/leading-sources/
     
  4. Unetheladyteacher

    Unetheladyteacher Rookie

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    Aug 26, 2019

    I am an ESL teacher, and a lot of what you say reminds me of students who need to build their language skills. If you are unsure about her level of English, check to see if she was administered a test for ELL students. What was her score, and does it indicate a need for extensive assistance with language learning? Can she respond to basic questions that you ask in class, and does she respond using target vocabulary? Does she respond to questions with an answer that makes sense or with an answer that makes you think she didn't really understand what you were saying?

    Assess her, or have a related specialist if possible, assess her to see exactly what her knowledge of the alphabet, word writing, phonics, sentence construction, and comprehension is. You can even take a level C book and ask her a variety of questions about the book to see how she responds and what kind of English she uses. I would then use the data to start from the basics, if she really needs help with her alphabet letters. You can incorporate skills instruction and the teaching of alphabet letters into your reading groups. I use alphabet flash cards, alphabet letters sorts where students have to sort letters by feature and later by first sound. I also use alphabet Ietter books to help students who struggle with specific letters. This is a good website for ABC books: https://www.themeasuredmom.com/simple-alphabet-books-babies-toddlers-preschoolers/

    I do a lot of graphic organizers to teach vocabulary. If she can handle it, use words but if she needs assistance, I would use lots of pictures to help her understand new words. Here is a website I use for vocabulary resources: https://www.readingrockets.org/strategies/word_maps#targetText=A word map is a,given vocabulary word or concept.

    She might benefit from you finding flash cards for words that relate to a unit you are studying. She can practice the words with a friend and then be prompted to use them in related phrases or sentences later on.

    I would recommend read alouds, where you read a book to the class. That way, she hears words and has good reading strategies modeled for her. Keep lots of books that she herself has read, so she can practice reading fluently.

    In addition, label anything she will use in the classroom with both a picture of the item and the word for the item. I did that last year and it really cut down on the number of times I got asked where things are. I am also planning to give our school's ELL students a list of the English names for the tools they will be using in each subject. That way, they can point to a picture and ask for something.

    Colorin' Colorado is a website that really helped me at the beginning of my career. It even has helpful hints for parents to use to help their child with school: https://www.colorincolorado.org/

    Hope this helps.
     
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  5. Samy

    Samy Rookie

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    Aug 27, 2019

    Thanks to both of you for the advice! I will definitely check out those links.
     
  6. Rabbitt

    Rabbitt Connoisseur

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    Aug 30, 2019

    Find her likes and go with it. You need her happiness and trust.
    If she's intp drawing or coloring, create a picture dictionary or have her label the room.
    Friendship bracelets? Stamping? stickers? find something and get creative.
    If you find something and don't know what to do with it, bring it here.
     
  7. Tired Teacher

    Tired Teacher Cohort

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    Sep 2, 2019

    I taught ESL many yrs ago. You have excellent advice above. Just to add 1 of the most important things for this student: Help her make close friends to play with at recess. Have her work in groups or good partners a lot. If you have some good role models, you could ask them to befriend and help her learn. I know kids who would think it would be fun. Kids learn English fairly quickly ( age dependent) from their peers. Good luck! <3
     
  8. Tyler B.

    Tyler B. Groupie

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    Sep 5, 2019

    The advice above is excellent. When I get an ELL student like that, I assign her a buddy who helps the new child during non-academic times as well at other times. During Sustained Silent Reading, I have a roster of student volunteers read picture books with her on vocabulary development. Also, I use parent volunteers for tutoring.

    Two years ago, a new girl come in like your student, and I marshaled all my resources to help her develop. Then another student, who spoke Korean, told me her parents just sent her to the USA live with an aunt and to learn English. After 6 months, the girl would go back to Korea. At that point, I pulled all those resources back and put them with students who needed support.

    Just had coffee with two lovely young women who were the new girl and her buddy 10 years ago. These people are lifelong friends.
     
  9. vickilyn

    vickilyn Magnifico

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    Sep 6, 2019

    I'm not sure I understand this. Did you refrain from sharing because you were told that the girl would be returning to Korea? Did you consider that what a child may say, hoping it will be true, and the facts may be two entirely different things? I have read this post several times and I thought I should ask what the rationale was for providing resources versus not providing resources - can you help?
     
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