Helping LEP Students Adjust to the Classroom
LEP students are faced with the challenge of learning English as well as the school culture.
Teachers can help them adjust to their new language and environment in the following ways:
Announce the lessonís
objectives and activities
It is important to write the objectives on the board and review them orally before class begins. It is also helpful to place the lesson in the context of its broader theme and preview upcoming lessons.
Develop and maintain routines
Routines will help LEP students anticipate what will happen (e.g., types of assignments, ways of giving instructions) without relying solely on language cues.
List and review instructions step by step
Before students begin an activity, teachers should familiarize them with the entire list of instructions. Then, teachers should have students work on each step individually before moving on to the next step. This procedure is ideal for teaching students to solve math and science word problems.
Teachers need to remember that some students have low levels of literacy or are unaccustomed to the Roman alphabet.
Present frequent summations
of the salient points of the lesson
Teachers should (1) try to use visual reviews with lists and charts, (2) paraphrase the salient points where appropriate, and (3) have students provide oral summaries.
Present information in varied ways
By using multiple media in the classroom, teachers reduce reliance on language and place the information in a context that is more comprehensible to the students.
Use of a bilingual dictionary
Students, especially upper elementary, middle and HS, should each have a personal copy to carry with them to all classes. There is useful information explaining English grammar, customs, weights, measures and coinage.
Excerpted from Integrating Language and Content Instruction: Strategies and Techniques,
Deborah Short, 1991, National Clearinghouse for Bilingual Education
Welcome to Shenendehowa ESL!
New York State LEP Identification Process
The New York State ESL Learning Standards
The Four Stages of Second Language Acquisition
What Affects English Language Learning?/The Silent Period
Recommended Classroom Strategies for Teachers Working with ELLs
Challenges in Content Area Learning for ELLS: Reading
Challenges in Content Area Learning for ELLS: Mathematics
Challenges in Content Area Learning for ELLS: Science
Challenges in Content Area Learning for ELLS: Social Studies
Culture in the Classroom
Ten Ways Parents Can Promote Language Learning at Home
The Dos & Doníts of Working with an Interpreter
Common Questions and Answers concerning ESL
Helpful Websites and Shenendehowa ESL teacher contact info
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