Sunday, August 29, 2010

New Year and Mixed Ability Classes:(

Well, with the dismal economy, the number of English language learners has plummeted in my school district as well as in many others throughout the country. So now, I find myself in a class of wonderful students who are at 3 different English proficiency levels: beginning, intermediate, and advanced. Hmmm...what to do?

I attended a workshop where K-3 learning centers were discussed. The problem I saw with that is that mostly high school teachers were there and having a K-3 "agenda" on learning centers was a waste of my time. Though, as a teacher trainer, I have a great deal of admiration for what elementary school teachers do with their students, I didn't feel that it was an effective "buy-in" for me to have a K-1 teacher lecturing me on how easy it is to develop centers and that even kindergarten kids can do it. Yep, now let me get this straight. This teacher has the SAME 20 kids all day. The typical high school teacher has 5 classes covering 3 different subject areas. Let's see -- which is easier to work with: a class of 20 or 5 classes totaling 150.

Since I love a challenge, I am now spending time on the net searching for information on what teachers at grades 6-12 can do with students of mixed English proficiencies in the same class. It is also my hope that anyone reading this post might want to offer a suggestion or two:)



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