Thursday, June 14, 2012

Supporting ELLs in Secondary in Using Informational Text

Though there are many ideas here, CUES QUESTIONS AND ADVANCED ORGANIZERS, this section is great prep for ELLs to survive in mainstream class with COMMON CORE.

For ELLs to survive in mainstream classes, they will need how to to use graphic organizers to glean key data from informational text.  They will need to know that not every word is of equal importance. Reading a textbook is not like reading a novel.  Different skills enter the picture here.  The ability to hone in on the main idea, key concepts, important academic vocabulary, etc. is the focus now.   The need to be able to use graphic organizers (see FREEOLOGY for a FREE list of MANY graphic organizers for all content areas) is a must for academic survival (i.e. earning a grade of B or higher).  ELLs will need to be taught how to use them and then be allowed to review, revise, and rewrite them as needed.  With each revision comes a clearer grasp of the academic content.

CUES--here is a vehicle that can be used to boost vocabulary.  The teacher or fellow cooperative group members provide cues to help the ELL make connections between the clue and the word.  The objective on the teacher's part in offering clues is building on the ELL's vocabulary base.  This is quite effective in boosting academic language in reading, writing, and speaking skills.  Secondly, when  asking questions, teachers need to avoid the YES/NO ones (lower end of Bloom's Taxonomy) and instead provide students with questions that necessitate thinking (ex.  judgment).  With challenging questions, ELLs start to experience success with textual analysis.

SETTING OBJECTIVES AND PROVIDING FEEDBACK  Students also must have clear objectives (What exactly will I be learning today?) and regular feedback (without it, students will not be ready to do the homework assignments).  Put the learning objective on the board.  Make students read it with you. Have them track you as you read.  Call on non-volunteers to read with you.  Go to activating prior knowledge activities to confirm that everyone is on the same page (if not, build background knowledge before proceeding to the lesson).  Then as you go through the lesson, monitor students as they interact with others to complete various academic tasks and provide explicit feedback as to how well they are doing something (or not).  "Nice job!" tells a student nothing.  "Nice job...Would you explain to me how you came to that conclusion?" shows you how well a student understood (or not).

There are many more videos and resources there.  I just pulled the high school ones:)



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