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English Learners

As communities across the United States are becoming more diverse, many new teachers are finding find that their responsibilities include teaching both academic content and language skills to English Learners.  

There are many different types of bilingual ed/EL program, and great differences can exist between programs that purport to serve students in similar ways.  

Regardless of the type of program you're in remember that it's your responsibility to deliver instruction to these students in a way that is understandable. Organizing your teaching practice in a way that meet’s their needs, as well as "working the system" to ensure that these students are getting the services, such as extra support for taking tests, that they need.  

As a starting point, find out what kinds of services your school offers to support English Learners — and to support you as their classroom teacher. Ask your administrators, colleagues, or district bilingual/EL office. Then do a little of your own research about English Learners and how their needs can best be served.

Resources for Working with English Language Learners

Dr. Jim Cummins' EL and Second Language Learning Web http://www.iteachilearn.com/cummins/index.htm

This site offers details about Cummins' work researching second lanquage acquisition and literacy development, and links to other web resources.  

Stephen D. Krashen's Website http://www.sdkrashen.com Information about Krashen's many informative articles and other writings about language learning.  

Rethinking Schools Special Collection on Bilingual Education http://www.rethinkingschools.org/special_reports/bilingual/resources.shtml

a more in-depth listing of articles and resources for teachers working with English Learners.