Most ESL teachers find themselves teaching vocabulary daily. Increasing student’s English vocabulary is one of the best ways to improve their overall English proficiency. I have searched high and low for free resources to help me teach vocabulary. Below are my favorites. There are affiliate links attached, so if you decide to make a purchase, I will receive a bit of compensation.
As an ESL teacher and coach, I have often been asked by classroom teachers what immediate changes they could make to assist the English Language Learners (ELLs) in their classrooms. Classroom teachers are some of the hardest working and most dedicated people I have ever met. I have been lucky enough to coach, co-teach, and work along side of some extraordinary educators. Some of the pieces that most teachers miss when they first start working with ELLs are listed below. These errors are easily corrected and I have seen them make a difference in how ELLs progress in the classroom. So correct the following errors before they happen.
Most children love to listen to stories read out-loud. ESL teachers can help children become more confidant in learning to read English and help them grow in self-esteem by including bilingual stories within their story times. You can also have bilingual books available for students to read during independent reading times. You don’t need to know the second language in the book for the students to enjoy hearing the stories. Most ESL classrooms have students with multiple language backgrounds so it is not probable that the language of each child will be spoken at the school.
Access to bilingual books for Somali newcomers is very difficult. Somalis make up a small percentage of the population in the United States. The majority of Somali students come to the United States from refugee camps. These students often have limited school experience. Many do not read and write in Somali, although they may speak Somali and Arabic fluently. Some parents are able to read to their children in Somali and/or Arabic. One of the most researched areas in literacy instruction is the connection between parents who read to their children and their children’s literacy. Reading aloud is the single most important activity for building the knowledge required for eventual success in reading. Only 30% of children from households where the primary language is not English were read to daily compared with 51% where the primary home language is English. It is critical to support English learners and their parents. Making bilingual books available creates an opportunity to for parents to help improve their children’s literacy skills.
Teaching Somali children is not a common experience throughout the United States. Classroom teachers and ESL teachers new to teaching Somali students may initially be anxious about the customs, attitudes, and behaviors of Somali students. The following information is provided to help teachers eliminate unease and to answer questions you have about Somali culture before you begin teaching Somali children. [Read more…] about Teaching Somali Children