In the current essay I would like to provide teachers with information about ELL students. English language learners (ELLs) are students whose first language is other than English and who therefore are learning English at the same time they are learning the content specified in the curriculum standards.
According to English Language Learners, the English language learner (ELL) student population continues to grow more rapidly than the student population as a whole. According to the National Center for Educational Statistics the general population has grown 9% from 1993 to 2003, while the ELL population has grown 65% in that same time. The ELL student population now comprises 10% of all students.
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As usual, it takes more than a year for the ELL students to become fluent in English. The process is very long and requires many efforts of students. A lot of practice and the desire to learn are also extremely important. It also depends on the capabilities of a student, as it depends on his experience, talent and desire to learn a language. Studying a foreign language is very challenging and there are many issues that have to be solved during the process.
The stages of second language acquisition can be described as preproduction, early production, speech emergence, intermediate fluency and advanced fluency, according to The Stages of Second Language Acquisition (2010). The first stage of learning English is to develop reading skills and getting acquainted with the language. The second stage is to work from strengths, knowledge and obtained skills. The third stage intends connection with students’ families and culture. The fourth stage is to use engaging instruction, practice and communication. And the fifth stage is to vary assessment strategies. Also there is the need to communicate actively and to practice.
There can be different barriers ELL students face regarding language development and academic success. These barriers include cultural barriers and other challenges connected with the process of learning foreign language. There are difficulties in communication and other aspect when staying in other country. Academic success also depends on confidence and other issues that have to be present in a student. There are also many nuances that form the outcome of the studying process. Students face many challenges which require a lot of patience regarding language development and academic success.
It is very difficult to speak foreign language. Sometimes it is even challenging to explain something in the native language. Cultural shock is always present in ELL students, as it requires a lot of patience and desire to study. It is difficult to accept and understand another culture, as many its aspects are new and unknown. Everything seems so hard that sometimes there is a lack of patience to continue. It can be said that the cultural shock is inevitable and has to be accepted, as efforts in overcoming it can help a lot.
According to English Language Learners (2005) , “ELL students face the challenging task of mastering a new language while also learning subject-area content. Although there have been signs of progress, including higher reading and math scores for ELL student as reported on the NAEP 2004 Trends in Academic Progress, more improvement is needed. English language learners receive lower grades, are judged by their teachers to have lower academic abilities, and score below their classmates on standardized tests of reading and math.” Struggle in language learning and communication disorders are common among English Language Learners. Students face many problems and sometimes need professional advice. That is why there have to be implemented appropriate approaches to provide much simpler studying process for students.
There is a considerable ELL specialist’s role in helping ELL students and their teachers to succeed. A good specialist can help to provide better conditions in the educational process. It is also important to ensure that teachers have proper skills in teaching ELL students. Specialists have to contribute to the studying process of students. Also, communications and consultations are essential, as there are many aspects that are important for students. And as well, it is important to provide teachers with instructions considering the educational process and helps students to adapt in the new environment.
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Teachers can use different strategies in adapting their instruction to meet the needs of ELL students. Strategies that have to be used include cooperation, new approaches, creativity, new ideas, active communication, innovative approaches, the use of online technologies, the use of a clear plan, the use of extraordinary methods in learning, and also taking into consideration the ideas/opinions/thoughts considering studying of students. Meeting the needs of ELL students is one of the main goals of the teacher. The use of different approaches, of creativity and taking risk in educating ELL students can be very effective. The outcome for the studying can be unexpected because of the proper communication and practice. The implemented strategies have to work and give positive results. It will help in “converting” recent newcomers to the country and to the international school community to the confident speakers of English language. Integrating students into environment and culture is extremely important. This has to be done as fast as possible. As well, the strategies have to reflect the current situation and trends. The teachers’ adaptation of their instructions to meet the needs of ELL students goes on a long way. Ensuring the importance of strategies and their careful implementation will give positive results. Then, the close cooperation has to be ensured and the opinion of the students themselves should also count. Extraordinary methods in learning and newest technologies are related to the modern trends nowadays. The understanding of the socio- cultural framework is also important in the educational process. ELL students should have the opportunities to choose the approach of learning. Teachers can offer them different options and they can choose the most appropriate for them. All in all, it is important to implement the strategies that will be effective and that can help and benefit the students.
As a fact, ELL teachers should work with staff and other teachers to develop instructional schedules to provide ELL students access to challenging coursework in language and general education/content classrooms. It is important to ensure communication and friendly relationships between teachers and students. Additional courses and other issues can be solved more easily if there is a corresponding help. All materials have to be available and teachers have to provide the necessary help to students. Teachers have to cooperate within the structure and develop strong relationships based on trust. The corresponding measures have to be taken in order to provide the best option for studying and help students to adapt in the environment.
The instructional schedules can be developed differently. It is important to ensure that they are developed in cooperation. Misunderstanding does not have to be present in the relationships between teachers and students. Instructional schedules depend on the situation. As well, the nationality of students has to be taken into consideration. Teachers choose the schedules and then they have to evaluate the situation and implement them. ELL students must to have access to challenging coursework in language and general education/content classrooms. For that, they will follow the developed schedule. It is important to understand the compatibility of the schedules for the students. It can be said that there have to be provided comfortable relations in schedule for the students. Providing the comforting conditions, the environment will seem more preferable for the effective studying for students. That is why teachers are interested in providing the best instructional schedules to ELL students. The provided benefits will be reflected in the final outcome.
“It is critical that tutors see second language learners as children with prior knowledge and experience about language learning. Also, there are many ways that can help to develop in a student “understanding and confidence necessary to becoming a successful reader and writer of English”, according to English Language Learners (2009). Prior knowledge and experiences are also important and can help to provide a student with further knowledge. Prior knowledge will determine the terms which approach with be the best for the studying. There is a range of programs that can be used for teaching ELL students, and the teacher can easily plan with the colleagues the further actions in collaboration. This will be more effective. As well, the one-on-one attention can be very helpful for a student. “A teacher can use this valuable time to help a student feel comfortable and confident while trying out new words and phrases as a new English speaker”, according to English Language Learners (2009). The models of the learning cycle allows students to build science vocabulary, improve writing skills, support peer relationships, and participate in cooperative learning groups, according to Strategies for ELL students (2007). General education/content teachers can help a teacher to prepare for the ELL teaching. It is important to cooperate and use the resources that can be helpful for both- teachers and students. ELL students are considered as students with perspectives, as the desire to study foreign language means a lot.
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