Tuesday, July 26, 2011

ESL and Academic Language

Question: What type of text is a special problem for ESL students?

Answer/Quote: “Unfortunately, the academic language and expository texts characteristic of content areas often act as barriers to the success of ESL students. In order to ensure that ESL students have equal access and keep pace with their native-English-speaking classmates in the mastery of content concepts, teachers must be able to implement instructional strategies that facilitate their ESL students’ understanding of academic language and their comprehension of expository text.” P. 133.

Comment: As I have said before, I’m learning ESL instruction right along with my readers. I’ve noted that two of the essential techniques—language experience and the directed reading assignment—are also appropriate for native speakers of English. We should see in the next couple of chapters whether the same will be true for helping ESL students to become familiar with academic language. RayS.

Title: “Selecting Materials for the Reading Instruction of ESL Children,” VG Allen in Kids Come in All Languages: Reading Instruction for ESL Students. Eds. K Spangensberg-Urgschat and R Pritchard. Newark, DE: IRA. 1994, 108-131.

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