ELL

English Language Learners’ Online Science Learning: A Case Study

English Learners may struggle when learning science if their cultural and linguistic needs are unmet. The Collaborative Online Projects for English Language Learners in Science project was created to assist English learners’ construction of science knowledge, facilitate academic English acquisition, and improve science learning. The project is a freely available, online project-based, bilingual instructional web-site designed for English learners of Hispanic origin. The project website contains two units: Let’s Help Our Environment and What Your Body Needs.

Author/Presenter: 
Fatima Terrazas-Arellanes
Carolyn Knox
Carmen Rivas
Emily Walden
Lead Organization(s): 
Year: 
2014
Short Description: 

Terrazas-Arellanes, F., Knox, C., Rivas, C., & Walden, E. (in press). English Language Learners’ Online Science Learning: A Case Study. In J. E. Aitken (Ed.), Cases on communication technology for second language acquisition and cultural learning. Hershey, PA: IGI Global.

Facilitating the Participation of Latino English language Learners: Learning from an Effective Teacher

Author/Presenter: 
Kathryn Chval
Lead Organization(s): 
Year: 
2012
Short Description: 

Throughout my career, I have collaborated with dedicated and hard-working teachers who have opened their classrooms so that others could learn from them. Yet, one teacher, Sara, stood out from all the others. From the first time I visited Sara's classroom in 1992, I knew she was extraordinary--a teacher who could inspire a Hollywood production. Sara taught Latino English language learners (ELLs) in a low-income urban neighborhood in ways that I had not observed or read about in the literature. She did not reduce the curriculum's level of complexity, especially its language, even though the students were ELLs. Instead, Sara engineered a mathematics learning environment where students actively engaged in collaborative problem solving, oral and written communication and justification, and independent thinking. To give other practitioners insight into how Sara facilitated the participation of ELLs during mathematics, I share my experiences of researching Sara's fifth-grade classroom and provide images of her teaching.

Re-Mediating Second Language Acquisition: A Sociocultural Perspective for Language Development

Author/Presenter: 
Aria Razfar
Lena Licón Khisty
Kathryn Chval
Year: 
2011
Short Description: 

This article provides a cultural-historical (CHAT) analysis of the practices used by an effective teacher of Latino/a children previously classified as “underachieving” and “beginning/novice” English Language Learners. Although the teacher would not describe her practices in strict CHAT, or sociocultural theory (SCT) terms, our analysis shows that teaching practices in this classroom are better understood using a SCT model rather than more prevalent second language acquisition (SLA) models that dominate the field of bilingual/English as a Second Language education. We describe the fundamental limitations of SLA assumptions about learners vis-à-vis a SCT perspective and use classroom and case study data to illustrate how a CHAT perspective illuminates this teacher’s practices. From a CHAT perspective, teaching and learning are socially reorganized around the mediation of dynamic learner identities and include shifts in expert–novice status, dialogic interactions, and the use of innovative mediational tools (e.g., keystrokes on a calculator) to promote academic writing and oral communication. The mediational reorganization described in the classroom opened up access to students who might have been dismissed by a SLA model as “incapable” of engaging in such tasks. We draw on classroom-level data (i.e., standardized scores in reading and math) as well as the work of selected focal students to illustrate our case.

Designing Math Lessons for English Language Learners

Author/Presenter: 
Kathryn B. Chval
Oscar Chavez
Lead Organization(s): 
Year: 
2012
Short Description: 

A middle school mathematics teacher taught native English speakers for the first fifteen years of her career. As immigrants from other countries moved into the community and student demographics began to change, she realized that she was not prepared to teach mathematics to students who were English language learners (ELLs).
The demands that she faced are not unique. The recent growth of the ELL population in the United States has challenged teachers to identify effective strategies to meet the needs of ELL students and their families.

The Use of Pictorial Supports as an Accommodation for Increasing Access to Test Items for Students with Limited Proficiency in the Language of Testing

This paper reports on an NSF-funded project that examines vignette illustrations (VIs) as a form of testing accommodation for English language learners (ELLs)—students who are developing English as a second language yet they are tested in English, in major assessment programs in the U.S. VIs are pictorial supports intended to make the content

Author/Presenter: 
Solano-Flores, Guillermo
Year: 
2010

The Use of Illustrations in Large-Scale Science Assessment: A Comparative Study

In this paper, we report on a study that compares state, national, and international assessment programs as to the characteristics and functions of the illustrations used in their science test items. We used our conceptual framework for examining the characteristics of illustrations in science items (Solano-Flores & Wang, 2009, 2011) to code the illustrations of samples of items.

Author/Presenter: 
Wang, Chao
Solano-Flores, Guillermo
Year: 
2011

Mathematics Teachers Teaching English Language Learners: What Knowledge Do They Need? (Driscoll, Heck, Chval)

Author/Presenter: 
Mark Driscoll
Daniel Heck
Kathryn Chval
Year: 
2009
Short Description: 

Mathematics teachers of English language learners (ELLs) are increasingly expected to help ELLs learn academic language. This session focuses on the question, What knowledge do teachers of mathematics need in order to support the learning of ELLs?

Including English Language Learners in the Process of Test Development: A Study on Instrument Linguistic Adaptation for Cognitive Validity

This paper reports preliminary results from an investigation, still in progress, on the use of verbal protocols among native Spanish-speaking, English language learners (ELLs) of various proficiency levels and background characteristics. We focus on language use among ELLs during various stages of a cognitive interview designed to probe whether and how students

Author/Presenter: 
Prosser, Rachel
Solano-Flores, Guillermo
Year: 
2010

Illustrations with Graphic Devices in Large-Scale Science Assessments: An Exploratory Cross-Cultural Study of Students’ Interpretations

In this exploratory, cross-cultural study, we examined students’ interpretations of graphic devise-based illustrations used in science tests. Graphic devices are visual components (e.g., arrows, dotted lines) intended to ensure proper understanding of the scientific processes or phenomena represented by the illustrations. We address cultural differences in terms of the interaction of two factors, students’ country of origin and items’ country of origin.

Author/Presenter: 
Wang, Chao
Solano-Flores, Guillermo
Year: 
2011

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