(Open to all grantees)
This session includes a presentation on English Language Learners and the Common Core State Standards for Mathematics and the Next Generation Science Standards, followed by discipline-based discussions.
The Common Core State Standards (CCSS) for Mathematics and the forthcoming Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) have taken shape during a period of rapidly changing student demographics and continuing science achievement gaps which emphasize issues related to English language learners. In addition to the focus on disciplinary core ideas, the new standards emphasize “practices”— mathematical practices and scientific and engineering practices—which are language intensive. Thus, the standards cannot be achieved unless students and teachers recognize and meet these increased language demands as well as language learning opportunities across these subject areas. This will be especially so for the millions of English language learners (ELLs) in the nation’s schools.
The session addresses the following topics. First, the two presenters (Lee and Cheuk) summarize major shifts of CCSS and NGSS. Second, the two presenters introduce Understanding Language, a national initiative that is bringing together leading educators with expertise in disciplinary knowledge and language learning to create knowledge and resources for teachers of ELLs (Go to ell.stanford.edu). Third, participants discuss language demands and learning opportunities as English language learners engage in these practices. The participants also discuss commonalities and differences in practices between mathematics and science. Finally, implications of CCSS and NGSS for English language learners are discussed with regard to a research agenda for the participants individually and NSF and the field collectively.