Teaching English Language Learners: A Self-Study

By Mantero, Miguel | Academic Exchange Quarterly, Summer 2005 | Go to article overview

Teaching English Language Learners: A Self-Study


Mantero, Miguel, Academic Exchange Quarterly


Abstract

This study investigates the implementation, challenges, and successes of a district-wide, intensive, three-week English as a Second Language (ESL) summer program in an elementary school in the southeastern United States were where the English Language Learner (ELL) population has grown significantly over the past ten years.

Introduction

The 2000 Census (US Census Bureau) found that 53.6 percent of Alabama's foreign-born population had arrived in the state after 1990. The 2000 Census also recorded 87,772 foreign-born residents in the Alabama: this was an increase of 44,239 residents since the 1990 Census which stated that the foreign-born population was 43,533 residents. If we add the 2003 estimate of illegal immigrants in the state by the Immigration and Naturalization Services (24,000 individuals) then the total foreign-born population rises well above 110,000 residents. This dramatic change in Alabama's demographic profile is very visible in the schools around the state. In an effort to help further educate the ELLs, a university established an intensive ESL summer school program that took place over three weeks. We performed a self-study as we observed, interacted and spoke with all of the participants in the summer program (ESL students, their teacher-interns, administrators of the elementary school, and the ESL program director). The guiding questions of the self-study are:

1. What strategies and instructional settings are most effective in teaching ELLs not only English, but also provide opportunities to learn how to mediate and organize their lives outside of school?

2. How can we use the ESL summer program to build, strengthen, and inform the Professional Development School (PDS) relationship with Broadlumber Elementary School?

Professional Development Schools

An important facet of a future language teacher's education is participation in inquiry-based teaching (IBT). The benefits of IBT practices emerge during real-life teaching episodes in the schools within our communities (Frey, 2002). Vital to the concept of IBT is involvement in an academic setting outside of university classrooms that afford future teachers opportunities to reflect on their personal development, professional growth, as well as their academic preparation. IBT places the emphasis on activity within appropriate educational settings and applies Wells' (1999) practice of education to teacher preparation, and in this case, language teacher education. Glass and Wong (2003) bring to light the concept of engaged pedagogy which compliments IBT and supports successful PDS relationships by preparing teachers and teacher-educators to extend their understanding of activity beyond the traditional roles. As Glass and Wong (2003) state, engaged pedagogy:

--Permits educators to understand the local contexts of each students' student's life while providing a global framework for success in their community.

--Strengthens the teacher-pupil relationship as each is transformed through IBT.

--Provides opportunities for critical reflection and the formation of knowledge within all of those involved.

--Offers teacher-educators a framework to involve themselves in professional development as well as curriculum development in the community's schools.

Engaged pedagogy distributes the responsibility for success among the school, teacher-educators, the community, and student-teachers. It fosters a shared vision, continuous evaluation and renewal of the partnership in order to develop a symbiotic mutualism (Bailey et al, 2002), and affords the participants opportunities to reap benefits that may not have been included within the original PDS framework. Keeping these ideas in mind, I then set out to investigate the ESL-specific PDS that was in beginning stages of development.

Broadlumber Elementary School

Broadlumber Elementary School (BES, a pseudonym) is located in the Southeastern United States and is part of a school system that serves a city of about 165,000 inhabitants and a district that serves 16,466 students. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Teaching English Language Learners: A Self-Study
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.