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Beta Project Home > ELL

James Cohen, from the Division of Curriculum and Instruction in the College of Education at Arizona State University, has graciously offered to share with us two handouts he has created.  The first is a handout called Hints for teaching ESL Students and the second is and handout on creating instructional questions that are comprehensible for ESL students.  The second handout also has wonderful suggestions to help ESL instructors find suitable texts for their students.

James Cohen also shared some suggestions on books that he believes are particularly useful for new ESL/ELL instructors:

Samway, K. D., & McKeon, D. (1999). Myths and realities: Best practices for language minority students. Portsmouth, NH: Heinemann.

Crawford, J. (2000). At war with diversity: US language policy in an age of anxiety. Clevedon, England: Multilingual Matters LTD.

Krashen, S. (1996). The case against bilingual education. Culver City, CA: Language Education Associates.

Tse, L. (2001). "Why don't they learn English?": Separating fact from fallacy in the U.S. language debate. New York: Teachers College Press.

In addition, Mr. Cohen has made five specific suggestions for instructors working withELL/ESL students who have joined a preestablished classroom, which are:

1. Buddy system: if there is a particularly caring and giving individual who the teacher respects, pair the EL with that student to assist him/her with the daily activities.

2. Teach the new student the routines and the language that goes along with the routines.  At least this way, the student feels like he/she knows a little of what is going on each day.

3.  Do not stick the kid in the back of the room and try to forget about him/her, like most teachers do.  Despite the difficulties, try to include the child as much as possible in the classroom activities.  

4.  If there is another student in the room who speaks that child's language, pair them up.

5.  Use your body to explain things, (i.e. Total physical response).

For more book suggestions (including an annotated bibliography about teaching English as a Second Language) and a list of helpful websites on this topic, please click here.



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Updated: December 16, 2008