In February, the TWT co-authors met via video conference for our quarterly team meeting. We discussed about our desire to learn more about what was happening to support students who were learning English as an additional language. While most of us see different approaches in the schools where we teach, coach, or consult, we aren’t engaged in this work on a daily basis. Therefore, we asked our readers if they were interested in sharing classroom stories, best practices, tools, and ideas. We had responses from EAL educators across the world who were delighted to share their expertise. Here’s a round-up of their posts, which you can read by clicking on each of the hyperlinks below.
Functional Grammar and Writing Workshop: A Hybrid Approach to Teaching Literacy to English Language Learners by Julie Fellmayer
Julie Fellmayer is an elementary school English Language Development and drama teacher at the International School of Brussels. Julie’s areas of interest include CLIL/ Genre Theory models of language learning, social justice and anti-oppression education, and positive discipline. Her writing has been featured in the online journals Hybrid Pedagogy and Identity, Education and Power. Julie posts regularly on her blog Learn Through It and you can follow her on Twitter @Learn_thru_it .
Comprehensible Input that Moves Multilingual Writers Forward by Therapi Kaplan
Therapi Kaplan has been a classroom teacher in Walnut Valley, California for 18 years. She is deeply passionate about providing accessible language to all students so they use literacy as a tool to construct their understanding of knowledge. Therapi has a Tier 1 Project GLAD (Guided Language Acquisition Design) certificate from the Orange County Department of Education. This training has equipped her with strategies to support all students, but mostly my multilingual learners.
Writing Workshop for ELLs: A Blog Series by Aishwarya Manjunath
Aishwarya Manjunath has been teaching English to middle-school students from in India since 2012. She is a novice teacher-researcher. She is interested in all things teaching and learning, language, and mental health. You may follow her on twitter @teachingtenets.
Technology-Enhanced Instruction for English Learners by Matt Renwick
Matt Renwick is an 19-year public educator who began as a 5th and 6th-grade teacher in Rudolph, WI. He now serves as an elementary principal for the Mineral Point Unified School District (http://mineralpointschools.org/). Matt also teaches online graduate courses in curriculum design and instructional leadership for the University of Wisconsin-Superior. He tweets @ReadByExample and writes for ASCD and Choice Literacy.
Nurturing Learners of Additional Languages in a Writing Workshop by Marina Rodriguez
Marina Rodriguez has been teaching 4th grade dual language arts for 13 years, in College Station, Texas. She grew up in Los Angeles, California and is biliterate, bicultural, and bilingual. She is a National Writing Project Heart of Texas Writing Project Teacher Consultant, Kidblog Ambassador, and a blogger.
Building Relationships and a Risk-Taking Environment with English Language Learners by Mary Sandoval
Mary Sandoval is an English as a New Language (ENL) teacher in the Capital Region of New York, primarily working with students in grades K-2. She’s almost at the end of her 11th year in education and is thankful to be expanding her professional learning network through the creation of a blog. English Language Learners (ELLs) are near and dear to Mary’s heart in so many ways since she was once an ELL herself. You can follow Mary on Twitter @MsSandovalENL.
Teaching English and Learning Hindi by Sruti Sriram
Sruti Sriram has been teaching reading and writing in some form for five years, but has been in the classroom for three. A native of the United States, she moved to India three years ago to work on education equity. She teaches English language and literature at the Avasara Academy in Pune, which primarily serves low-income girls.
Helping English Language Learners Discover Their ‘Voices’ Through Authentic Experiences by Barbara Suter
Barbara Suter is a retired teacher of English as a New Language students. She taught for 22 years in the East Meadow School District and for 25 years at Suffolk Community College as an adjunct instructor of English. She has been a member of the Long Island Writing Project for over 25 years and currently participates in the Two Writing Teachers weekly Slice of Life Story Challenge
The TWT Co-Authors are grateful to all of the educators who submitted a blog post for this round-up. Please note: All information is published in good faith and for ideas, awareness, and educational purposes only. The viewpoints expressed in each contributor’s blog post do not necessarily reflect the viewpoint of the TWT Co-Author Team.
I am a literacy consultant who has spent over a decade working with teachers to improve the teaching of writing in their classrooms. While I work with teachers and students in grade K-6, I'm a former fourth and fifth-grade teacher so I have a passion for working with upper elementary students.
I'm the author of Craft Moves (Stenhouse Publishers, 2016) and the co-author of Jump Into Writing (Zaner-Bloser, 2021), Welcome to Writing Workshop (Stenhouse Publishers, 2019), and Day By Day (Stenhouse, 2010).