Teaching Esl Students and Why It Is Important

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During the 1990s the immigrant population expanded quickly and by a large amount. According to Eggen and Kauchak (2007) “experts estimate that by the year 2020 two thirds of the school population will be African American, Asian, Hispanic, or Native American. This means there will be great cultural diversity in our society and in our schools.” Educators will need to be educated on how to teach in a diverse classroom. Teachers will need to have an understanding for English-language learning children and the way they learn. All educators must be able to teach ELL students while encouraging them to continue to use their native language while learning to speak English. Teachers must also remember to try to keep all families involved in their children’s education. “Enlisting parents’ help in identifying appropriate and meaningful goals and activities for family involvement in multicultural education is a first step” (Swick, 1995). “Teachers need to be aware of differences with in minority groups, different ethnic groups and attitudes. They also need to believe that all students can succeed regardless of diversity and they need to show this belief to the students. Teachers need to provide challenging work instead of mechanical curricula which is usually the norm for many ethnic and language minority students” (Zeichner, 1992).

In order to convey a positive, respective, and supportive attitude toward children’s home language teachers need to educate themselves on the culture and native language of the ELL students in their classrooms. Educators should encourage children to continue to use their native language while at home. This can be done by asking children to translate some words from English into their native language during lecture and class discussions. Educators can also incorporate some history lessons from the ELL student’s culture and home country.

Children who do not speak English as a first language may attempt to speak to their...
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