Linguist Stephen Krashen believes that people who have already learned a language fluently would be more successful in learning a new language if they would approach the learning process like children naturally do. In other words, if they would simply immerse themselves in the new language, express themselves without worrying about making mistakes, and keep communicating as best they can until they can sort out the language “nuances” through the language “data” they receive from listening to it in various contexts AND from others’ responses to what they say. The brain needs time to distinguish between meaningful units of sounds they aren’t in one’s native language, to identify common language structures and words/phrases used in various contexts, and to essentially create meaning from the massive amounts material it has to process and sort into a coherant message. The process of recognizing patterns of speech, attributing the meaning behind guestures and other forms of unspoken communication, and the various sound-symbol relationships required for reading and writing takes time. Krashen believes that focusing on the “form” of language (grammar) rather than on its “function” (usage) delays language learning because it inhibits language learners from speaking until they’re “ready” and, thus, limits the amount of time they would otherwise have to practice using it and learning as they go–like children do when they are acquiring their first and even additional languages.
For a more detailed explanation of his theory of language acquisition, open the link to his article below.
From literacy instruction to arts and technology integration, explore strategies for engaging English-language learners.
Project Look Sharp provides lesson plans, materials, training and support to help teachers integrate media literacy into their classroom curricula. English language learners can view the material as well to learn about U.S. and world history as well as to hear famous speeches made by political leaders.
Facing History and StoryCorps provides lessons about American history and social issues designed to promote critical thinking skills, empathy and tolerance, and a sense of civic responsibility. In addition to the link to “(Re)building Classroom Commuity Post-Election” below, the site also offers the posts and topics:
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Free printable ELA English Language Arts worksheets for students and teachers from kindergarten through high school. Everything from grammar worksheets to book report printables to college admissions verbal test prep.
Project Look Sharp offers lesson plans, materials, training and support to help teachers integrate media literacy into their classroom curricula.
English language learners: Have FUN while you learn from this site’s interactive games and activities using real-life situations. If you like this English in Life site, please share it with your friends!
This ESL Kids Stuff site offers songs, 1000+ worksheets, 1,500+ flashcards, readers, crafts, games, apps, lesson units, and even templates for student awards and lesson planning! Lessons are designed for children aged 3-11 years. Membership is US $29/year for unlimited access to downloadable and on-line material.
Teachers and tutors can go to the Teacher’s Resource page for ideas and continuing education. Among the items they’ll find on this page are links to the site’s ESL Kids Classroom Games & Activities list and an article entitled, “Adapt Your Lessons to Cater to the Different Learning Styles of Your Students.” I hope you find this site useful for your purposes!
The Color Vowel Chart below mimics the tongue position used to produce the English vowel phonemes along with a mnemonic word clue and color to help remind learners how to make the sound. Please access the site listed below to learn how to use it, to access the sounds from the interactive chart (click on the color to hear them) and for information on how to gain permission to use the chart in classroom settings. (The authors also sell poster-sized versions of the chart for $5 and sell a pack of 50 “mini-charts” for student use $12. Computer-generated sound files are available for free.)
Note: This above image may not be reproduced in any form or by any means without the express permission of the authors. Address all inquiries to the authors.