English Learner Resources
Learning can be a daunting task for students even when the language used in school matches the language they speak at home. English language learners (ELLs) not only contend with new content material, but they also must cope with instructions given in their non-native language. Teachers can help lessen ELLs' stress by becoming cognizant of their special needs. Below is a list of a resources designed to help educators teach students whose primary language is not English. Click on any of the images to go to the site described.
UEN's ELL Resources
Utah Education Network (UEN) is an excellent starting place, since they have a full page devoted to ELL resources. The site divides their resource list into six categories: General, Teaching Ideas, Resources, For Students, Forums, and finally News and Research. For each link, UEN describes what the site includes and how it might be beneficial.
Colorin Colorado's mission is "Helping children read....and succeed!" The cheery website is tailored to support Spanish-speaking families since 80% of ELLs first language is Spanish; in fact, the entire website can be viewed en Espanol. Despite their emphasis on Spanish, Colorin Colorado is currently in the process of expanding their resources to be inclusive of more languages. In addition to Spanish, they also offer reading tip sheets "for parents of children in Preschool through Third grade" in Arabic, Chinese, Haitian Creole, Hmong, Korean, Navajo, Russian, Tagolog, and Vietnamese. Colorin Colorado was one of the links suggested by UEN.
UCLA Language Materials Project
Another resource listed on UEN's site, "UCLA Language Materials Project: Teaching Resources for Less Commonly Taught Languages," nicely supplements the narrowness of Colorin Colorado's focus. UCLA's Language Materials home page includes a clickable map of the world. Once viewers have selected a region, they can scroll through a list of languages spoken in the region and learn about individual language profiles. This is an excellent--albeit more academic--resource. It could be a wonderful site for high school geography and history students to explore.
Games can be an effective way to make learning fun, and vocabulary.co.il has a wide variety. Twenty-four types of vocabulary games are listed at the top left of the site and language options are listed at the bottom right with flags symbolizing the language. The site also differentiates between ability/age level.
Rethinking Schools ELL Resources
Like UEN, Rethinking Schools has a page targeted to the needs of educators teaching ELLs. They list "Strategies for Improving Instruction for English Language Learners," "Strategies for Becoming More Culturally Competent,"a description of "Types of ESL and Bilingual Programs," and a lastly a list of additional resources from books to websites. They also link to their own specialized resource page entitled "Bilingual Education Resources."