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Distance learning and English Language Learners

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Read the latest post from Larry Ferlazzo looking at distance learning for English language learners (ELLs).

Teachers and students around the globe have been facing challenging times as we face the COVID-19 pandemic.

For many of our students and their families, these challenging times have turned into a crisis.

Though a vaccine might offer signs of hope, it’s going to be many months until its distribution has a substantial positive impact on our communities.

I’d like to offer a number of suggestions that educators around the world might or might not find helpful as they craft their own responses to this unique environment.  Though I’ve been a British Council contributor for many years, this particular post is very different from previous ones. 

It has three parts.

Part One is a PDF of slideshow I used when leading a professional development session on Distance Learning and English Language Learners (ELLs).

Download the PDF below

Part Two is a video of three of our school’s ELL students sharing responses to these four questions:

  1. What are teachers doing now online that you think helps you learn English and understand what they are teaching in English?
  2. What are teachers doing now online that you think are making it harder for you to learn English and making it harder for you to understand what they are teaching in English?
  3. What do teachers do in the classroom (when we are at Burbank) that helps you learn English and understand what they are teaching in English?
  4. What do teachers do in the classroom (when we are at Burbank) that make it harder for you to learn English and make it harder for you to understand what they are teaching in English?

Watch the video below

Part Three is comprised of links to a series of six posts that I wrote about specific elements of Distance Learning and ELLs.

I’d love to hear reactions, criticisms, and additional suggestions.  We’re all in this together!

Larry Ferlazzo teaches English and Social Studies at Luther Burbank High School in Sacramento, California. He has written or edited  twelve books on education, include four on teaching English Language Learners, writes a teacher advice blog for Education Week Teacher, and has his own popular resource-sharing blog.

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