Important Documents All teachers of ELLs should receive copies of these documents from the ELL teacher. It is essential that you refer to these documents when planning for the ELLs in your classroom.
PSP (Program Service Plan): Each ELL student has a PSP, which is a legally binding document outling the student's English language proficiency level and the modifications/accommodations for which he/she qualifies.
W-APT stands for the WIDA-ACCESS Placement Test. It is an English language proficiency "screener" test given to incoming students who may be designated as English language learners. It assists educators with programmatic placement decisions such as identification and placement of ELLs. The W-APT is one component of WIDA's comprehensive assessment system.
WIDA-ACCESS ACCESS for ELLs (Assessing Comprehension and Communication in English State-to-State for English Language Learners) is a secure large-scale English language proficiency assessment given to Kindergarten through 12th graders who have been identified as English language learners (ELLs). It is given annually in WIDA Consortium member states to monitor students' progress in acquiring academic English.
General Assessment Recommendations · Provide English language learners with instruction that will enable them to develop higher-order proficiencies (exposure to challenging learning situations, where students know their expectations, are given multiple opportunities to learn, using higher order thinking skills and have equitable access to curriculum.)
· Teachers of ELL should make connections between academic tasks and home cultures (make instructional use of personal and cultural knowledge of students while at the same time helping them reach beyond their cultural boundaries.)
· Give ELL additional time and support when they are learning classroom uses of language that they are unfamiliar with (support and extra time to expand language use)
· Use authentic assessments that draw on ELL real-life experiences (kids are better able to apply essential concepts, knowledge, and skills; more effective with a frame of reference)
· Use multiple assessment strategies so ELL have a wide range of options when showing what they can do (multiple attempts, flexibility, time for reflection of work)
Establish scoring criteria for classroom performance assessments that are appropriate of ELL (background, expertise of scorers, clearly defined criteria)
Develop clear guidelines for interpreting assessment results so the ELL are not placed inappropriately in special education classes. (should distinguish between ELLL who are performing unsatisfactorily in school because of limited exposure English LL vs. kids who demonstrate communication disorders and need specially designed instruction)
· Schools should make significant investments in professional development (teachers need preparation in research based approaches; need proficiencies in content and theories of learning but knowledge of include of culture and language on student learning and performance)
Lachat, M.A. 2004. Standards-Based Instruction and Assessment for English LanguageLearners. Thousand Oaks, CA. Corwin Press.
Accommodations for ESL
There are three criteria for determining appropriate assessment accommodations that must be strictly adhered to:
1. Must be allowed for state assessments by 703 KAR 5:070 Inclusions for Special Populations regulation;
2. Must have been part of ongoing classroom instruction;
3. Must be listed in the student’s Program Services Plan (PSP)
Instruction(the method of presentation, classwork expected of the student, and materials provided to the student)
Assessment(the manner in which student knowledge is evaluated and graded)
Strategies for Modifying Instruction Many teachers feel overwhelmed at the prospect of modifying their classroom instruction for ELL students. They may assume they should prepare completely different lesson with completely different materials for these students. That simply is not true! A few simple strategies will help you change the existing lesson so that the ELL student can make progress too. Remember: the definition of 'modify' is to change something that already exists, not to create something new.
The key to success in modifying instruction and materials is PRE-PLANNING!!! If you can modify your materials BEFORE the lesson, the ELL student will be able to make the most of the existing instructional time.
Early Beginner:these students can be the most challenging to reach, as their communication skills are not well developed.
Try to write out as many simplified directions for them as you can.
Provide graphic organizers to them.
Pre-copy the class notes and give students the notes before the lesson.
Use highlighters and sticky notes to identify the material you expect them to focus on.
High Beginner / Intermediate:
Identify several essential ideas for students to learn and a concentrated list of core vocabulary.
Provide a shortened list of the vocabulary that you've identified as important for this unit.
These ELL students should be expected to learn the majority or all of the content that you teach to regular education students. However, they may need more time to complete assignments, demonstrate their knowledge, and need more support and structure during lessons and assignments. The trick to working with these students is to continually check in with them regarding how much they understand. Because these students have strong social language skills, it is easy to assume that they understand much more than they do and/or that they have the background knowledge needed to make good progress.
Strategies for Modifying Assessments
We recommend identifying the way in which you will assess the ELL student at the outset of the unit. It is also beneficial to provide practice assessments so that the students can become familiar with the assessment format.
Early Beginner / Beginner students: Alternate assessment
Label a picture or diagram
Draw a picture that demonstrates a key idea
Explain an idea orally
Answer a few questions orally
Draw lines between vocabulary terms and pictures
Allow students to submit a project in lieu of an in-class test.
High Beginner / Intermediate students: Simplified and/or Modified assessments
Simplified:Develop a short assessment that evaluates only the essential ideas and core vocabulary that the ELL student was required to learn.
Multiple choice with two answers
Matching with a limited number of choices
Word banks provided
Modified: Use the same test that you've prepared for regular education students, but shorten it and focus on essential ideas and core vocabulary.
Require students to complete only certain portions of the test
Provide a word bank (write it on the test)
Allow students to choose to answer 5 of 10 questions
Provide multiple choice answers for questions that would normally require students to create an answer
Shorten the length of the required answer
For multiple choice, cross out one or two of the incorrect answers