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What Instructional Techniques are Effective to Teach English Language Learners?

what instructional techniques are effective to teacher english language learner

Do you know how to answer this interview question in an interview: What kinds of instructional techniques should be used with English Language Learners?

Here is a potential answer to this interview question to help you get prepared for your next interview:

Many teaching techniques I use are proven by research to be successful with ELLs. Creating a successful ELL learning environment requires the student’s native language to be respected and encouraged.

If possible, the teacher or assistant should speak the native language to facilitate communication and use the “Preview/Review” technique. In that technique, a lesson is previewed in the student’s native language for comprehension but taught in the second language for language development.

Parents should be encouraged to talk and read to their children in their mother tongue. Incorporate the native culture language into the curriculum through literature, history, music, food, and dance. Students should never be discouraged from using their native language.

Teachers should be aware of the four Stages of Language Development and not expect students to start speaking English until the listening period is over. Teachers should not confuse mastery of basic, everyday English with mastery of academic language, which takes five years or more to develop.

Specially designed academic instruction in English (SDAIE). An umbrella term for a variety of teaching techniques.

Teachers need to use comprehensible input when teaching English Language Learners, including creating a print-rich environment. The teacher should slow down their speech and use clear, simple, repetitious language when talking to children.

The instructor needs to model correct language, so students develop proper grammar. Using gestures, realia, visuals, manipulatives, and hands-on activities will improve students’ comprehension. Avoid (or teach) idioms and slang.

Comprehensible input is also called scaffolding.

The teacher should use key vocabulary when teaching language arts and comprehension strategies in reading (context clues, note-taking, and use of prior knowledge) and mapping strategies in writing.

The teacher should allow sufficient wait time for student responses; plan interactive lessons with frequent comprehension checks, and encourage cooperative learning. A thematic approach to learning helps build conceptual knowledge. Inform students of the objective for each lesson.

Demonstrating “how to” complete a project is very effective. The use of computer-assisted instruction is also very effective with English Language Learners.

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