Touro TESOL Teacher Candidate Christine Agnello’s website review for EDDN 639 – Trends and Current Issues in Second Language Acquisition

Christine Agnello is currently a TESOL candidate at the Touro College TESOL graduate program. She has worked with children for over fifteen years and looks forward “to becoming a classroom teacher who can help my English language learners succeed in their academic career.”

Ms. Angelo’s submission is exemplary as it focuses on 6 websites or applications featuring:

  1. The Common Core Standards as they relate to ELLs
  2. The New York State English as a Second Language Achievement Test (NYSESLAT)
  3. The Sheltered Instruction Observation Protocol (SIOP), the Specially Designed Academic Instruction in English Protocol (SDAIE), and the Cognitive Academic Language Learning Approach Protocol (SIOP)
  4. NCLB & AYP requirements and RTTT
  5. Bilingual Education

Website 1: Common Core

 http://www.nysed.gov/bilingual-ed/parents-guide-common-core-state-standards-ccss 

This website is about the New York State common core standards and how they apply to English language learners. This website offers a wide variety of information to help guide parents and guardians in understanding the common core standards and how they apply to ELLs. When you first click on this link, you are brought to a page that showcases a video of a bilingual classroom; from there, you will find information regarding the Common Core State Standards (CCSS). It is explained that the CCSS are meant to make sure that all children succeed once they graduate from high school. This website explains that the CCSS are essential because they help all children, regardless of their age, race, gender, or background. The website offers a description of the CCSS, which states clear expectations for what each student should know in key critical areas of reading, writing, speaking, and listening. This website is meant to provide parents and guardians with the standards as a way to help them work along with their child’s teachers in guiding their children to be successful. 

A positive aspect of this website is that it provides a ‘Parent Workshop Backpack Guide’ in multiple languages. This will allow all families to become familiar with the CCSS, regardless of their home language. The backpack guide is a two-page information sheet, which details the CCSS and what they should expect to find in their child’s backpack in regards to learning. This information is vital to helping parents keep up to date on what is going on in their child’s academic learning. This website also offers a wide variety of information about ELLs regarding their education. Parents and guardians can navigate the website and view extra details by clicking on the links located on the left side of the screen. While it is significant that the website offers so much information, I do believe a negative is that there might be too much information which will cause parents and guardians to become overwhelmed. 

In the future, I would use this website to help guide the parents and guardians of my English language learners. I may reference this website during parent/teacher conferences, and use it as a guide to show parents and guardians where their children are in terms of their academics and what steps we could take together to get them on the level they need to be in regards to the common core standards. 

Website 2: NYSESLAT

https://www.engageny.org/resource/new-york-state-english-a-second-language-achievement-test-nyseslat-resources 

This website is designed to detail The New York State English as a Second Language Achievement Test (NYSESLAT). This website offers a wide variety of information in regards to the NYSESLAT, such as a description of the exam, how the exam is measured, and a checklist for review. This website provides a lot of information regarding the exam, and on the left side of the screen, you can view resources and materials that will be used to assess the exam. 

While this website is full of a lot of information, I do believe that it could be overwhelming for English language learner parents and guardians. The website is only in English, which will make it difficult for others to read and understand. At the bottom of the screen, this is another link which brings you to a ‘Parent Brochure.’ Once you click on this link, you are brought to another website which provides a brochure detailing the exam in a variety of languages. 

Although this website may be more geared towards teachers, I believe it is helpful for parents and guardians to view the information provided here. This information can help parents and guardians understand what the NYSESLAT is and what it entails for their children. In the future, I would love for my school’s main office to provide the information regarding this website to newly registered parents, as they can view the data before their child takes the exam. 

 

Website 3: The Sheltered Instruction Observation Protocol (SIOP)  

http://shelteredenglish.weebly.com/ 

This website is designed to offer you information regarding The Sheltered Instruction Observation Protocol (SIOP). As stated on the homepage of the website, it is understood that The Sheltered Instruction Observation Protocol approach is for teaching content to English language learners in a strategic way which will make the subject matter and its concepts comprehensible while promoting student’s English language development. This website provides information on the eight components of SIOP, as well as resources that can be used to implement. 

This website is very clean; there aren’t many areas to explore, which makes it easy to navigate. When you view the eight components link, you are brought to a well thought out PDF that details the eight components that you can use. This information can be useful for future teaching and is easily accessible. A negative to the website is that unfortunately, some of the links do not work, and you are brought to a website that is not helpful. 

In the future, I would use this website to help reference how I could use the Sheltered Instruction Observation Protocol (SIOP) in my classroom. With its clean interface, I feel like I would access it more often, as all the information easily laid out for me. 

Website 4: No Child Left Behind (NCLB) act

https://www.colorincolorado.org/article/no-child-left-behind-and-english-language-learners 

This website provides an article detailing the information regarding the No Child Left Behind (NCLB) act, and how it especially applies to English language learners. The article explains that the NCLB act requires all English language learners to receive quality instruction for learning English and grade-level academic content. This act allows flexibility for choosing programs of instruction, especially for ELLs. The article explains that states are required to develop standards for English language proficiency, and to link those stands to the state’s academic content standards. The article goes on to list the requirements of the NCLB act in correlation to English language learners. 

This website provides short but very insightful information regarding the No Child Left Behind act and its relation to English language learners. It gives details that I believe would be beneficial to parents and guardians of English language learners. The website provides alternative links to some terms which are not easily understood by parents or guardians unfamiliar to the act. While I find the site useful, I do find it disconcerting that the information is only provided in English.  

In my future, as an educator, I would use this website to inform parents/guardians about the No Child Left Behind act. I think this website would be excellent if it were used during a parent/guardian workshop, which could be set up for the beginning of the school year. This workshop could be conducted during the parent/guardian outreach time, which is mandated by the Department of Education for all teachers on Mondays and Tuesdays. I think it would be beneficial for there to be translators available, as each translator could assist in helping parents and guardians of a variety of languages understand what is being discussed. 

Website 5: https://www.nysut.org/resources/all-listing/research/fact-sheets/fact-sheet-nys-requirements-bilingual-education-and-english-new-language-programs 

This website provides information regarding the requirements for bilingual education and English as a new language program. This website offers a fact sheet, which gives you an outline and guide on these requirements. The website starts off by providing a background in bilingual education and English as a new language program and explains the amendments that are required of school districts in order to provide English language learners with opportunities to achieve the same educational goals and standards established for all students. The website also contains resources for English language learners, as well as definitions of key terms regarding English language learners. 

This website provides a lot of information and has it broken down into easy to follow sections. I believe that this information is vital for any teacher of English language learners, and it is essential to be knowledgeable of this information to reach your students. The definitions of the key terms are a positive aspect of this website, as they can be referenced frequently for clarification. Along the top of the site you can find resources that lead you to another page that has more information regarding educational news. The website itself is self-explanatory and easily accessible. There is also a PDF fact sheet, which is beneficial for understanding the information. 

In my future endeavors as an educator, I will use this website to reference the NYS requirements for bilingual education and English as new language programs. I think it is essential to keep yourself abreast of any new information regarding these programs, as that knowledge will help me better understand the opportunities available for my English language learners, and how I can apply them to my teachings. 

Application 6: NY State Learning Standards, developed by MasteryConnect, for ios. 

https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.masteryconnect.ny&hl=en_US

This application provides you with an overview of the New York State Common Core Standards. Upon opening the application, you are brought to a straightforward screen which states the standards and information regarding the developer of the application. Once you click on standards, you are brought to a screen that allows for a personal search, or you may click between standards for mathematics, language arts, social studies or science. Each standard provided you with a list of kindergarten through high school, and as you further explore the application you will be brought to the common core standards for each grade in each subject area. You can change the font, and you can make notes that can be referenced at a later time. 

I believe that this application is extremely beneficial to teachers. This application provides you with all the information you need regarding the New York State Common Core Standards, at the tips of your fingers. They are easily accessible, and the design of the application is clean and clear. There isn’t much to get confused by, even there are a lot of standards to reference. I believe that the ability to add notes and providing the user to do their own search is especially helpful. The only negative that I found was the lack of a bookmark of some sort just so it is easier to find the next time. 

I know that I will be able to implement this application in my future teaching practice, as it will provide a guide for myself to ensure that my lessons are aligned with the New York State Common Core Standards. I will be able to reference this application when designing my lessons and use the information provided to me to confirm that I am indeed teaching the information I need to help my students become successful. 

 

 

Author: drcowinj

As an Assistant Professor for TESOL and Bilingual Programs at Touro College, Graduate School of Education Dr. Cowin’s focus is on the Responsibility to Touro Students (Teaching), Responsibility to the Discipline (Scholarship), Responsibility to Touro College and Community (Service). Dr. Cowin strives to inspire students to be creative and to model the love of lifelong learning by inculcating the habits and attitudes that create agile mindsets. 21st-century learning extends well beyond the classroom, and Dr. Cowin incorporates takes full advantage of online learning technologies for L2 language acquisition and current global trends in teaching English as a Second Language She represents high levels of scholarship and participates fully in the larger world of TESOL academic discipline. Ongoing research, expressed in scholarly contributions to the advancement of knowledge is demonstrated through publication, presentation and participation in academic conferences, articles in Education Update, blogging and other scholarly activities, including public performances or exhibitions at conferences and workshops such as the Plekhanov University of Economics keynote address in 2018. Of special interest to her are The Blockchain of Things and its implications for Higher Education, Current Global Trends in Teaching English; Developing Materials and Resources in Teaching English – Methodology; E-learning & Micro-Methodology in Teaching English; and E-Resources Discovery and Analysis.

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