Touro TESOL Candidate Alessia Tartamella on Program Options and Teaching Models for English Language Learners/Multilingual Learners

Online Discussion boards ensure that course questions and answers are available to all participants, create a repository of shared information and create a permanent record of all postings. Yet, apart from these points, Online Discussion Boards throughout the semester showcase students in-depth analysis of the assigned materials and their scholarly trajectory. This week I am featuring Touro College, TESOL candidate Alessia Tartamella’s excellent contribution.

Alessia Tartamella, a 3rd Grade NYC Public School teacher in Brooklyn, New York, has taught English Language Learners since 2016. She received her Bachelors Degree of Business Administration at Brooklyn College and her Masters Degree in Teaching Children grades 1-6 at Brooklyn College. Currently, she attends Touro College to pursue an extension in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages. This will be her last semester at Touro College. “I hope to soon move on to become a certified TESOL teacher in the NYC Public School system.”

  1. In NYS,  what are the  Program Options for English Language Learners/Multilingual Learners?

The Program Options for English Language Learners and Multilingual Learners are Transitional Bilingual Education Program (TBE) , Dual Language (DL) , One Way Dual Language Program, Two Way Dual Language Program and English as a New Language (ENL). (Program Options for English Language Learners/Multilingual Learners, n.d.)

2. Name the five different models currently in use that integrate language and content instruction – refer to Celce-Murcia Unit III readings.

There are different models that teachers may use when lesson planning. According to Celce-Mucia in Unit III, these models were created by experts with different views and embedded theories. The first model is the Hunter model (Hunter, 2004). This model is also known as five-step, seven-step, or nine-step model. Another model is the presentation-practice-production model (PPP). This is used mainly in beginning-level classes of language learning.  The next model is the engage-study-activate (ESA) model. This is a more versatile model than the PPP model because it allows the instructor to adapt the lesson delivery in different ways. This can be taught in different time frames and with students’ engagement in mind.  Another teaching model is the Sheltered Immersion Observation Protocol or SIOP model. This is a model developed with the intention of teaching students learning English from grades K-12th grade.  With this model, the instructor’s intention is to teach language and content at the same time. This model first started as a rubric for teacher’s observations, and evolved into a lesson-planning model.  Finally, the last teaching model is encounter, clarify, remember, internalize, and fluently use (ECRIF). This is a common model used when teachers drill strategies or vocabulary to students. 

3. Name the model that you use most and why.

In my instruction, I mainly use the Sheltered Immersion Observation Protocol or SIOP model. It is very important for students to learn content while learning a new language. In my school, teachers are expected to teach a lot of content to students, even if they do not speak English yet. We are considered a content based school.  This method of teaching English could be challenging for a teacher because it incorporates many things into a lesson, however, for a student who is learning English it allows them to use what they know in their lives and apply it to what they are learning.  This model also allows the teacher to focus on language objectives to get students to the goal or goals of the lesson. Students and teachers can activate prior knowledge, teach vocabulary and apply the lesson to real world situations to motivate students.  Then, students go on and participate in language objectives, strategies and interactions. Finally, students will practice and apply.  This model is what I am required to use in my classroom and one that I enjoy using as a third grade TESOL teacher.

In addition to this model, my school uses the ECRIF model when teaching phonics and reading to students learning how to read. We use a program called Orton-Gillingham, where students participate in language drills that they apply to reading a writing.  This strategy works well for many special education students and some ELLs, but not all. Students are taught the rules of English grammar and spelling.  After they are taught the basic rules through drills and repetition, they use them in practice for reading and writing.

4. Gather some information on student assessment from your school district. What kinds of student assessments are regularly administered, and in what language? If the district includes non-native speakers of English, are testing and assessment requirements modified or altered in any way to accommodate them? If so, how?

There are different assessments given to students in different situations.  During a student’s registration process, they are assessed through an interview and questions to determine the child’s ability in English and if the child may need special education services. This interview process is done by a trained teacher, sometimes a TESOL one and the school psychologist, if necessary. 

For learning, my school district uses different forms of assessments, but they are not altered to accommodate non-native speakers of English.  In the beginning of the year, students are given reading, writing, and math assessments. All students take the same assessment and they are all given without the teacher reading the questions to them.  However, my school district uses an online program called iReady that is tailored to all student’s needs. While the student takes the assessment, the online program adapts itself to the child’s ability.  It alters questions in different subject domains and only asks the just-right amount of questions for a child.  When the student continuously does not know answers to questions, the assessment ends. If a student continuously gets questions correct, the assessment continues on, adding difficulty to the assessment. This is a good way to get accurate ability levels in all students and does not allow them to feel discouraged. This assessment also reads to students, includes videos and engaging characters to keep students interested and excited. 

5. What is the purpose of Commissioner’s Regulations – Sections 117 http://www.p12.nysed.gov/sss/lawsregs/117-1-3.html (Links to an external site.)

The purpose of the Commissioners Regulations Sections 117 is that students must be given a screening prior to entering a school to develop a plan for learning for each child.  The students should be given this assessment to ensure they are placed in the correct learning setting. This is to ensure students with special needs are given a fair placement.  Additionally, speakers of other languages should be given a choice of a placement in a Dual language class, or ENL class when registering, if the school has the option. 

6. How do the BLUEPRINT FOR ENGLISH LANGUAGE LEARNER/MULTILINGUAL LEARNER (ELL/MLL) SUCCESS http://www.nysed.gov/common/nysed/files/nys-blueprint-for-ell-success.pdf (Links to an external site.) and CR Part 154 Comprehensive ELL Education Plan (CEEP) and ENL staffing requirements connect with each other? http://www.nysed.gov/bilingual-ed/cr-part-154-comprehensive-ell-education-plan-ceep?   (Links to an external site.)http://www.nysed.gov/common/nysed/files/programs/bilingual-ed/enl-k-8-units-of-study-table-5-6-15.pdf (Links to an external site.)

These three resources have many things in common, but the most common theme is the plan for fair instruction for English Language Learners.  These three resources highlight the importance of a structured program for the diverse levels of English Language Learners.  They all enforce inclusivity and structure.  The Blueprint for English Language Learners/MLL success highlights 8 different aspects to teaching English at the highest regard.  The mission of this blueprint is described as “The mission of the New York State Education Department’s (NYSED) Office of Bilingual Education and World Languages (OBEWL) is to ensure that all New York State (NYS) students, including English Language Learners/ Multilingual Learners (ELLs/MLLs), attain the highest level of academic success and language proficiency. ” (The Blueprint for English Language Learners/MLL success, n.d.).  

The Commissioner’s Regulations 154 states that all English Language Learners must experience learning as described in the education plan for ELLs. Principals and staff must submit a plan of action for these students.  By using the ENL staffing requirements, principals can align staffing and instruction to fit the needs of the students in the school. These three resources go hand in hand because they demonstrate the appropriate planning and instruction required for a school to fairly and legally education ELL students. 

7. List 3 surprising fact you learned about in Celce-Murcia Chapter 32: Approaches to School-Based Bilingual Education Mary McGroarty & Shannon Fitzsimmons-

  • “Bilingual education is not only for recent immigrants; there are also approaches aimed at monolingual students who speak only the majority language and wish to develop strong proficiency in another language” (Celce-Murcia, 503)
  • “In the United States, there is a great deal of interest in two-way immersion model designed to serve both language minority and language majority children who wish to learn through the medium of two languages and develop literacy skills in both languages. ” (Celce-Murcia, 506)
  • Although teachers are vital, they are not the only relevant personnel. The presence of school administrators who understand bilingual instruction, other bilingual instructional personnel such as classroom aides and librarians, and bilingual staff members such as shcool secretary increase the likelihood of consistent and effective bilingual instruction.

Citations

Blueprint for English Language Learner/ Multilingual Learner Success THE STATE EDUCATION DEPARTMENT / THE UNIVERS ITY OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK Office of Bilingual Education and World L anguages. (n.d.). http://www.nysed.gov/common/nysed/files/nys-blueprint-for-ell-success.pdf (Links to an external site.)

Celce-Murcia, M., Brinton, D., & Snow, M. A. (2014). Teaching English as a second or foreign language. Boston: National Geographic Learning

CR Part 154 Comprehensive ELL Education Plan (CEEP). (n.d.). New York State Education Department. Retrieved September 28, 2020, from http://www.nysed.gov/bilingual-ed/cr-part-154-comprehensive-ell-education-plan-ceep?

CR Part 154-2 (K-8) English as New Language (ENL) Units of Study and Staffing Requirements. (n.d.). Retrieved September 28, 2020, from http://www.nysed.gov/common/nysed/files/programs/bilingual-ed/enl-k-8-units-of-study-table-5-6-15.pdf

Program Options for ELLs/MLLs. (n.d.). New York State Education Department. Retrieved September 28, 2020, from http://www.nysed.gov/bilingual-ed/program-options-english-language-learnersmultilingual-learners

Author: drcowinj

Education is our passport to the future, for tomorrow belongs only to the people who prepare for it today,” determined Malcolm X at the O.A.A.U.’s [Organization of Afro-American Unity] founding forum at the Audubon Ballroom. (June 28, 1964). (X, n.d.) Dr. Jasmin Bey Cowin a Fulbright Scholar completed the Education Policy Fellowship Program (EPFP™) at Columbia University, Teachers College. Dr. Cowin served as the President of the Rotary Club of New York and Assistant Governor for New York State; long-term Chair of the Rotary United Nations International Breakfast meetings; and works as an Assistant Professor at Touro College, Graduate School of Education. Dr. Cowin has over twenty-five years of experience as an educator, tech innovator, entrepreneur, and institutional leader with a focus on equity and access to digital literacy and education in the Sub-Saharan Africa region. Her extensive background in education, administration, not-for-profit leadership, entrepreneurial spirit, and technology innovation provide her with unique skills and vertical networks locally and globally. Dr. Cowin participates fully in the larger world of TESOL academic discipline as elected Vice President and Chair-Elect for the New York State, NYS TESOL organization, for the 2021 conference. Ongoing research, expressed in scholarly contributions to the advancement of knowledge is demonstrated through publications, presentations, and participation in academic conferences, blogging, and other scholarly activities, including public performances and exhibitions at conferences and workshops. Of particular interest to her are The Blockchain of Things and its implications for Higher Education; Current Global Trends in TESOL; Developing Materials and Resources in Teaching English; E-learning; Micro and Macro-Methodologies in TESOL; E-Resources Discovery and Analysis; and Language Acquisition and the Oculus Rift in VR.

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