7 Resources From the #MLLCHAT Community

Judie Haynes
Judie Haynes

I have long been an active member of a Twitter community that supports teachers of multilingual learners (MLLs). If you check the #MLLCHAT hashtag on Twitter (formerly #ELLCHAT), you will find many educators who write books, articles, and blogs on the topic of educating MLLs. This month, I share a sampling of blogs and articles that have been written by participants of the #MLLCHAT community.  Next month, I will review some of the books our Twitter community has written over the last year. Continue reading

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Scaffolding PD in Uzbekistan: From Theory to Classroom Practice

Laura Hancock and Tamrika Khvtisiahvili
Laura Hancock and Tamrika Khvtisiahvili

This post is part of a series on Scaffolding PD in Uzbekistan as part of the English Speaking Nation Secondary Teacher Training (ESN) Program. You can read an overview of the program here. The goal of the ESN program is to bring communicative classroom methods to 15,000 English teachers in Uzbekistan. In hopes of achieving this goal, the TESOL Core Certificate ProgramTM (TCCP) was given by foreign language professionals to selected English teachers. Having outreach and education programming is only half of the task; in addition, the methods must be applicable to Uzbekistan classrooms.

After the completion of the TCCP courses, teachers were required to participate in a 20-hour practicum, supervised by English language coaches, putting the theory from the coursework into action. To support the transition of best practices to the classroom, English language coaches scaffolded the teaching practicum with the Uzbek teachers through classroom observations, modeling of teaching, and reflective feedback. Following, we highlight some of the unique challenges—and some solutions—encountered while coaching the practicum. Continue reading

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3 Strategies for Formative Assessment and Feedback

Hetal Ascher
Hetal Ascher

Formative assessment refers to assessment used to inform our instruction, and formative feedback refers to the feedback we give to students to help them grow and learn. This blog post contains three strategies for formative assessment and feedback and some practical classroom-based activities to apply these strategies with your English learners. Continue reading

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STEM and ELT: What I Learned From My TESOL 2022 Participants

Darlyne de Haan
Darlyne de Haan

The TESOL 2022 Convention in Pittsburgh was absolutely outstanding! The sessions, presenters, and keynotes provided a plethora of information, strategies, and insights into many aspects of language development, diversity, equity, and inclusion challenges and successes for English learners (ELs). But the greatest takeaways personally for me were from the attendees at my sessions. Their questions, comments, excitement, and engagement let me know what resonated with them as well as the areas in which they needed advice and strategies.

Following are three “Big Moments” gathered from the attendees, which I noted from questions and tweets on Twitter. Yes! There were tweets and retweets. How exciting it was seeing that the strategies provided were valuable to attendees in their endeavor to provide ELs with what they need in learning STEM. Here they are: Continue reading

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5 Chrome Extensions for Language Learners

Brent Warner
Brent Warner

While we as teachers are always looking for ways to help our students, we often forget that there are tons of resources for them to help themselves on their language learning journey. Dedicated students can no doubt share with you a number of great resources that they use to help boost their own English, and it’s always a good idea to check in with them on their recommendations. Still, any language learner is always grateful for some tips and tricks to make things easier, so today we’re going to look at some Chrome extensions that you can share with your students to help them take more control over their learning on their own time. Continue reading

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Supporting Muslim Students During Ramadan: 4 Suggestions for Teachers to Consider

Naashia Mohamed
Naashia Mohamed

The Islamic holy month of Ramadan will be observed in April this year. It is a period of time when Muslims strive for spiritual purification through fasting, self-sacrifice, and increased prayer. In many Muslim-majority countries, working hours and school days are shortened to allow more time for religious observances and festivities.

However, Muslim students in other parts of the world do not enjoy this luxury and have to make adjustments to accommodate the demands of school life during a period where they abstain from all food and drink—including water—from dawn till sunset, and spend long hours in prayer during the night. While it is a month of spirituality and celebration, Ramadan can be quite exhausting for many people, especially for children and young people in school who observe fasting and increased rituals.

Cultural practices such as Ramadan provide excellent opportunities for schools and educational institutions to respect and embrace differences while building understanding and awareness. Continue reading

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Identifying TESOL’s Future Research Priorities

Scott Douglas
Scott Douglas

This blog is part of the TESOL Research Professional Council (RPC) Blog series.

The TESOL International Association’s professional councils support the association’s objectives with professional knowledge and advice. One of seven professional councils, the Research Professional Council (RPC) focuses on research by identifying priorities, promoting dialogues, fostering inquiry, and building expertise.

As part of this role, the RPC hosts the TESOL Research Agenda Fair each year during the TESOL International Convention. In 2021, the Research Agenda Fair was held online, and attendees had the opportunity to explore what the field’s research priorities should be over the next few years, with particular attention to bringing together research and classroom practice.

To facilitate the identification of research priorities, attendees worked together in four breakout rooms to reflect on topics in the field of TESOL that would benefit from more research. Two major themes emerged. Continue reading

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Checking Reading Comprehension? Ask Better Questions!

Barbara Gottschalk
Barbara Gottschalk

“Ms. Gottschalk, don’t you get it?” The young English learner (EL) asking me this question was genuinely concerned. He was perplexed because I kept asking him and his classmates questions about a picture—questions whose answers I obviously already knew. In other words, I was asking students display questions, like:

  • “This girl is sitting. What is she doing?”
  • “This girl is standing. What is she doing?”
  • “Is the balloon on the elephant?”
  • “Is the balloon behind the elephant?”

And so on ad nauseam. In the middle of the year, I’d been required to change my sessions with young ELs to use my district’s newly adopted direct instruction intervention program. The highly scripted curriculum had many drawbacks, but my student’s question to me indirectly pointed out one of its biggest—the lack of authentic communication. Continue reading

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