Apr 1st 2016

Using Communication-Focused Activities in Designated English as a New Language Lessons (New York) (NovoEd)

English as a New Language (ENL); English Language Development (a.k.a. English as a Second Language (ESL); Designated ESL; Stand-Alone ESL/ENL; or, Focused Language Study) takes a variety of forms in present-day schools. In many schools, teachers teach ENL for a set amount of time (e.g., 30 minutes) a day. Other ENL teachers have multiple classes each day. In many cases, teachers think that they need to focus solely on grammar and vocabulary. However, emphasizing grammar and vocabulary is not the most effective for lasting and engaging language learning. Language was created to get things done, to communicate – and this is where this MOOC starts. It focuses on how to design and teach activities that are saturated with communication, and where needed, strategically develop grammar and vocabulary to support communication.

This course is in response to the call made by the New York State Education Department's Blueprint for English Language Learner (ELL) Success, which views all teachers as teachers of ELLs and asks educators to work across content areas to support ELLs to meet the demands of the Common Core Learning Standards.

Each session presents the focal area to work on for the following month (e.g., listening and watching, reading and viewing, writing/multimedia output, speaking, writing, and conversation), along with model activities and lessons that emphasize the focus, analyses of the models and non-models, lessons to be strengthened by participants, and a sample "expert" modifications of lessons. Whenever possible, we include samples of activities from two levels: Entering and Transitioning.

Course organization:

Session 1 – Course Overview & Communication-Focused Listening & Watching (January 20 - February 9)

Session 2 – Communication-Focused Reading & Viewing (February 10 - March 1)

Session 3 – Communication-Focused Speaking (March 2 - March 22)

Session 4 – Communication-Focused Writing (March 23 - April 12)

Session 5 – Communication-Focused Conversations (April 13 - May 5)