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ERIC Number: ED516927
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2007-Jun
Pages: 16
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 0
Colorin Colorado! ELL Starter Kit for Educators: Tools for Monitoring Language Skills
American Federation of Teachers (NJ)
Keeping periodic track of the progress English language learners (ELLs) are making in their second language acquisition skills is essential. Learning a second language is a complex process. It's important for educators to gauge each student's abilities and skills regularly; each English language learner will acquire second language knowledge and skills at his or her own pace. It is especially important to keep track of these academic language skills because English language learners may acquire social language skills (the language used in informal interactions, such as on the playground) a lot faster; this may mask their true progress learning academic language (the type of English found in textbooks and assessments). This starter kit provides helpful forms for PK-12 educators who work with ELLs to find out if they're on track learning the important academic English skills they need to be successful. In this kit, educators will find: (1) monthly tracking forms that assess students' level of progress on various reading and oral communication skills; (2) a glossary of common phrases and words used in Spanish to facilitate initial immediate communication with students; (3) a list of Spanish-English cognates; (4) a list of some recommended bilingual, culturally appropriate storybooks for children; and (5) information on PK-3 literacy tip sheets available for parents in 11 languages. This resource is part of the "For Educators" section of Colorin Colorado--the partnership project between the American Federation of Teachers (AFT) and the Reading Rockets project of PBS station WETA. The words "Colorin Colorado" are significant because they are part of the popular and playful ending phrase to virtually all children's stories and fairy tales in Spanish-speaking countries. The meaning is similar to "and they lived happily ever after." This starter kit was developed with Spanish-speaking ELLs in mind (because they account for more than 80 percent of all ELL students in the United States), but the monitoring forms also will be helpful for students from other cultural and linguistic backgrounds.
American Federation of Teachers. 555 New Jersey Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20001. Tel: 202-879-4400; Web site:
Publication Type: Guides - Classroom - Teacher; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education
Audience: Teachers
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: American Federation of Teachers