ERIC Number: EJ1003854
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2013-Mar
Reference Count: 21
Integrating Content and Mechanics in New Language Learners' Writing in the Primary Classroom
Meier, Daniel R.
Young Children, v68 n1 p16-21 Mar 2013
Writing and literacy development are crucial for the academic and social success of new language learners in the primary grades. Over the last 25 years, several terms have been used to describe the talents and needs of children learning new languages in early childhood settings. The term that the author prefers, and which he uses in this article, is "new language learners." It describes children still at an early stage of learning or "lacking fluency in a second or additional language but whose ultimate aim is to become as fluent as possible." New language learners need specialized support in linking oral and written language as they develop their writing skills. Of crucial importance in this process, and the focus of this article, is the successful integration of content (ideas, feelings, and information) with mechanics (punctuation, syntax, formats, and genres, such as how-to books, fairy tales, personal narratives, and poetry) across the K-3 spectrum (Meier 2011). This is "the" foundational stage for learning to write well for new language learners--it provides "developmentally appropriate and linguistically accessible" opportunities for writing growth. During these crucial years, new language learners gain accuracy in writing, confidence, motivation, and voice.
Descriptors: Literacy, Writing Skills, Written Language, Syntax, English (Second Language), Personal Narratives, Poetry, Fairy Tales, Teacher Role, Elementary Education, Second Language Learning, Early Childhood Education, Writing Instruction, Reading Aloud to Others, Developmentally Appropriate Practices, Young Children
National Association for the Education of Young Children. 1313 L Street NW Suite 500, Washington, DC 22205-4101. Tel: 800-424-2460; Tel: 202-232-8777; Fax: 202-328-2649; e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org; Web site: http://www.naeyc.org/yc/
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Early Childhood Education; Kindergarten
Authoring Institution: N/A