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ERIC Number: EJ784692
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2008-Feb
Pages: 4
Abstractor: Author
Reference Count: 16
ISSN: ISSN-0034-0561
The Cultural Divide of Discourse: Understanding How English-Language Learners' Primary Discourse Influences Acquisition of Literacy
Mays, Lydia
Reading Teacher, v61 n5 p415-418 Feb 2008
As the minority population and achievement gap in the United States continue to grow, the rapidly increasing epidemic of leaving English-language learners (ELLs) behind is one of grave concern for educators. Due to disparities between academic Discourses and ELLs' primary Discourse, a free and equal education, as claimed by the U.S. government, may, in actuality, be far from equal and costing ELLs dearly. This article elicits thought-provoking questions relating to the ways in which ELLs' primary Discourses serve as a barrier to school success because of academic Discourses embedded within school curriculums and assessments. This article also urges teachers to identify and acknowledge the significance of the role their own Discourses play in their approach to teaching ELLs and provides strategies to link the primary Discourse of ELLs and the academic Discourse of schools.
International Reading Association. 800 Barksdale Road, P.O. Box 8139, Newark, DE 19714-8139. Tel: 800-336-7323; Fax: 302-731-1057; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Teachers
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A