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ERIC Number: EJ945680
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010
Pages: 9
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 28
ISSN: ISSN-1068-6177
Teaching English Language Learners: Recommendations for Early Childhood Educators
Shin, Sarah J.
Dimensions of Early Childhood, v38 n2 p13-21 Spr-Sum 2010
Some teachers are justifiably concerned that primary-age students who continue to use their native language skills might hamper their acquisition of English literacy. After all, isn't time spent in writing in the first language time that could have been spent writing in English? Many other teachers agree conceptually with the notion that supporting immigrant children's home languages and cultures is good practice. However, with increasing pressure to help English language learners quickly acquire academic English skills--so they can be successful on state-mandated high-stakes tests--many teachers wonder whether they can afford to have the "diversion" of students' native languages in their already full instructional schedules. Newcomer English learners are no longer exempt from taking standardized tests under the "No Child Left Behind Act," so there are enormous pressures to teach them as much English as possible as soon as possible. Teachers and schools are required to raise the test scores of their English learners and are increasingly focusing their instruction on the content covered by the tests. In fact, many schools are adopting scripted, one-size-fits-all curricular programs that consume large amounts of instructional time, leaving less time for best practices, including ESL and content area instruction that is tailored to the English proficiency and literacy levels of individual students. This article contends that while the testing requirements may push teachers to focus only on English, incorporating other forms of literacies--students' native languages, drawing, music, and drama--can help to accelerate immigrant children's acquisition of English literacy. (Contains 2 figures.)
Southern Early Childhood Association. P.O. Box 55930, Little Rock, AR 72215. Tel: 800-305-7322; Fax: 501-227-5297; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Early Childhood Education
Audience: Teachers
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Laws, Policies, & Programs: No Child Left Behind Act 2001