ERIC Number: EJ722680
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2004-Sep
Reference Count: 0
English Language Learners in the Science Classroom
Lincoln, Felicia; Beller, Caroline
Science Scope, v28 n1 p28-31 Sep 2004
The changing demographics within the nation's public schools present teachers with new challenges. According to the 2000 census, the state of Arkansas, for instance, experienced a 300 percent growth in its minority language populations since 1990. That means that educators in regions such as this, and across the nation, are faced with the dilemma of meeting the needs of and providing positive educational experiences for students whose first language is not English. Science education and English as a Second Language (ESL) have come under close scrutiny in the last few years, in part because of the pressure to improve students scores in science on high-stakes tests. But the reality is that teachers must educate an increasing number of children whose languages, backgrounds, and educational needs are unfamiliar to them. A primary concern among teachers is that they will dilute content for special populations of students. But by writing goals and objectives for the entire class, teachers are able to meet the needs of language learners without compromising content. The only adaptations that should be made are those that allow students better access to the information and ultimately to the attainment of the goals and objectives. Both pre- and in-service teachers have successfully used the strategies described in this article, in teaching language and cultural minorities. These strategies can be, and often are, used by ESL teachers in pull-out programs. Lists of 13 resources and 9 Internet resources are also included.
Descriptors: Second Language Learning, Educational Needs, High Stakes Tests, Educational Experience, English (Second Language), Science Instruction, Teaching Methods, Cultural Differences
National Science Teachers Association, 1840 Wilson Boulevard, Arlington, VA 22201-3000. Tel: 800-722-6782 (Toll Free); Web site: http://www.nsta.org.
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A