Resources for Educators - Blog

Apr 23
[Issue #1] 3 Tips for Engaging English Learners in Distance Learning Environments Written by Dr. Yee Wan

By now, many teachers have engaged their students with various types of distance learning. However the question remains, how can teachers specifically engage English Learners effectively?

Based on our team’s research, we recommend the following:

Tip #1: Connect with your students through care and compassion – Reach out to see how your students and their families are doing. Educators can work cohesively with parents, guardians and/or caregivers to fill in space for creative learning during this time. You might also ask families if they need help connecting with community resources. In addition to sending individual emails/messages or making calls, you can also schedule a weekly check-in conference call with all or selected students and/or families.

Tip #2: Schedule drop in hours  – Offer multiple options for how and when students can connect with you such as phone call, email or Facetime. Students are likely to reach out for support when there is flexibility and space for them to express their feelings.  

Tip #3: Support for language access – When designing live or recorded video lessons, you can make learning visible by speaking clearly and providing models or examples to scaffold the key concepts, including photos, illustrations, YouTube videos, primary language, etc...


For more information on this topic, check out: 

Larry Ferlazzo’s 7 Tips for Remote Teaching in YouTube. March 31, 2020. Larry Ferlazzo is a high school teacher at Luther Burbank High School, Sacramento, CA. 

Supporting multilingual learners (MLLs)/English language learners during the COVID-19 Shutdown, The Education Trust, March 2020

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