Unlocking English Learners' Potential: Strategies for Making Content Accessible

A once-in-a-generation text for assisting a new generation of students.

Content teachers and ESOL teachers, take special note: if you’re looking for a single resource to help your English learners meet the same challenging content standards as their English-proficient peers, your search is complete. Just dip into this toolbox of strategies, examples, templates, and activities from ELL authorities Diane Staehr Fenner and Sydney Snyder. The best part? No prior training assumed! You’ll find inside every last how-to including:

  • How to scaffold instruction across content and grade levels
  • How to build background knowledge
  • How to analyze text through close reading and text dependent questions
  • How to promote oral language and vocabulary development
  • How to evaluate and use formative assessment

 

Reviews

“Much may be debated about what English learners need in order to be successful in school, but while that debate continues, teachers need access to sensible and accessible assistance to teach language and content to English learners right now. This new book by Diane Staehr Fenner and Sydney Snyder is the book to fill that need. In clear prose, accompanied by lively classroom examples and a series of engaging application activities, the authors target the topics of culturally responsive teaching, scaffolded instruction for oral language and reading, understanding academic language, and how to formatively assess student development in these areas. There is something here for both novice teachers and their more seasoned colleagues as Staehr Fenner and Snyder skillfully bring together the necessary ingredients to help teachers advance the language and content learning of their English learners.”

Alison L. Bailey, Professor Human Development and Psychology
Department of Education, University of California, Los Angeles

 

“Staehr Fenner and Snyder have written a much needed and illuminating text in the field of EL education that challenges educators to re-think language pedagogy in new ways that never dichotomize theory and practice. Not only do the authors provide numerous, sound and exciting hands-on instructional recommendations but they impressively model for educators what it means to link theory to practice by anchoring their applications to a comprehensive equity and cultural wealth framework.”

Lilia I. Bartolome, Ph.D., Professor of Applied Linguistics
University of Massacusetts Boston, College of Liberal Arts

 

“There is so much to love about Unlocking English Learners’ Potential. Diane and Sydney have created a truly readable text packed with practical suggestions for all educators who teach ELs! ESOL educators will find the focus on advocacy and leadership provides them with new ideas to take their practice to the next level. Content educators will appreciate the many easy-to-incorporate strategies for developing oral language and reading within their own academic content classes. And finally, the emphasis on teacher collaboration is vital to get everyone on board with an agenda that stresses equity and excellence for our culturally and linguistically diverse learners.  This text will undoubtedly be a hit with school PLCs and teacher education programs.”

Tim Boals, WIDA Executive Director
University of Wisconsin-Madison

 

“With so many resources available today and so little time to review them all, it becomes harder and harder for educators to know what to read and when to read it. What Diane and Sydney offer to educators of English Learners with this book is the unique opportunity to find in one resource a synthesis of the current research, examples of its impact in the classroom through authentic classroom vignettes, and a wealth of tools to get started in their own classroom.  Diane and Sydney have successfully combined their own expertise with that of colleagues and educators to bring to the field a valuable tool for professional growth and collaboration. Thank you!”

Mariana Castro, Director of Standards
WIDA Consortium at the Wisconsin Center for Education Research

 

“Continuing their advocacy for English learners to obtain an equitable education, Diane Staehr Fenner and Sydney Snyder offer a remarkable framework to guide teachers to better understand the complex nature of teaching diverse students. This book not only examines why a supportive school environment matters but also offers detailed, research-informed instructional strategies applicable to every class. It is must read for all teachers of English learners!”

Maria G. Dove, Ed.D., Associate Professor and Coordinator
Molloy College, New York, Graduate Education TESOL Programs

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ISBN 9781506352770
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Advocating for English Learners

Embrace the future by ensuring English Learners have a voice in school.

English Learners (ELs) are the fastest-growing segment of the K–12 population. But ELs and their families—who are in the process of learning English and navigating an often-unfamiliar education system—may not have a powerful enough voice to articulate their needs. Consequently, all teachers and administrators must advocate for this all-important diverse group of students who will become tomorrow’s workforce. This book demystifies the techniques of advocacy for ELs, including:

  • A shared sense of responsibility for EL success —Providing tools that every educator can use to ensure that ELs are effectively served.
  • An overview for administrators —Influencing policy and fostering a culture that meets EL needs
  • Advocacy for ELs’ success beyond Grade 12 —Equipping ELs for life after graduation, from higher education to career decisions

ELs will continue to grow in number, and leaving them and their families voiceless is simply not an option. No educator can miss this essential book.

 

Reviews

“In many ways, the history of American Education is the history of a quest for equality. Dr. Staehr Fenner lends a human face to the experience of English Learners and encourages us to think in terms of what attributes ELs bring to their learning experience and how others can benefit from their presence in the classroom. This book is a promising, uplifting, and much-needed call for action!”
Rosa Aronson, Executive Director
TESOL International Association, Alexandria, VA

“This book is a major contribution to the field in that it offers concrete actions administrators, teachers and parents can take to ensure best practices in schools for ELs. Diane Staehr Fenner demonstrates her extensive school-based experience by providing a highly practical handbook filled with useful models, tools, and professional development activities, all of which are well grounded in an assets-based and shared responsibility theoretical framework. This volume will meaningfully advance program quality, assessment and instructional practices, and family engagement through well-formulated advocacy initiatives as demanded by current EL teacher education standards. A welcome addition to all who care about the education of ELs PreK-12 and beyond!”
Nancy Cloud, Director, M.Ed. in TESL Program
Feinstein School of Education and Human Development, Rhode Island College

“This book makes a very important contribution to the field by highlighting the importance of advocacy and, through its numerous examples of advocacy in action, showing how to achieve equitable and excellent education for ELs.”
Diane August, Principal
D. August and Associates

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ISBN 9781452257693
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Evaluating ALL Teachers of English Learners and Students With Disabilities

Supporting Great Teaching

Teacher evaluation can be a valuable tool for evaluators and teachers alike. But it should never be used in a “one-size-fits-all” manner, especially when evaluating all teachers who work with the nation’s growing numbers of English learners (ELs) and students with disabilities.

Just as these diverse students’ needs require nuanced teaching methods, the evaluations of all teachers who work with these students require unique considerations. Such considerations are precisely what you’ll learn in this comprehensive, action-oriented book. Drawing on a focused array of authoritative research on supporting the success of ELs and students with disabilities, case studies, and action plans, the authors detail

  • Four principles for inclusive teacher evaluation of diverse learners that are compatible with the Danielson and Marzano frameworks
  • Sample specialized “look-fors” that evaluators can use and adapt to recognize effective teaching of ELs and students with disabilities
  • Strategies for coaching teachers of ELs and students with disabilities who need more support reaching these learners

Teaching ELs and students with disabilities can be one of the most challenging experiences in an educator’s career, and also one of the most rewarding if educators have the tools they need. With this book, the first of its kind, your school can become a leader in the field by taking part in conversations that center on equitable teaching of diverse learners as well as valid evaluation of those who serve them in classrooms.

 

Reviews

“Staehr Fenner, Kozik, and Cooper provide a framework for rich instructional conversations that moves teacher evaluation from the blame game to a collaborative and informative process that empowers teaching effectiveness and student learning.”
Spencer Salend, Emeritus Professor of Educational Studies
State University of New York at New Paltz

“In this book, the authors successfully outline an objective assessment framework that builds educators’ individual and collective capacity to improve their practice, not only with ELs but with all their students. A must-read for teachers and evaluators alike.”
Rosa Aronson, Executive Director
TESOL International Association

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ISBN 9781483358574
Price $37.95

Preparing Effective Teachers of English Language Learners

This is a printed book. It is also available in an eBook format for Kindle and Apple and Android. Options for platform are presented during checkout.

The growing number of English language learners (ELLs) entering U.S. classrooms has increased the demand for effective educators who work with this diverse student population. This book provides guidelines, examples, and strategies in applying the TESOL P-12 Professional Teaching Standards and serves as a resource to programs and teacher educators working with professionals who strive to make the route to language proficiency as smooth, challenging, and effective as possible.

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Price $54.95