ELL Case Study
By Maria L Le
CI 5644: Working with Linguistically and Culturally Diverse Students in the Mainstream Classroom
ELL Case Study
David is a 1st grade, Spanish speaking student attending Pillsbury Math, Science, and Technology school in Minneapolis. He began at Pillsbury MST for the first time this school-year. Pillsbury has Native Language Literacy (NLL) program for Spanish speaking students. Had this program been unavailable, David would have qualified for ELL services. Spanish is the primary language spoken at home and among his Spanish speaking peers.
David’s NLL teacher has noticed little improvement in his literacy development in his native language. She has stated that David and his parents have very low literacy in both English and Spanish. This may play a major part of his very low reading abilities of the two languages. This one fact shows evidence that David has BICS (Basic Interpersonal Communication Skills) for both languages, but surprisingly little to no CALP (Cognitive Academic Learning Proficiency) in Spanish as well as English not only for himself – but his parents as well. The NLL teacher, regular education teacher, and I (his student teacher) have speculated whether his parents have confused the NLL program to a Spanish emersion program.
In addition to the NLL program at Pillsbury, David’s regular education teacher has done many things to adapt the curriculum in the classroom to fit the needs of the Spanish-speaking students. The morning meeting (focusing on the calendar, morning message, and counting on the 100’s number chart) is primarily done in English with some Spanish. The Spanish portions include the days of the week, the months of the year, and counting by 10’s to 100. To help the ELL learners like David in the classroom, a pointer is used when reading the morning message to show one to one correspondence. Many visuals are additionally available with labels accompanying them –...