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Blog: Wednesday, October 3rd, 2018

New Team, New Year - The ELL Department Wants to Connect with You!

We are very excited to introduce two new members to the ELL Department. Joining Michelle Gill (K-5) as Helping Teachers are Rebecca Kandal (Middle/Secondary) and Laurel Mathew (International). No doubt, throughout the year, you will see these Helping Teachers in your buildings and working with staff. They bring a wealth of knowledge and strategies to support explicit English language instruction and development in your classes.

Building on the work that began last year, our focus, this year, is to build connections between ELL and classroom teachers further. We have started to develop collaborative teams in some schools and wish to continue to grow this model. Co-teaching and collaboration are great ways to enhance learning for English Language Learners in your class. This belief was evident at Blue Jay Elementary with the implementation of the ITELL (Integrating Technology with ELL ) Series by the ELL teacher, Sylvia Kruger. In collaboration with the classroom teacher, Sylvia continues to provide ELL students with repeated exposure and practice opportunities with language in order to become effective communicators.

“The addition of technology in our classroom allowed for yet another language support for ELL students. Using digital media allowed our students to hear authentic language even when working independently during Daily 5 routines, allowed for immediate visual representations when working with unknown vocabulary, as well as providing opportunities to represent their learning orally (speaking practice) without the added stress of speaking in front of peers and teachers. The classroom teacher and I were able to assess students’ growth together, and plan for future co-teaching lessons.” Sylvia Kruger

Our ELL team works closely with other members of the Curriculum Department to ensure that we are aligned with the implementation of the redesigned curriculum. You will often find groups of Helping Teachers (Curriculum, ELL, and LSS) working together with school staff members to support the needs of the students within our district.

We want to be in your schools, and in your K-12 classes, by providing multiple strategies that can help all learners find higher levels of success. If you are looking to target your instruction to reach more of the students in your class, please consider contacting the ELL teacher in your building, or one of the ELL Helping Teachers.

District Vice-Principal, Curriculum – ELL