I teach 2nd grade. How does daily 5 and cafe work for a student who does not speak English? Where does one begin?





Michelle Jenkins

Hello! Daily 5 works wonderfully with students who are learning English! I teach first grade and have had many ESL students in my class, including new comers. Here are a few ideas and suggestions that come to mind:
-Listen to Reading: start off with books on CD, or tablets or computers with Internet connection to online books so the students may listen to English along with pictures to go with the words that they hear. It is also alright to find a few online or audio CD books that are in their native tongue. This will give their brains a little break from the overwhelming time on task of having English bombarded all around them during the whole day.
-Find out what your ESL students know in their native tongue, and assess what they know/don’t know (many sounds overlap in various languages, and often students know how to read in their native language so they already have a strong base).
-During one on one conferencing, begin reading with the child books with simple, repetitive and patterned phrases with pictures such as, “This is an orange”, or “The girl sees a cat”.
-Then create books together with similar formats as the patterned books, so the student may watch you write a patterned text and then have the student continue the same text with different words, such as, “The girl sees a blue bird”, and have them continue writing the same sentence structure with different animal names. Since they might now know the animal names, have them draw a picture of the animal in the space of the word such as: “The girl sees a red (picture of ladybug)”. After you show the student how to write the patterned sentences, have the student write to self. When you have another moment with the student, go back to what the student wrote and drew and write the name of the animal next to the picture.
-Have the students keep these little books with the words in them in a special folder to keep them altogether for future reference; and/or keep a notebook of a collection of simple phrases with words and pictures for future use during writing time, or even during reading time to reread.
-use the smart board for your newcomer ESL students to use for writing words. Provide cards (already made or bought) that have a picture of common objects on them with the word, such as a picture of a ball with the word ball on it. Have them write the word on the smart board and draw a picture next to the word.
-Pair them with someone a lot especially at the beginning. For read with a buddy, have someone read to them. They may echo read or just listen to the person reading. The ESL student will also be able to read their newly made patterned books for extra practice with sentence structure and vocabulary.
-Word Study and Word Work: Depending on their language and developmental level in word study, it may be beneficial to match words with pictures and to begin with letter identification if need be. During independent Word Work, they may sort these images with letters and words. There are also computer programs or online sites that can allow them to listen to sounds and words. Lakeshore, Inc has wonderful object tubs for letter sounds and blends. They may also use these objects to match to words and sounds. Start off by modeling how to do it and after teaching the object words, they will begin to do it on their own. It also would be good to just have the students explore these objects with the words on their own.
-be a model for demonstrating good sentence structure and complete sentences. Be sure to have high expectations for other students to use complete sentences at all times (especially when answering questions). Rephrase sentences that the student attempted to model proper structure and pronounciation, being careful not to “correct” but to model the proper way so that the student hears the correct way and then may repeat it for practice.
-During mini lessons, use lots of poems and songs with pictures
These are just a few things that come to mind as you begin to do Daily 5 with newcomer ESL students! Be patient and give them time to acquire the language, while still making sure to meet with them one on one on a regular basis to keep challenging them with new learning and exposure to new vocabulary and language experiences. Best wishes!

Linda Luzon

Thank you for responding in such depth-very helpful!

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