Newcomers You have the whole world in your hands! Who is a newcomer: Newcomer students are recent immigrants: *who have little or no English proficiency *who may have had little or no formal education in their native countries Primary Goals Primary goals of a newcomer student: *develop English skills *acculturate to US schools *awareness of school/classroom expectations Their needs will be much different than the traditional ELL student who receives language support through pull- out services. WHERE DO I BEGIN? Before the student arrives: *Learn about the student’s culture. Culturegrams is a good resource to learn about the newcomer’s culture. * Sensitize mainstream students to the newcomer’s challenges. Share some background information about the student’s native country. Have an adult speak or read to the class in the student’s native language. How did you feel? *Help your newcomer develop pride in their native country. Display the flag and/or map of their native country. Creating A Welcoming Environment *Learn to pronounce the student’s name correctly. Don’t let your new student lose his/her name. Americanize a student’s name by parent request only. *Find out who speaks the student’s native language in the building. This will be a big help at the beginning. *Obtain a name and number of an interpreter who can help with family communication. CPS has a list of interpreters in almost every language. ASSIGN PEER BUDDIES A peer buddy can: *Help the student learn the classroom routine. *Sit with them in the lunchroom. *Include them in games at recess. *Listen to taped books with them. *Walk them to the ELL classroom. *Play games with them in class. *Alternate peer buddies throughout the day. Both will blossom. Buddies gain in self-esteem and the ELL student will feel welcome in your class. SET UP A LANGUAGE LISTENING CENTER This center can include: *a computer with headphones to use websites like: Rosetta Stone and Starfall. *a language card reader with headphones *books that have a cd/tape to listen to and follow along • Taped music in both English and native country, if possible. • Use these activities for a short time each day. Don’t overdo. Newcomers need to interact with their peers. EXPERT IN HIS LANGUAGE Encourage newcomers to share their language skills to their classmates. *Label classroom objects. If the student can write in their native language, they can label some things in the classroom. If they are not literate in their native language, they will recognize the written form of their language and feel proud that it is displayed. *Teach their classmates to pronounce their home language words on the labels. They can also teach basic vocabulary like the colors, greetings and counting. WRITING TIME • If the student is literate, allow for he/she to write in their native language. • Copy letters of the alphabet, their name, your name, classmates. • Students can draw a picture of a story instead of write it. • Students can sequence the pictures of a story instead of writing about it. *Introduce vocabulary using photos/flash cards.(school, animals, food, etc.) Have the student repeat the word, point to the picture as you name it and then write a sentence – “This is a ___.” READING • If you have books available, allow students to read in their native language. • Create a listening center in the class so that your students can read and listen at the same time. READING • All students love to be read to. Read aloud time is a great time for newcomers to hear the English language. It improves listening skills, builds vocabulary and has a positive impact on a student’s attitude toward reading. READING • Meet with the students individually to learn basic concepts like letters, colors, school vocabulary, etc.) Use picture books at first and then move on to books with patterns. TIPS TO REMEMBER Respect newcomer’s silent period. Don’t force newcomers to speak before they are ready. During this time, students are acquiring language by listening and understanding English. Focus on the positive. Don’t dwell on what they can’t do yet. Create frequent opportunities for their success in class. • Most newcomers learn best with a “hands on” approach. Don't expect them to sit and listen for long periods of time when they don’t understand. Use visuals, gestures as much as possible. • Give simple directions. Break complex directions into simple steps. • Where should newcomers sit? Sit the student near to the teacher or with their buddy. Give me a break! • Provide frequent time outs from English periods. If possible, allow the newcomer some time during the day to converse with someone who speaks his native language. He or she may have some questions they need to ask. INSTEAD OF I DON’T KNOW SAY: • May I ask a friend for help? • Can I have some time to think? • Can you come back to me? • Post these responses for all students to use in the classroom. Words of Encouragement “What can I do? I don’t speak their language. I don’t know their culture?” In our fear, you sometimes forget how much you do know about teaching children. You already know the really important things you need to know to work with a student who is acquiring English, because you already know how to teach. You know students learn best when they feel cared for, safe, accepted and when the material taught is presented at a level they can understand. When fear overwhelms both the teacher and student, teachers cannot instruct and students have difficulty learning. The connection is made when you look into a student’s eyes and hold out your hand and heart. You do already know the important things. The MOST important thing to remember!! • SMILE!