SDAIE Strategies:

SDAIE Strategies:
SDAIE (Specifically Designed Academic Instruction in English)
emphasize the concept of ‘comprehensible input’. They can be
used throughout the curriculum.
1.Tapping into Prior Knowledge: Focuses the students’ attention,
develops readiness for instruction, motivates, and relates to previous
learning (ESL students have the opportunity to adjust to the new
learning and relate it to their own life experiences making it much
more comprehensible and valuable)
*Anticipatory Chart(KWL)- Record “What students already know” ,
“What they want to know”, and “What they learned”
*Carousel Brainstorming-Each small group has a title related to the
topic and uses a specific color marker to write 4-5 ideas-they rotate
the posters reading them and adding to them-discuss results
*Visualization-Give a teacher prompt, students visualize a
particular time, place, etc and concentrate on sensory images
*Integrating subjects (Themes)-having a common theme
throughout the curriculum so that as subjects change, students can
utilize prior knowledge and have some uniformity in their learning
-Of course there are many more-including ‘read-alouds’-please feel
free to share some with me
2. Cooperative Learning-provides positive social interaction for ELL
students helping them perceive the classroom as a comfortable,
friendly place where they feel safe using their new language skills;
they may find intrinsic motivation for communication in English-Robert
Marzano explains, in his book, Classroom Instruction that Works,
there are five defining elements of cooperative learning: 1.
Positive interdependence 2. Face to face promotive interaction 3.
Individual and group accountablitiy 4. Interpersonal and small group
skills 5. Group processing
I encourage you to read more about cooperative learning in chapter 7
of Marzano’s work. Additionally, the following websites have some
wonderful cooperative learning ideas that can be incorporated into
the classroom.
- and type “cooperative learning” in their
search engine
3. Nonlinguistic Representations: Written and oral words often
need situational and contextual help in order to be understood.
Marzano discusses in his work, Classroom Instruction That Works,
that knowledge is stored in two forms ‘linguistic form’ and ‘imagery
form (nonlinguistic)’. He discusses, in chapter 6, that the more both
forms are used, the better students are able to think about and recall
knowledge. The ‘imagery form’ is crucial to making content
comprehensible to ELL students. Below, are some ideas of how to
incorporate nonlinguistic representations into the curriculum:
Demonstrate; use manipulatives: Whenever possible, accompany
your message with gestures, pictures and objects that help get the
meaning across. Use a variety of different pictures or objects for the
same idea. MODEL, MODEL, MODEL
Focus on vocabulary: Pre-teach vocabulary and concepts; use
realia, demonstrations, visuals, and multiple modalities when
teaching. Illustrate, label, explain multiple meaning words.
Graphic Organizers: Marzano has some great ideas in regards to
using graphic organizers. Beginning English speakers can create
graphic organizers using only pictures while intermediate and
advanced ELL students can combine pictures with words and/or
4. Reduction of Teacher Talk –this strategy can be, and usually is,
interpreted in two different ways:
1.The teacher tries to incorporate the students and the use of
their oral language in the lesson as much as possible-the students
can volunteer and share information on the concept/subject,
cooperative groups/think-pair share, just utilizing ways the students
can be part of the lesson so as to reduce the teacher language that
ELL students can not always follow due to the unknown vocabulary.
Providing the information at the teacher level and at the student
level allows for the information to be more comprehensible to
the ELL students.
2. Another way this is interpreted is that the teacher presents
what is really “ESSENTIAL” in the lesson. What vocabulary is
necessary to introduce in order for them to understand the concept
being taught? This allows for extraneous information to be removed
and shared at a later time when students have grasped the basic
concepts and are ready for extensions. (Please do not think that I am
saying “dumb down” or “water down” the information, which is
sometimes how theis strategy is misconstrued) It simply means to
pull out the essentials and also try to use some of the other
“nonlinguistic representations” discussed in the past purple
paper. Remember –“a picture can tell a 1000 words”
5. Multicultural Education- promoting and utilizing each student’s
individuality and culture into their educational environment-incorporated into the classroom on a daily basis by embracing
similarities and differences in your students, utilizing their
backgrounds into your instruction, and enabling them to be
learners of other cultures and teachers of their own. I am not
speaking of times when certain rituals or foods are shared one day a
year from a different culture--an everyday, ongoing strategy---a
student’s cultural background viewed as positive and essential
in developing classroom instruction and a welcoming school
environment—It is important to see students as individuals whose
school behavior is influenced by family, community, and ethnocultural groups of which they are a part-- In order to treat each
student respectfully as individuals and expect students to treat each
other respectfully, we must learn about the relevant social and
cultural groups in their lives. Growing up in a community whose
schools populations were 12-15% white and a completely diverse
85%, it was very empowering to have the teacher incorporate small
pieces of who we all were and allow us to share a. piece of ourselves.
The community feeling is one that is important to create for ELL
Learners (reduces anxiety—lowers the affective filter).
Activities: Culture Bag: students bring from home a few items that
represent who they are as a person; students learn about others--teachers learn about students Similarities and Differences: When
comparing other cultures or people; be sure to emphasize wonderful
similarities--Multicultural Literature-Excellent web
Visual/Oral Representations: Students can share, through visual
representation or oral, what a certain concept means to them or what
background knowledge they have—
SDAIE=Multicultural Education
Basically---Remember who your audience is when teaching--6. Check for Understanding: This seems basic and you are
probably already doing it and that’s great. This allows ELL students
to have time to process what the teacher has said, hear it from
their peers, and show understanding in a non-verbal way. It also
shows the teacher the students’ level of understanding and,
therefore, possible re-teaching ideas. If they understand, they will
be successful at the task building self confidence.
Ideas: (Ask them questions before asking the famous question “do
you have any questions” which typically few students respond to,
especially ELL students)
-Ask ‘yes’ and ‘no’ questions, ‘thumbs up’ or ‘thumbs down’, ‘true’ or
false’, or supply multiple choice answers
-Have them point to, respond by doing something/acting out, or
drawing something
-Give them a sentence they have to complete
-Let the students retell a lesson/activity in their own words
-‘Think-Pair-Share’ the activity or lessons components
-Ask the students to order what they will do practicing transition
words, “first, next, after, last”, “first, second, third”, etc.
-Trick them, throw in funny questions, make ‘checking for
understanding’ a game.
Remember: before even checking for understanding “Model,
Model, Model”
7.Manipulatives-Hands on Experiences-ELL students need the
tactile-kinesthetic experiences with physical objects, experiences that
are fundamental in linking words with the objects/pictures. Students
can visually and physically manipulate objects that are directly linked
with the concepts being taught. This allows them to understand the
concept in a way that is more accessible and understandable than
with words. Additionally, as Marzano states in his work, Classroom
Instruction that Works, “using manipulatives generates a concrete
representation, an ‘image’ of the knowledge in students’ minds”. The
teacher, therefore, is aware of what the student understands without
them expressing it in words. It is important to allow them to use the
manipulatives until they are ready to give them up. By doing that, you
are allowing them to fully understand the concept and then break
away from the manipulatives when they can understand it
All subjects can entail manipulatives:
-math (foundational to understanding numbers), science, language
arts (cut and organize ideas in words strips, use different tactile
experiences to introduce vocab/spelling words/concepts, tableau,
-drawings, posters, brainstorming-clusters, graphs, tables, maps,
props, multimedia presentations, storyboards, storymaps
Please share some ideas with me