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ESL Teachers Present to Staff at WBEC

The ESL teachers at Walter Bickett Elementary (Rosa Carrasquero, Pam White, and Cathy Martinez) planned and presented a staff development to the staff during a November faculty meeting. The topic was “Comprehensible Input”. It was a brief and effective presentation where they demonstrated strategies to increase student engagement for ELLs during the mini lesson. During this ESL lesson six faculty members, including Principal Tom Childers, participated as “students”. Ms. Carrasquero gave two contrasting mini-lessons. Both lessons were presented completely in Spanish in order to give the participants the feeling of learning content in a second language.

The first lesson was just the teacher talking in Spanish without using any resources during her teaching while describing geometric shapes. The “students” had a very difficult time following and were unable to answer questions or talk about the topic.

The second lesson was the same topic and material however, this time Ms. Carrasquero slowed down and clarified her Spanish by pointing and paraphrasing, using visuals on the large screen, asking clarifying questions throughout, repeating and reinforcing content vocabulary, using hands-on manipulatives, and giving students sentence frames to help them talk to each other about the topic. By the end of that lesson the students were able to ‘turn and talk’ to one another in Spanish telling how many sides and angles the geometric shapes had.

ESL teachers then asked the faculty to discuss the differences between the two lessons, what factors made the content more comprehensible for the students in the second lesson, and what they could do differently in their own classrooms to help their ELLs. 

Written by: Pam White, ESL Teacher
Posted: Nov 25, 2014 by Meghan Jarrell

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