This week we have a special guest blogger, EL Resource Teacher Mrs. Pemberton!
She has some wonderful information to share about the rich cultures and languages at our school:
We have such a wonderful, diverse student population here at Dryden.
It is such a privilege to work with students from such rich backgrounds and cultures.
At Dryden, our EL families make up about 15% of our student population.
Enrolled in the EL program, we have families with backgrounds from all over the world
spanning across seventeen different languages including:
We really value culture and bilingualism here at Dryden. In the EL Classroom, we have our mantra
posted on the wall that reads, “Bilingualism is a gift.” At the beginning of the year, we discuss the
significance of this statement and we share about our own traditions and languages.
This carries over from the EL classroom to the general education classrooms.
Specialists at Dryden work very closely together.
At Dryden, we have a large Polish population, and we give transitional bilingual support to our
Polish-speaking students through our resource teacher. Our program model involves pull-out support
and push-in support as well as one multiage sheltered classroom for grades 1-2.
The multiage sheltered classroom has a partner, or “buddy”, classroom that works very closely with
students in that class for different subjects to integrate native English speaking peers with
English language learners. This program has shown great growth and success of all learners.
This month, our EL students will be taking the annual language proficiency test entitled the
ACCESS test. This test is based off the WIDA framework (https://www.wida.us/) around the
English Language Development Standards adopted by the state of Illinois.
This test measures language proficiency in four language domains including
listening, speaking, reading, and writing in English. Scores from this test are used to make
instructional decisions for our English language learners.
This year, the testing window at Dryden will be January 23rd through February 9th.
If you have any questions about the EL program, please contact the following staff members:
Julia Pemberton - EL Resource Teacher - firstname.lastname@example.org
Susan Hernandez - Multiage Sheltered Teacher Grades ½ - email@example.com