Watch: English-Learners and Common Core in the Classroom

By Lesli A. Maxwell — July 31, 2013 1 min read
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Teachers in Albuquerque, N. M., worked over many months last year to create model lessons for the new common standards in English/language arts at three different grade levels that would be rigorous and accessible to the large number of English-learners in their classrooms.

And now, their hard work is being shared with everyone as part of a rich new resource on the bilingual Colorín Colorado website.

I wrote about those teachers and the work they were doing as part of a larger story on systemwide efforts in Albuquerque to roll out the new standards and ensure that the district’s large number of English-learners would not be left to languish under the more demanding requirements of the common core. The project was supported by a grant from the American Federation of Teachers Innovation Fund.

Now, anyone can see the full lesson plans those teachers created, videos of them teaching in the classroom, and interviews of them talking about how it worked.

But that’s just one chunk of what the new common-core-and-ELLs resource site is offering. There is information for English-as-a-second-language teachers who might be trying to figure out what their role in supporting students and content teachers should be in the common-core era. The site, which is intended as much for parents as for educators, also has a section (in English and in Spanish) to help explain the common core to families with English-learner children.

The AFT Innovation Fund just announced last week that it will support a second teacher-led common-core project in Poughkeepsie, N.Y., where the ELL population is growing. This effort will focus on developing lessons and instructional strategies for middle and high school English-learners. Eventually, the lessons they develop and teach in their classrooms will also be made available on the Colorín Colorado site.

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A version of this news article first appeared in the Learning the Language blog.