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REL Southwest Hosts English Learners Conference

REL Southwest hosted an all-day conference titled Teaching Academic Content and Literacy to English Learners in Elementary and Middle School in San Antonio, TX, on July 22, 2014. The event drew 88 educators from across Texas and the nation. Participants spent the day engaging with 12 nationally recognized researchers and practitioners as they explored effective strategies for improving English language academic instruction.

Teaching Academic Content and Literacy to English Learners in Elementary and Middle SchoolSessions focused on the four evidence-based recommendations in the new What Works Clearinghouse practice guide, Teaching Academic Content and Literacy to English Learners in Elementary and Middle School.

  • Recommendation 1: Teach a set of academic vocabulary words intensively across several days using a variety of instructional activities
  • Recommendation 2: Integrate oral and written English language instruction into content-area teaching
  • Recommendation 3: Provide regular, structured opportunities to develop written language skills
  • Recommendation 4: Provide small-group instructional intervention to students struggling in areas of literacy and English language development

For each recommendation, the practice guide provides extensive examples of activities that can be used to support students as they build the language and literacy skills needed to succeed academically. Conference sessions examined how to implement the recommendations in policy and practice and included hands-on activities for participants.

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Photo Gallery

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Dr. Vicki Dimock, REL Southwest Director, opens the conference.

 

Dr. Joseph Dimino, Instructional Research Group, guides a hands-on activity.

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From left: Susie Coultress, State Director, Bilingual/ESL/Title III/Migrant, TEA; Dr. Icela Pelayo, State Director, Bilingual Multicultural Education Bureau, NMPED; Lizzette Gonzalez Reynolds, Chief Deputy Commissioner, TEA

 

Conference attendees listen and take notes during a morning session.