Boonville Elementary

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Message for Teachers with Newcomers

 For Teachers of Newcomers:

It can be overwhelming to have students in your classroom who speak little to no English. Be careful not to put too much pressure on yourself or your new student(s). Acquiring a new language, especially academic language, can take 5-7 years. The process is different for each individual. Language acquisition can be a painfully slow process, especially for students who may have come from less than ideal situations in other countries.

Keep in mind that your student is adjusting to a new country and to new people in addition to learning a new language. My best advice is to engage with your newcomer and include your newcomer in class activities as much as possible. There are some great computer programs available, but none of those can compete with the benefits of interaction with English-speaking teachers and classmates!

Thank you for all that you are doing to help our newcomers adjust and learn. Please use this website as a resource and contact me with any questions you have or resources you need!


I found this great quote online! It will help us as teachers to keep in mind... "Learners of English carry a triple burden. They must master the learning of language, the language of learning, as well as cultural and extra-linguistic challenges, in addition to content/subject matter."


Quick tip from : Your ELLs may interact well with classmates but be floundering academically. BICS (Basic Interpersonal Communication skills) may be learned quickly. However, CALP (Cognitive Academic Language Proficiencies) may take 5 to 10 years to acquire. If your students are unable to understand your language arts or social studies lessons, they have acquired BIC skills but lack CALP.