Part I: Read the following scenario:
Maria, a teen, and her family just moved to Florida from Venezuela. Her mother’s family lives here, and there is a job for her father. They have moved here to make a better life for their family. The entire family speaks Spanish at home. Maria’s grandmother and mother do not speak and English, but her father knows a small amount. They arrived yesterday in Florida, and this morning Maria was enrolled in public school. The only English words Maria knows are “hi” and “thank you.”
Maria is given a schedule of 7 classes that meet for 45 minutes each. She is placed in an ESL Reading class, in addition to English Language Arts (ELA), Math, Science, Social Studies, Theater, and Gym. She is assigned a buddy by the school. Her buddy is an English only speaking student. He shows her where each classroom is at the appropriate time. Maria has a phone, but no other school supplies. The school policy is that cell phones are off and away during classes.
You are teaching at the public school where Maria has enrolled. You have 6 classes. Class 1 has 29 students, including 7 ESL students that speak various languages at various levels of English proficiency and 5 ESE students. Classes 2,3,4 have 24-28 students in them, with no ESL students or ESE students. Class 5 has 19 students, and 10 of them are ESE students. And class 6 has 23 students with 6 ESE students.
There are 3 different ESE teachers that “push in” to the 3 classes with ESE students. They are in class with you for 10-15 minutes of the class period. For planning time, you have one 45 minute planning period during the day, 15 minutes before school starts, and 10 minutes after school starts. Although there is an ESL paraprofessional at your school, there is no ESL support for your course
You have no Spanish materials in your classroom. None of the technology products provided by the school district are in Spanish. Although you have taught for a few years, this is your first year teaching this subject. It’s February, and you started in this position at this school in January.
Part 2: Write a POST
In your post, give some ideas about how you could help Maria acquire language, be successful in your course and classroom, and how you might grade her work. In the scenario above, I intentionally left out what grade Maria is in (although you know she is a teen) and a subject area (although you know her 7 classes) to give you some flexibility in your post. These ideas could be teaching strategies, activities, games, technology, class instruction, assessments, group work, etc. So it’s really open. This is not an “out there” scenario – it could easily happen in your classroom. It did to me – it’s a true story.
Some of you are in the classroom (although in various grades), some of you are working at a school but not in a teacher role, and some of you have not yet started teaching. This discussion is a way to share ideas about what you might do if this scenario (or something similar) happened to you. So even if you are still a students or working in a school but in a non-teaching role, think about what you might do.)
Your post should be a minimum of 8 sentences. Please don’t repeat what a classmate has posted. For example, if a classmate posts about using Google Translate with Maria and gives some ideas for that – don’t also post about using Google Translate. Duplicates will not receive credit.
If you use ideas from the text or online, please provide links and/or citations.