Elementary School – EAL Program

The Sheltered Immersion Model (SIM)

The Elementary School offers the EAL program through the Sheltered Immersion Model (SIM).  In SIM, children acquire English through participation in regular grade-level programs alongside other English proficient children.  They are ‘sheltered’ through supports offered by their teachers and through specialized EAL classes.

For the ‘pull-out’ or specialized EAL classes, there are two basic groupings of English proficiency levels, based on the results of the WIDA assessment and the child interview.  We have put the Entering and Emerging Proficiency levels into the Beginning English proficiency level.  The students who tested with a Developing proficiency level are then grouped together in the Intermediate English proficiency level.  Typically, the Intermediate English group have already been in the EAL program for at least a year.

If your child is at the Beginning English proficiency level, he/she is placed with a small group of students from the same grade level learning at the beginner’s stage.  These groups usually meet during the literacy (reading and writing) blocks on the schedule.  Examples of EAL activities for the Beginners include:

  • Interactive listening and speaking activities/games
  • Early reading and writing activities
  • Vocabulary building exercises
  • Word study (looking at the sounds of the English language)
  • Support with tasks from your child’s grade level classes

These students also receive EAL services during the rotation block (2 x 50 minute blocks a cycle) and during ‘push-in’ time (when the EAL Specialist teacher is in the classroom) in the afternoon.

If your child is at the Intermediate English proficiency level, he/she will receive direct EAL services during the rotation block (2 x 50 minute blocks a cycle) and during ‘push-in’ time in the afternoon, during the PYP time.  Examples of EAL activities for the Intermediates include:

  • Word study (looking at the sounds of the English language)
  • Shared reading and writing activities
  • Interactive on-line stories using the Smartboard
  • Vocabulary building exercises
  • Support with tasks from your child’s grade-level class

Assessment: The WIDA

Students are assessed at the beginning of the school year and during the end of the second semester.  The formal language assessment used by the school is the WIDA (World-Class Instructional Design and Assessment).  Based on these results, your child will be at one of 6 proficiency levels.  At the given level of English language proficiency, English language learners will process, understand, produce and use:

(1) Entering –  pictorial or graphic representation of the language of the content areas; words, phrases, or chunks of language when presented with one-step commands, directions, WH-questions, yes/no questions, or statements with graphic, sensory of interactive support; oral language with phonological, syntactic or semantic errors

(2) Emerging – general language related to the content areas; phrases or short sentences; oral or written language with phonological, syntactic or semantic errors

(3) Developing – general or specific language of the content areas; expanded sentences in oral interaction or written paragraphs; oral or written language with phonological, syntactic or semantic errors

(4) Expanding – specific and some technical language of the content areas; a variety of sentence lengths of varying linguistic complexity in oral discourse or multiple, related sentences, or paragraphs; oral or written language with minimal phonological, syntactic or semantic errors

(5) Bridging – specialized or technical language of the content areas; a variety of sentence lengths of varying linguistic complexity in extended oral or written discourse, including stories, essays or reports; oral or written language approaching comparability to that of English-proficient peers when presented with grade-level material

(6) Reaching – specialized or technical language of the content areas at grade level; a variety of sentence lengths of varying linguistic complexity in extended oral or written discourse as required by the specified grade level; oral or written communication in English comparable to English-proficient peers

AISB EAL Language Continuum Grades 1-5

In accordance to the proficiency levels, we at AISB developed a English language continuum, in two grade-level groupings (1-2 and 3-5) that explains what students at each level can do in each domain (listening, speaking, reading and writing).  It is supposed to be read vertically and not horizontally, although you will see some progression in certain areas.  If you have any questions about where your child is on the continuum, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us in the EAL department at AISB.

EAL Language Continuum Grades 1-2

EAL Language Continuum Grades 3-5

Connor McGovern Jersey