Most of us recall the first time we had English Language Learners (ELLs) in our classrooms. What does this child understand? How do I help her feel comfortable when I can’t communicate in the same language? How do I teach academic subjects and monitor progress when he doesn’t speak the language of instruction? How will her peers act toward her? These concerns are often coupled with a fear that spending valuable instructional time helping the ELLs may cause us to neglect the bulk of our class who are not ELLs.
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