The school year started off with our English as a Second Language (ESL) staff attending the Fall 2008 Title III Administrative Workshop where they learned about administering the LAS Links Placement test (a test used with new ESL students to our corporation and ESL kindergarten students to find out what their level of English proficiency is). In October, ESL staff and a number of teachers attended a training session staged by the Indiana Department of Education on Indiana's English Language Proficiency Standards. The meetings were very informative and helpful.
Syracuse Elementary School's ESL students invited the third grade students to attend and enjoy an educational program on “Bats.” The presentation was very interesting, and the children were able to observe several taxidermied bats. In addition, the students even had the opportunity to hear a recording of a bat using echolocation to find its food!
This fall we held our first Reading is Fun (RIF) book distribution meeting at Milford Elementary School. Our theme this year was “Family Science Night.” There were over 100 parents and students in attendance. Students and parents were able to observe and/or participate in various science demonstrations. The students' involvement with the experiments and distribution of books helped encourage the families to attend. Great job everyone!
At the North Webster Elementary School, we are working on reading, math and a “Word Tower.” Any new vocabulary words acquired by the student are pasted onto a paper and placed on the wall. We hope to fill all the walls with new words by the end of the school year!!!
Middle school students have engaged in reading poetry and writing in language arts. Students have also rehearsed speeches on various topics. The students researched the topics, created a list of questions and facts, then put together their speech. We worked on intonation, facial expressions, and delivering the speech with credibility. Other subjects we work on include science and social Studies, as time allows.
The high school students have been working hard on English, math, history and Chem/Phys, making new friends, and participating in researching topics in the classroom, when their school work is complete. In particular, they have researched successful and prominent multicultural individuals who have contributed in one way or another to the arts, music, science, politics, etc. The goal is to help students envision their own dreams and to pursue them.
On behalf of the ESL Department, have a safe holiday, and may the true beauty of the season fill your hearts with peace, joy and laughter.
- Maria Waltz, Director of ESL Programs
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