[Assessment 1212] Re: {Dangerous Content?} RE: No Questions orComments?!

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Forrest Chisman forrest at crosslink.net
Fri Feb 8 17:24:36 EST 2008


Miriam,



I love this! I would never have thought of it. And I love stuff I would
never have thought of!



Forrest



From: assessment-bounces at nifl.gov [mailto:assessment-bounces at nifl.gov] On
Behalf Of Miriam Burt
Sent: Friday, February 08, 2008 3:04 PM
To: The Assessment Discussion List
Subject: [Assessment 1199] Re: {Dangerous Content?} RE: No Questions
orComments?!



Noa and others,



I like the idea of the snack bar very much, but I'm curious about how the
concept of buying and wearing second hand clothing from strangers, if you
will, is received by the students. My experience is that the idea purchasing
and wearing someone else's second-hand clothes and items is actually one
that doesn't always translate across all cultures. True, the idea is highly
positive among middle class here in the U.S. where it is seen as a way of
saving money, being "green," and not wasting resources -- and this is
demonstsrated by the prolitferation of trendy 2nd hand boutiques in cities
and ads on Craig's list to sell gently used baby clothes (even diapers! )
and toys. However, some cultural groups may find the idea of buying and
wearing someone else's clothing as "charity" (as Jodi says below) or
something somewhat distasteful. Perhaps the fact that all items are 50
cents takes that edge off? Has anyone else had this experience with the
concept of 2nd hand items and other cultures?



Great discussion here!

Miriam

**********

Center for Adult English Language Acquisition

Center for Applied Linguistics

4646 40th Street NW

Washington, DC 20016

(202) 362-0700

(202) 363-7204 (fax)

<mailto:mburt at cal.org> mburt at cal.org (email)



_____

From: assessment-bounces at nifl.gov [mailto:assessment-bounces at nifl.gov] On
Behalf Of Jodi Crandall
Sent: Friday, February 08, 2008 1:18 PM
To: The Assessment Discussion List
Subject: [Assessment 1192] Re: {Dangerous Content?} RE: No Questions
orComments?!
Importance: Low

Noa,



These are fabulous ideas. I especially like the emphasis on how literacy
level students can help those who are more educated and also cooperate and
compete with them in the snack bar and boutique.



You have provided clear guidance on how to maximize both groups' strengths
and also encourage them to learn from each other.



By the way, "boutique" is so much more positive a name than the usual
"closet" or another name that sounds like it's charity.



Do others have suggestions of ways of accommodating literacy level and more
educated students in the same class.



Jodi



On Feb 8, 2008, at 11:59 AM, Sadan, Noa wrote:





Jodi,



The classroom mix of the highly educated literate students who didn't know
English with the literacy level beginning English students was often a
challenge. The first (unstated) task was to help the educated students
realize that they might learn a great deal from those who picked up oral
language faster than they did.



Techniques for dealing with the mixed levels:

The Key: fostering a sense of community within the class

Main technique: Group work - teacher as enabler, moving around the
groups

* extra reading help in reading given while class was working
on either written assignments or group projects
* groups were mixed

* always by language
* occasionally by gender
* rarely by ability (only when reading lessons
specifically for the literacy group were held)

School Job: The Refugee Center has a working Snack Bar, and Boutique
(donated clothing - everything sells for fifty cents/item).

* students polish their abilty to work together
* students learn chain of command (literacy level students are
supervisors just as often as the highly educated, since they often have a
verbal advantage)
* literacy-level students could make coffee, serve as a
cashier, and give excellent customer service
* a highly educated accountant who cannot get out an English
sentence orally, could create a cost-accounting spreadsheet see if it was
less expensive to buy bulk sugar or packets for coffee.

Other projects are used as well - making recipe books, making student
profile books. Today, with the use of the computer, the possibilities are
endless for activities for mixed classes.



Noa



_____

From: assessment-bounces at nifl.gov [mailto:assessment-bounces at nifl.gov] On
Behalf Of Jodi Crandall
Sent: Thursday, February 07, 2008 12:59 PM
To: The Assessment Discussion List
Subject: [Assessment 1152] Re: {Dangerous Content?} RE: No Questions
orComments?!

Noa,



Thanks for sharing this. How wonderful to have had 20 hours per week for
these students. Besides mutual respect (which is very important), were
there ways in which students could use their complementary skills to help
each other. If you could describe some of the activities that you or others
used that were helpful, that would be great.



If others of you could share your experiences with mixed classes, and how
you coped with them, I think a lot of us would be interested.



The change to separate Listening, Reading and "Homeroom" classes is also a
very interesting way of meeting the needs of this diverse population. I
know that many community colleges separate their instruction in adult ESL to
oral language skills (Listening/Speaking) and written language
(Reading/Writing) skills. Are there others out there who could share your
experiences in this regard?



The presence of World English speakers and Generation 1.5 speakers in adult
ESL has further complicated the situation. I'd be interested in knowing how
others have dealt with such diverse students in adult ESL/ESOL.



Jodi







n Feb 7, 2008, at 12:16 PM, Sadan, Noa wrote:





Years ago, the Montgomery County Refugee Training Program (Montgomery

College, Silver Spring, MD)had highly educated people with no English,

in class with literacy level students. It was certainly difficult

meeting the needs of all students, but in this intensive 20-hours/week

program, a tremendous mutual respect was fostered between the groups.

Typically, the highly educated students raced ahead with reading and

writing, while the literacy students sped ahead with oral language. The

Somali mother of nine would say to the Russian engineer, "I wish I could

read and write like you!", while the Russian woman would reply, "I wish

I could speak like you."



All this ended with a slightly different solution. The Refugee Center,

then under the direction of Donna Kinerney, divided that school day into

separate Listening,Reading and "Homeroom" classes. Homerooom took in all

skills, plus the introduction to the American workplace. This model was

in place when we began to get World English speakers who were not

literate. It provided a solution in which they could study in a

literacy-level reading/writing class, and interact in a higher level

Listening and Homeroom class.



-----Original Message-----

From: assessment-bounces at nifl.gov [mailto:assessment-bounces at nifl.gov]

On Behalf Of JoAnn (Jodi) Crandall

Sent: Wednesday, February 06, 2008 3:10 PM

To: The Assessment Discussion List

Subject: [Assessment 1139] Re: {Dangerous Content?} RE: No Questions or

Comments?!



Jackie and Forrest,



I think most large programs separate literacy level students from others

who are at a beginning level. I know that back in the 1980s when there

were large refugee ESL programs, several community colleges created

parallel ESL classes for the beginning levels and even into intermediate

levels, with one set of classes for students with limited literacy or

prior schooling and another for more educated students. The reason was

that the students with less education made slower progress. Some of

this is undoubtedly due to the way in which we teach English (requiring

literacy), but it is also because students need to become accustomed to

attending classes, learning to hold and use a pen or pencil, and a wide

range of basic skills that come with being a student in a class.



Those of you who have separate classes for those who need literacy:

Can

you tell us what kind of classes or program you provide?



Those who teach both literacy and more educated learners in the same

class: Can you let us know how you manage? What are some ways in which

you accommodate both sets of needs?



Jodi

Forrest,

I like the idea of separate classes for those with a literacy

background and those without. These two groups have such different

needs. Having both in the class make it difficult for a teacher to

meet the needs of either group well and I find that often the stronger



students dominate the class, and their drive push the teacher forward.



If the instructor does not keep up with the students who are learning

at a faster rate, they often become frustrated and leave or mentally

check out. However, if the instructor keeps up with those students,

the others are unable to keep up and they get frustrated.

I think that literacy could perhaps be separated out. And regardless



of how you do it, well-trained instructors are essential.

Jackie





On 2/5/08, Forrest Chisman <forrest at crosslink.net> wrote:



To all of you who commented on level of prior education as a factor

in student performance:







Everyone with whom Jodi Crandall and I talked believes that more

highly educated students do better in terms of persistence, learning



gains, and transitions. And learning theory would lead us to expect

this.

Regrettably

we found very little hard data about how much difference prior

education makes, because too few programs track the level of prior

education of their students and correlate it with outcomes. DO any of



you do this? That is, do you have any data on HOW MUCH difference

level of prior education makes?

Or

any strong impressions? And are there "cut points" in prior education



that seem to make a difference -- e.g. students who are completely

illiterate, students who at least reached high school, high school

graduates, college graduates, etc. -- or is level of prior education



pretty much of a continuum?







More importantly, what can programs DO to narrow the gap between

highly educated students and those with less prior education?

Presumably students with very low levels of education are more likely



end up in the lower level ESL courses (Literacy or Low-Beginning

levels) why are (almost by

definition) in the business of teaching basic literacy and sometimes



math.

Why isn't this enough? In your experience, does the "gap" exist at

these levels too, or mainly at higher levels? At any levels, would it



be desirable to place less highly educated students in separate

classes from those with more education and adjust the

curriculum/support systems for them accordingly? Some programs have

tried "native language literacy" or the Spanish GED. What has been

the experience of any of you with these approaches? Any other ideas?

IS there an adult ESL equivalent of "bi-lingual education" that

should be tried?







It seems to me that we need to come up with better ideas. Because the



people who study immigration tell us that the level of education of

immigrants has been falling. And if Immigration Reform mandates large



numbers of undocumented people to "learn English" (whatever that

means), ESL programs may be swamped with students who have very

little education in their native countries and too little money to

serve them. So anyone who has any ideas about how to bridge this

"education gap" could help us a lot by posting ideas about how to

close it on this discussion list.







Forrest Chisman



Vice President



CAAL















*From:* assessment-bounces at nifl.gov

[mailto:assessment-bounces at nifl.gov]

*On

Behalf Of *Tina_Luffman at yc.edu

*Sent:* Tuesday, February 05, 2008 1:32 PM

*To:* The Assessment Discussion List

*Subject:* [Assessment 1109] Re: {Dangerous Content?} RE: No

Questions or Comments?!









Hi Jackie,



Thank you for this information. I believe this research must be what

my former Spanish teacher was basing her argument on for bilingual

education in the K-12 school system.



Tina



Tina Luffman

Coordinator, Developmental Education

Verde Valley Campus

928-634-6544

tina_luffman at yc.edu



*"Jackie Coelho" <jackie.coelho at gmail.com>* Sent by:

assessment-bounces at nifl.gov



02/05/2008 11:13 AM



Please respond to

The Assessment Discussion List <assessment at nifl.gov>



To



"The Assessment Discussion List" <assessment at nifl.gov>



cc



Subject



[Assessment 1108] Re: {Dangerous Content?} RE: No Questions or

Comments?!













Hi Tina,



This has been researched already and is the basis for the arguement

in favor of bilingual education, a good idea that was not implemented



in the best way. For many years people have known that a good

foundation in literacy in the first language will facilitate learning



in a second or third language.



Another interesting twist is the existence of languages that are not

written.



Jackie





On 2/5/08, Tina_Luffman at yc.edu <Tina_Luffman at yc.edu> wrote:

Hi list members,



My experience teaching ELAA students in the GED class is similar to

that

of

Gail. If the student has a solid educational background in the

country

they

came from in their native language, they tend to advance rather

quickly

and

get their GED. Those coming with 6th grade educations from their

country

or

lower tend to stay in the GED class for years and do not make much

advancement.



This experience relates well to research done among Native American

tribes

teaching them English. Those Native Americans who were first taught

literacy

skills in their own tongue learned English much quicker than those

who

tried

to learn literacy skills in English without that background in

their

own

tongue. I also found similar problems when I was learning Spanish.

The concepts I could mentally translate from English to Spanish

were much

easier

to grasp and learn than those I didn't know in English. Perhaps

this

is

something deserving more research.



Tina

Tina Luffman

Coordinator, Developmental Education Verde Valley Campus

928-634-6544

tina_luffman at yc.edu



-----assessment-bounces at nifl.gov wrote: -----



To: "The Assessment Discussion List" <assessment at nifl.gov>

From: "Gail Burnett" <gburnett at sanford.org> Sent by:

assessment-bounces at nifl.gov

Date: 02/04/2008 06:34PM

Subject: [Assessment 1104] {Dangerous Content?} RE: No Questions or



Comments?!





Warning: This message has had one or more attachments removed

Warning: (not named).

Warning: Please read the "AttachmentWarning.txt" attachment(s) for

more

information.



In our small adult education program, my experience (just about

three

years)

is that students with solid educational backgrounds advance,

particularly if

they're not working too many hours. Those who advance the slowest,

if

at

all, are immigrants who are barely literate in their first

language. I

would

say that lack of education is a bigger factor than lack of time; a

student

who works full-time and is exhausted often will still succeed

because

he/she

is familiar with academic work, and is goal-oriented. What we do is

try

to

get our low-level students to come up with goals, but that's a hard

concept

in a second language.



This does not mean that the factors mentioned in the research don't

play

a

part, though. I'm one of those barely-trained teachers

(transitioned

from

another career, got trained mainly through workshops rather than

classes).

My skill level very well may contribute to students' slow

advancement.

It's

hard for small adult education programs to get highly skilled ESL

teachers.

The pay is low and there are no benefits. But my program is

encouraging

me

to get extra training and has me on a plan of improvement. I think

we're

making some progress.



Does this address any of the issues? And am I submitting it right?



________________________________



From: assessment-bounces at nifl.gov on behalf of Marie Cora

Sent: Mon 2/4/2008 6:50 PM

To: Assessment at nifl.gov

Subject: [Assessment 1103] No Questions or Comments?!





Hello everyone,



I'm so surprised! No one has anything to comment on regarding your



program's effectiveness at helping ESL students advance?? I was

very curious to know if subscribers experience the same types of

issues

that

Dr.

Chisman and Dr. Crandall found in their research: a lack of

intensity

of

instruction/few protocols for transitioning students/few

opportunities

for

professional development.



What are the issues in your program that you feel inhibit the ESL

student

from advancing? What do you try to do about that?



Please post your questions and comments now.



Thanks!



Marie Cora

Assessment Discussion List Moderator





Marie Cora

marie.cora at hotspurpartners.com

<mailto:marie.cora at hotspurpartners.com>

NIFL Assessment Discussion List Moderator

<marie.cora at hotspurpartners.com>

http://www.nifl.gov/mailman/listinfo/assessment





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--

JoAnn (Jodi) Crandall

Professor, Education Department

Director, Ph.D. Program in Language, Literacy & Culture Coordinator,

Peace Corps Master's International Program in ESOL/Bilingual Education

University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC) 1000 Hilltop Circle,

Baltimore, MD 21250

ph: 410-455-2313/2376 fax: 410-455-8947/1880

email: crandall at umbc.edu

www.umbc.edu/llc/

www.umbc.edu/esol/

www.umbc.edu/esol/peacecorps.html







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JoAnn (Jodi) Crandall

Professor and Director

Language, Literacy and Culture Ph.D. Program

Director, Peace Corps Master's Intl Program in ESOL/Bilingual Education

University of Maryland Baltimore County

1000 Hilltop Circle

Baltimore, MD 21250

tel: 410-455-2313

fax: 410-455-8947

eml: crandall at umbc.edu











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