Andrew Rose in an ELL Instructional Facilitator in the OKCPS district with a background as a high school World History and English teacher. He works with teachers in specific schools through professional development and in Professional Learning Communities on ways to support English Language Learners.
For my interview with Andrew, we spoke specifically about Newcomers. Newcomers are English Language Learners (ELL) who have recently arrived to the United States. They may be in Kindergarten or 10th grade. The focus on teaching Newcomers has become an education hot topic – so much so the US government has created a resource for teachers to guide them through meeting the needs of students who fall into this category. Check it out here – Newcomers Toolkit.
Below are the questions I prepared to ask Andrew (there were some follow up questions in the podcast that are not included below):
- Share about your background/experience in education.
- Explain the work you do for OKCPS.
- When are students considered a newcomer and what does that term mean?
- What is the difference between the classification of a newcomer and the umbrella category of English language learning student?
- Why is it important for teachers to understand this difference? Should it impact the teaching strategies that they use?
- What are the main obstacles teachers come across when teaching students considered to be newcomers?
- What are the main struggles for students who are considered newcomers?
- What interventions are most effective for teachers to use when working with students considered to be newcomers?
- What recommendations do you have for teachers working with parents of newcomers?
- What are some resources that you direct teachers to?
- What other advice do you have for teachers?