Whenever my colleague Alison Simpson and I collaborate in facilitating professional development for ESOL teachers, we always seem to end up discussing our favorite materials, methods, and approaches from “back in the day.” Both of us started teaching adult immigrants in the 1980s, when resources for teaching ESOL were few and far between. But we… Read More Retro, Vintage, Time-Tested
Mujeres Unidas Avenzando, a community-based organization supporting Latina students and their families since 1979, took digital literacy several steps beyond the basics in their First Literacy Lab project “IT Tools Tech Free-Way.” Instructor Bonnie Rivers, whose experience working at a national tech company informed her First Literacy Lab project design, envisioned the class as a simulated… Read More Mujeres Teaches IT Tech Skills in Pilot Class
After attending a Teaching ESOL Through Community Gardening workshop at First Literacy, Gillian Burleson realized that even though she is a self-proclaimed “brown thumb,” the idea of teaching English through gardening was especially appropriate for her program. Gillian coordinates (and teaches in) the adult ESOL program at The Welcome Project, located at the Mystic River Development… Read More From Garden to Garden: Learning English in the Weeds
Using themes is an effective way to design curriculum for English language learners. Organizing instruction around topics of interest to learners allows the teacher to integrate all four language skills—reading, writing, speaking, and listening—in a coherent manner and increases students’ comprehension. Common themes in ESOL curricula include health, work, and family. When themes get… Read More Gardening as a Theme for Teaching ESOL
I’d like to share a free resource with adult ABE/ESOL teachers, one that has inspired me for years: Teachers and Writers Magazine. It’s a publication of the Teachers and Writers Collaborative (TWC). In their own words, “Teachers & Writers Collaborative (T&W) seeks to educate the imagination by offering innovative creative writing programs for students and… Read More Educating the Imagination
First Literacy is delighted to welcome Lenore Balliro as our new Director of Programs. Ms. Balliro has worked with adult basic education teachers and programs across Massachusetts for many years: as an instructor, program director, staff and program developer, and consultant.
We’re kicking off our fall session Fridays at First Literacy professional development events with an exciting approach to teaching ESOL: Visual Storytelling — Using Photography to Teach English Language Learners… Read More Fridays at First Literacy – Visual Storytelling for ESOL
ABCD developed this hands-on project after observing that many of their ESOL students had an interest in and experience with gardening, but did not know what plants grow in Boston and in many cases did not have enough room to garden.
“We experienced this disconnect last summer when we brought our conversation class to City Natives for a tour. The students spent an hour and a half comparing plants in their home countries and here, learning the names of edible, medicinal, and decorative plants, and talking about the gardens that they had at home. They were excited about the topic and this engagement helped them to interact with our tour guide almost entirely in English.” … Read More First Literacy Lab: ABCD’s Summer ESOL Gardening Class
First Literacy held Session 1 of its Professional Development Workshop Smart Practice: Brain-Based ESOL Instructional Techniques Friday, February 26th in its new professional development room. A 100% attendance of 23 participants made for a lively room of engaged adult education educators – teachers and administrators alike. As a foundation for this two-part, six-hour workshop,… Read More Brain-Based ESOL Instruction