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Primary ESOL Online Weekly Update , 20 October 2014

Hi Everyone

I know that term 4 is an extremely busy time of the year for all teachers as you evaluate where students are at, write reports, and deal with many end-of-year events and productions as well as carrying on your regular teaching. Life becomes a real balancing act both in and out of school. So today I am not introducing a new topic but I will allow you a chance to catch up on last week’s guest post and share links to recent posts on all our communities. I will also share a couple of small items of interest.

Coming up in the next couple of weeks I want to spend a couple of weeks thinking a bit more about Home School Partnerships (HSP) and how we can best support and develop them in our schools. We have a guest post from Judith Anthony a Christchurch school teacher who presented at CLESOL on this topic and I will share what I learnt from Judith Epstein’s webinar that I listened to on developing leadership for HSPs.

Are you fairly new to ESOL online?

I want to welcome all our new subscribers to our mailing list! Thanks all of you who are promoting this mailing list to others. Please introduce yourself on this newly createdpadlet page (http://padlet.com/pandjmcq/gef3nemyta2h), and write one thing you would like to get out of joining this community. I hope the padlet page will help us all to get to know each other better. It should also enable me to better meet your needs by writing about the issues and interest that you have. If you are an older member you may also like to do this.

If you would like to start a discussion and forget how to do that- remember to look below my signature on my weekly updates - the email address is there.


Primary ESOL Online Community 

  • Can you help answer Georgina’s question? I have just got a new student in my class who has no English, he is Spanish speaking I was wondering if anyone who haswebsite recommendations, windows 8 apps or anything that I can use to support his learning in my classroom this term thanks in advance. See her letterhere.
  •   I shared a google doc where you can add your recommended books to share with ELLs that capture the experiences of ELLs and Migrants. You can read about it here. I have added one book to start it off but I really need your contributions to make it a document valuable to everyone. Please add the books you use and share the link with others to do likewise.
  • Sign up for the Ready-to-Read webinars

 Oral Language

I hope that you enjoyed reading Dr Jannie van Hees’ guest post last week on Oral Language: To think, shape and convey ideas as it is packed full of . If you have any questions or feedback about this post then please just post them toprimaryesollists.tki.org.nz. It also links to my two oral language posts from last termKey Instructional ideas to support oral language and Oral Language Strategies.

Related to these posts Literacy Online have also had some great posts this week on the topic oral language see Jane Carroll’s Making Connections and read through the related discussion thread. Also her update this week extends this idea further looking at oral language assessment.

 Scaffolding mathematics learning for English language learners

Auckland teachers take note of this great free opportunity -As part of Connected Educator Month, Cogniton Education’s, maths facilitator Vanitha Govini (who also has a Dip TESSOL) is offering a free workshop this week where explicit strategies and effective teacher practice will be explored to support teachers in scaffolding mathematics learning for English language learners. There are still 11 places available but you do need toregister. The workshop will be held on Thursday 23rd October from 4pm -5:30pm at Cognition Education, Ground Floor, Eden 3, 16 Normanby Road, Mt Eden, Auckland.

 Auckland Light the Fire

Also don’t forget the next Light the Fire event in Auckland is coming up soon on Oct 29th. Karl Vasau- Principal of Rowandale Primary School will be reflecting on his leadership journey as a Pasifika leader. You do need to register see the attachment in the link above. The event is on Oct 29th, 4pm at Rowandale Primary School, 73 Rowandale road in Manurewa.

 Other Communities

Secondary ESOL:

·         Electronic resources

·         Juliet Fry posted the PLD newsletter - English Language Learners (ELLs) and Home School Partnerships in particular I think you will enjoy reading the section on, Key messages to support refugee background English language learners.


·         Many writing competition opportunities have been shared.

·         New Journal Surf quick links resource and suggestions for improving it.

·         Spelling assessments

·         Slow reading Clubs

·         David Riley another post in the children’s author series

·         Anne’s literacy update on her reflections on the NZLA conference and great links and ideas.

Secondary Literacy:

·         Guest post from Dr Ian Hunter on How to win the hearts of boys through writing. He shares a very simple, effective 5 sentences strategy.

On the VLN

·         Learning with Digital Technologies for Māori and Pasifika Learners has great post on using Tellagami. Tellagami is a mobile app (ios and Android) that lets you create and share a quick animation. I can see students having a lot of fun with this and lots of applications in our classrooms. If you haven’t already joined this group O highly recommend it.

·         What's on this week's CEM Pasifika buffet menu 20th - 24th Oketopa? In thePasifika Education Plan 2013-2017 group. There are many opportunities to engage and participate in learning discussions around supporting Pasifika learners.

·         CEM Book Group #1: Key Competencies for the Future, with NZCER | has been a very thought inspiring discussion. Take a look at the discussion around wicked problems.  This week the focus of the discussion is on Working with diverse others and ideas.

Equity is no longer about bringing everyone closer to a set standard of success. Educating diverse students is about using diversity as a resource. It's also about educating for diversity - preparing students to work with diverse others and with diverse ideas. How might this be happening, or beginning to happen, in your school? Why don’t you join in the discussion?

 Do have a great week and I hope you take one of the opportunities above to contribute to our community. 


Kind regards