|Elementary Literacy :||Oral Language|
Considerations for ELLs
Oral language provides the foundation for literacy development. English language learners (ELLs) need daily opportunities to learn and practice oral English in order for their literacy skills to flourish. ELLs learn English primarily by listening to language in use around them, while using context to figure out what the spoken words mean. This language serves as the input or data that learners internalize and use to express their own meanings in their interactions with others.
It is important to consider that many ELLs go through a "silent period," during which they listen and observe more than they speak. ELLs may speak at first in single words or short phrases. They may speak fluently when using greetings and other basic phrases in routine interpersonal situations, but speak haltingly when constructing English sentences to express more complex ideas. Effective teachers are aware that ELLs who are quiet in class may be hard at work listening and comprehending. Teachers also know that ELLs may take longer to answer a question or volunteer a comment, because they need more time to process meaning and formulate an appropriate response.
ELLs' speech may be ungrammatical, reflecting their lack of experience with English word order, grammatical patterns, or word endings. Their speech may be "accented," reflecting lack of experience with English sounds, rhythms, and stress patterns. As a result, ELLs may feel self-conscious about speaking, especially in large groups. Criticism, ridicule, and public correction exacerbate these anxieties. ELLs are likely to be more comfortable speaking in small groups.
ELLs may over-use high frequency words like nice or go until they acquire a larger repertoire of more differentiated words, such as beautiful, happy, entertaining, kind, generous or leave, depart, travel, journey, race, hike, skip. While young ELLs naturally acquire the language of play and daily life from social interaction with other students and adults, ELLs require explicit instruction and modeling of the more formal language used in academic settings to talk about reading and writing. In addition, as they listen to literature that is read aloud, Ells become familiar with its language (e.g., "Once upon a time . . . " and ". . . happily ever after") and its structure (introduction of characters, setting, problem, and solution), which are important prerequisites for reading.
With time and lots of opportunities to listen, observe, participate, and interact, ELLs progress in understanding and are able to produce language that is increasingly complete, complex, and grammatical. This is similar to the natural way that most young children learn the languages spoken by their families at home – in the context of activities and relationships.
In some cultures, discussion and story telling are filled with personal anecdotes that are implicitly rather than explicitly connected to the topic. Teachers may sometimes perceive such narratives as rambling or confused. Effective teachers strive to understand such cultural differences and respect them, while at the same time helping children add more sequential and topic centered styles to their repertoire.
Conferences about writing and other opportunities for one-on-one conversations with a teacher provide great support for the development of topic-centered narrative styles for use in academic contexts. In addition, use of their native language can provide ELLs with much-needed clarification, explanation, and self-expression as they go through the difficult process of learning to speak, read, and write in English.
1. Teachers include listening as an integral part of reading and writing instruction.
Teachers' talk is a primary source of information and language input for ELLs. It not only conveys ideas about the topics being discussed but models how to use language, serving as the input or data which learners internalize and use to express their own meanings. The qualities of the teacher's talk are of great importance. Effective teachers often adapt their speech to facilitate language learning. These adaptations may include speaking slowly, using short sentences, paraphrasing the same message several different ways, and explaining word meanings. Teachers also use gestures, pictures, and props to make the meaning more clear.
ELLs learn from listening to read-alouds, songs, poems, and chants. Listening to the sounds, rhymes, and rhythms of English provides ELLs with the auditory experiences they need to pronounce and read English. Beginning ELLs benefit greatly from listening to read-alouds of picture books. Effective teachers use the illustrations to develop vocabulary and to make story meaning clear.
Many ELLs go through a "silent period," during which they listen and observe more than they speak. During this silent period, ELLs benefit from opportunities to participate and interact with others in activities that use gesture, physical movement, art, experiential activities, and single words or short phrases. Effective teachers are aware that ELLs who are quiet in class may be hard at work listening and comprehending. ELLs may take longer to answer a question or volunteer a comment because they need more time to process the meaning and to formulate an appropriate response.
Effective teachers monitor students' listening comprehension. This can be especially useful when English language learners (ELLs) are in their "silent period," during which they listen and observe more than they speak.
Effective teachers say things like:
As ELLs become more proficient in English, teachers begin to read from chapter books and other age-appropriate materials. In this way, they continue to build and monitor students' vocabulary development and listening comprehension.
Effective teachers say things like:
To foster reading comprehension, teachers model how readers make explicit comparisons between the text and their own lives.
Effective teachers say things like:
2. Teachers employ a variety of effective strategies that involve students as active and engaged listeners.
Explicit instruction in listening comprehension strategies is extremely beneficial for English language learners (ELLs). However, beginners in English and those who have not yet learned to read in their primary languages will need more modeling and repeated, explicit explanations of the strategies in order to understand and use them.
Effective teachers use, explain, demonstrate, and revisit strategies throughout the school year. Students who may not be ready to understand the explanations of a strategy in October or November may be able to understand and use the strategy when it is explained and modeled again in February.
Limited English proficiency is not the only reason that ELLs may have difficulty understanding a story. Many stories are difficult for ELLs to understand because the stories contain references to American culture, history, and customs--background knowledge that an ELL may not yet have absorbed.
ELLs learn strategies best when teachers provide explicit instruction and modeling. For example, teachers prepare students to use the strategy of predicting what may happen next in a story.
Effective teachers say things like:
In addition, effective teachers recognize when the context or premise of a story may be unfamiliar to ELLs. Teachers preview the books they read aloud for cultural content that may require explanation before or during the reading. They try to help students make connections to their own experiences. They also select some books because they reflect students' cultures, homelands, languages, and experiences.
Effective teachers say things like:
3. Teachers guide students to identify literary elements as they read aloud, listen to, and discuss books together.
Beginning English language learners (ELLs) and first-time readers need to have literary elements explained, reviewed, and restated. To illustrate literary elements, effective teachers use props to stimulate discussion. For example, they illustrate story structure with a paper folded in thirds labeled "beginning, middle, and end." They differentiate the concepts of character and setting using cutouts, color forms, or flannel board figures and backgrounds. During discussions about books, they review these literary elements in context.
Effective teachers say things like:
4. Teachers help students understand and make connections to their reading through social interactions in which students listen to and build upon each other's responses to the text.
Participating in literature-based discussions provides English language learners (ELLs) with rich opportunities for learning. Beginning ELLs who are not confident speaking in a group can benefit from listening to the language of their peers and experiencing academic conversation. Listening to their classmates' questions and comments in English and/or in a shared primary language can support ELLs' efforts to comprehend difficult texts. ELLs who are reluctant to speak in large-group discussions may feel more comfortable in small groups. Conversation with classmates from diverse backgrounds provides cultural insights and information that can increase comprehension.
Effective teachers vary reading response activities to include art as another way for ELLs to demonstrate their comprehension and reactions. Students can listen and draw, make book posters, and act or pantomime a scene or an emotion. Both teachers and classmates can respond to these artworks, thereby providing ELLs with more language input.
They say things like:
In addition, effective teachers help ELLs discuss stories together by modeling phrases like these:
5. Teachers provide opportunities for students to discuss insights from their reading with each other.
Like all students, English language learners (ELLs) benefit from opportunities to participate in book discussions, interacting with teachers and peers. For many students, book-centered conversation may be a new experience, and they may be unsure of the expectations. They may not understand the differences between summarizing and retelling, recounting versus interpreting or critiquing, revealing the ending of a story or tantalizing their classmates by withholding it. Students may be unaware of conventions such as stating title, author, and topic; describing characters and setting; or explaining why they would or would not recommend the book to others. ELLs and other students may be nervous about engaging in this new type of talk in a large-group setting.
Having a student recall or retell a story can help a teacher assess the student's reading comprehension. However, a student's limited oral English proficiency or self-consciousness about speaking English may inhibit the student's performance and cause the teacher to underestimate the student's comprehension.
Teachers who speak the home languages of ELLs and who wish to assess students' English reading comprehension can use cross-linguistic approaches. Students can benefit from retelling an English story in their home language; conversely, students can read books in their home languages and benefit from reporting on the books orally in English. Research suggests that such cross-linguistic literacy activity promotes metalinguistic awareness.
Effective teachers help ELLs by modeling the task that children are expected to perform and by explicitly stating goals and expectations.
Examples of explicit language models are:
Teachers often let students practice, or even present, in pairs or teams. To support students' academic language development, teachers listen carefully to how students answer questions and then encourage students to clarify, elaborate, and be more precise.
Effective teachers say things like:
6. Teachers model and explain text-to-self, text-to-text, and text-to-world connections for their students.
As with most students, when ELLs can see connections between reading and their own lives, their reading comprehension and engagement increase. However, it can be difficult for ELLs to find such connections if most books and materials represent mainstream culture. Students who rarely find reflections of their own faces, lives, or histories in their books may begin to feel alienated from those books and from school.
While teachers help students identify with universal themes in books, such as rejection in The Ugly Duckling, they also make sure to study some books that reflect diverse experiences and cultural backgrounds. By studying fiction and nonfiction narratives that reflect experiences of ethnic communities, such as Lion Dancer: Ernie Wan's Chinese New Year (Waters, Slovenz-Low, & Cooper, 1991) and My Little Island (Lessac, 1995), ELLs see that others share their experiences of having relatives and roots elsewhere. Effective teachers hold discussions that draw out the students' culturally specific relationships to such texts.
Teachers say things like:
It is also important to highlight the broader connections that other students can make.
Effective teachers say things like:
In a similar vein, informational texts on familiar subjects, such as food in Everyone Eats Rice (Powell, 1997), build upon students' experiences and reduce any feelings of marginalization.
7. Teachers include daily sharing as an important activity in their classrooms.
Cultural factors influence the style of oral language. People from diverse cultures differ in what they tell and how they tell it. Because of language structure and tradition, English speakers tend to center on a topic, present information in a sequential order, and tell linear stories using cause and effect; however, not all cultural groups organize their communications this way. When students from culturally diverse backgrounds share stories in English, teachers sometimes perceive these narratives as rambling or disorganized. Yet, adult members of the students' own communities judge these narratives as well-structured. While it is the responsibility of the school to teach socially valued and academic ways of speaking, effective teachers avoid judging narratives that spring from diverse cultures as evidence of poor thinking skills.
It is important to understand that limited English proficiency and culturally diverse styles of narration influence how students share stories and experiences in class. Effective teachers welcome all students' contributions to class conversations, but also provide guidance in the narrative styles for which students will be held accountable.
Teachers say things like:
8. Teachers provide ample opportunities for students to talk about familiar topics and then demonstrate to students how talking better enables them to write.
The connection between speaking and writing is an especially important one for ELLs. By observing and participating in the teacher's composing processes, ELLs gain insight into many aspects of writing. Students learn that writing may begin with the intention to interact, inform, inquire, amuse, remember, persuade, or celebrate. They realize that words can be broken into sounds that are represented by letters. They notice that the teacher doesn't always try to "sound out" words but sometimes just remembers them or consults the word wall. They see how the teacher thinks about her title as a way to focus her writing. They hear the teacher consider how to begin with an attention-grabbing sentence, and they learn that the teacher is always thinking about what will interest and inform the audience. In this way, they discover the logic behind capitalization, punctuation, and paragraphing.
Finally, ELLs are privy to the teacher's self-evaluation. The teacher might say:
Gradually, students understand that if you can say it you can write it.
Sometimes teachers use the Language Experience Approach to scaffold the transformation of oral language into written language. For this strategy, teachers ask students to tell a story about a drawing or experience and then transcribe the story. Students read and reread the story aloud. The teacher cuts the story apart into sentence strips and word cards for students to scramble and put back in order. After students can competently put the sentences and words in the correct order, the teacher prepares a version with selected words replaced by blanks for students to fill in, or students recopy the complete story.
Another scaffolding strategy is to hold a group discussion on a familiar topic such as favorite weekend activities.
Effective teachers say things like:
Then teachers write a model sentence and list the students' oral contributions on chart paper, such as:
On weekends I like to___________ with ____________.
The list for the first blank might include activities such as:
The following words might be part of a list for the second blank:
Beginning ELLs may need to repeat the sentence pattern and the listed items after the teacher says them in order to match the spoken and written words. Using the chart as a model, students write about their own weekend favorites. Students read their final stories to the class for feedback and discussion. They can illustrate the stories and display them in the classroom. Finally, the stories can even provide the basis for a guessing game.
9. Teachers have regular conversations with individual students about their writing, thereby enabling students to improve the quality of their work.
Teacher-student writing conferences provide excellent opportunities for ELLs to interact one-on-one with the teacher. Not only do students receive individualized attention, but also they are able to speak in a setting that does not present competition from more verbally proficient classmates. Conferences provide teachers with a unique opportunity to learn more about each student and to strengthen the teacher-student relationship.
In conferences, teachers are responsive to the individual student's needs and interests. Teachers adjust their language to the student's comprehension level. During conferences, teachers respond to what students have written and drawn, and they ask clarifying questions to improve the quality of the students' speaking and writing. Beginning ELLs who are not yet writing may come to the conference with a drawing that the teacher can respond to verbally and in print.
Effective teachers say things like:
10. Teachers model how to verbalize understandings and questions about readings and then provide opportunities for students to practice these comprehension strategies.
ELLs spend a great part of their time and energy trying to understand the oral and written English that surrounds them. ELLs benefit from learning how to ask themselves and other people questions that focus on finding and clarifying the information they need. Helpful strategies for ELLs include: rereading, skimming, scanning, and consulting resources to obtain clarification. Explicit modeling and instruction helps students to monitor their comprehension by verbalizing their understandings and pinpointing areas of confusion or missing information. Beginners in English and those who have not yet learned to read in their primary languages will need more modeling and clear explanations of the strategies in order to understand and use them.
Teachers of ELLs keep in mind that limited English word knowledge is an important, but not the only, reason that ELLs may have difficulty understanding what they read. Many stories are difficult for ELLs to understand because the authors have written for an audience that shares background knowledge of American culture, history, and customs.
Effective teachers use, explain, demonstrate, and revisit comprehension strategies throughout the school year. Students who may not be ready to understand a strategy early in the school year may be able to understand and use the strategy when it is explained and modeled again a few months later.
To engage students in their reading, teachers model and explain questioning strategies that send students back to the text to look for story elements such as character (Who?), setting (Where? When?), and problem (What's the matter?). For informational text comprehension, teachers model graphic organizers appropriate to the subject matter, such as the one below.
The work of Asher (1977) and Krashen (1982) establish the research base for the common-sense notion that second language learners need ample opportunity to listen to and develop understanding of their new language. The language that they hear and understand becomes the linguistic input necessary for the process of language acquisition. Second language learners can better understand the language that they hear when contextual clues, such as actions, gestures, visuals, props, settings, and predictable routines, help make the meaning comprehensible (Echeverria, Vogt, & Short, 2004).
Teachers are advised to promote students' language development by simplifying and modifying their language in order to facilitate comprehension. Skillful teachers tune their speech modifications according to students' comprehension levels and prior knowledge. Researchers suggest that teachers should simplify less and less as students improve their understanding (Kliefgen, 1985; Snow, 1995; Yedlin, 2003, 2004).
Typically comprehension develops in advance of the ability to produce language. Therefore, students can understand more complex language than what they can produce (Asher, 1977). A message that is largely comprehensible but contains some challenging words or structures is generally considered optimal input for language acquisition. Many second language learners pass through a "silent period" during which they focus on comprehending and speak very little (Krashen, 1982). To monitor and advance students' comprehension during the period, teachers elicit and observe physical responses to instructions such as "Take out your crayons" or "Show me the lines of latitude on the map" (Asher, 1977; Krashen & Terrel, 1983). As teachers observe students’ appropriate responses, they can slowly begin to increase the complexity of their instructions and invite students to produce one-word answers, sentence completions, and short phrases.
Listening to stories, poems, and talk familiarizes ELLs with the sound system of English, preparing the way for accurate pronunciation and phonemic awareness (Verhoeven, 1999). Listening to interesting and comprehensible stories, poems, and instructional talk can also supply students with vocabulary (Hickman, Pollard-Durodola, & Vaughn, 2004) and with understanding of literary discourse conventions such as "Once upon a time" and "The End" (Elley, 1989; Snow, Burns, & Griffin, 1998; Dickinson & Tabors, 2001). Read-alouds and other opportunities to listen to interesting and understandable oral language and texts are of critical importance to ELLs, as are opportunities to interact with peers and teachers about texts. Instructional conversations (Saunders & Goldenberg, 1998; Tharp & Gallimore, 1991) provide models of how listening to others builds academic discourse and comprehension skills.
Beginning ELLs who are not confident speaking in a group can benefit from listening to the language of their peers and experiencing academic conversation. Listening to their classmates' questions and comments in English and/or in a shared primary language can support ELLs' efforts to comprehend difficult texts. ELLs benefit from participating in and listening to conversations where explicit connections are made both between texts and the readers'; experiences and among texts (Au, 1979). Instructional conversations (Saunders & Goldenberg, 1998; Tharp & Gallimore, 1991), reciprocal teaching (Palinscar & Brown, 1984, 1987) and literature circles (Ruby, 2003) are among the approaches to conversation designed to help literacy learners make such connections.
Oral language is the foundation upon which literacy skills develop (Snow, 1983; Snow, Burns, & Griffin, 1998; Dickinson & Tabors, 2001). Unlike students who come to school already proficient in English, English language learners (ELLs) depend greatly upon school for interactions that support the development of oral English skills, including academic talk (Bartolomé, 1998; Delpit, 1995; Gutiérrez, 1995; Reyes, 1992; Heath, 1982, 1985).
Many ELLs go through a "silent" or pre-production period during which they listen and observe more than they speak (Krashen, 1982). They may speak fluently when using greetings and other basic phrases in routine interpersonal situations, but speak haltingly when constructing English sentences to express more complex ideas (Cummins, 2001; Tabors, 1997) or in settings where they feel self-conscious and insecure (Krashen & Terrel, 1983). Small-group work, work with a partner, and one-on-one conferences or conversations with the teacher (Yedlin, 2003) may help ELLs feel more at ease speaking.
While ELLs acquire the language of socialization and daily life from social interaction with other students and adults (Tabors, 1997), they also require explicit instruction and modeling of the more formal language used in academic settings to talk about reading and writing (Bartolomé, 1998), as well as explicit instruction and feedback on language forms and usage (Fillmore & Snow, 2000).
Skillful second language teachers create verbal scaffolds and participation structures that support and extend language performance beyond what ELLs are able to produce independently (Chaudron, 1988; Ellis, 1994; Yedlin 2003, 2004). Goldenberg (1993) and Ellis (1994) suggest that participation in such collaborative discourse extends and develops second language learners' communication skills. Culturally relevant texts, multicultural literature, and acknowledgement of culturally diverse experiences all promote increased comprehension and engagement (Au, 1998, 1993; Barrera, 1992; Harris, 1994; Conant et al., 2001; Gonzalez, Huerta-Macias, & Tinajero, 1998).
Skillful teachers ask ELLs clarifying questions to elicit more complex language from them (Yedlin, 2003, 2004). Researchers have also noticed that the speech patterns of effective second language teachers contain a high frequency of utterances that serve to extend, expand, and or paraphrase learner utterances (Chaudron, 1988; Ellis, 1994). Such utterances provide students with good language models for more effectively expressing their ideas.
During daily sharing time and class discussions, ELLs’ contributions may be influenced by the narrative and conversational styles of their home communities as well as by their limited English proficiency (McCabe & Bliss, 2003). Researchers caution teachers not to confuse cross-cultural differences in style with cognitive deficit (Cazden, 2001; Delpit, 1995, Michaels, 1981). Teachers are advised to use print media, multicultural literature, and recordings to draw students' attention to diverse organizational patterns and to analyze the ways in which these differ (Adger, 1997). Activities such as situational role-playing can raise issues such as how to speak effectively in different roles and settings (e.g., talking with cousins at home or a college admissions interview) (Cazden, 2001; Heath, 1996; Gutiérrez, 1999).
Research shows that ELLs benefit from explicit instruction and modeling of how to participate in text-based discussions. Instructional conversations (IC) (Saunders & Goldenberg, 1998; Tharp & Gallimore, 1991) constitute one approach to structuring topic-centered and book-centered interactions. Through professional development, teachers learn how to promote discussion in which students explicitly build upon each other's contributions, ask for and provide clarifications, use complex language to express themselves, and provide text-based evidence for their opinions.
To help students meet the expectations for academic talk, Bartolomé (1998) advocates for assignments such as oral reports and formal presentations that have specific guidelines for academic talk; this sets these assignments apart from daily informal conversations. Literature circles are another discussion format with specified participant roles such as summarizer, questioner, and connector. Ruby (2003) and Heyden (2003) report on how ELL students can learn academic participation norms and develop oral language skills through the carefully scaffolded participation in literature circles.
Harris-Wright (1999) describes "bi-dialectical" programs where young speakers of African American vernacular English are taught strategies for helping make their oral and written narratives more understandable to listeners and readers from outside their communities. Such strategies include considering and supplying background information that their listeners may lack and organizing their accounts of events chronologically.
[return] Adger, C. T. (1997). Issues and implications of English dialects for teaching English as a second language. (TESOL Professional Papers No. 3). Alexandria Virginia: TESOL.
[return] Asher, J. (1977). Learning another language through actions. Los Gatos, CA: Sky Oaks Productions.
[return] Au, K. H. (1979). Using the experience-text-relationship method with minority children. The Reading Teacher, 32, 677-679.
[return] Au, K. H. (1993). Literacy instruction in multicultural settings. New York: Harcourt Brace.
[return] Au, K. H. (1998). Social constructivism and the school literacy learning of students of diverse backgrounds. Journal of Literacy Research, 20, 297-319.
[return] Barrera, R. B. (1992). The cultural gap in literature-based literacy instruction. Education and Urban Society, 24, 227-243.
[return] Bartolomé, L. I. (1998). The misteaching of academic discourses: The politics of language in the classroom. Boulder: Westview Press.
[return] Cazden, C. (2001). Classroom discourse: The language of teaching and learning. Portsmouth NH: Heinemann.
[return] Chaudron, C. (1988). Second language classrooms: Research on teaching and learning. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.
[return] Conant, F., Rosebery, A., Warren, B., & Hudicourt-Barnes, J. (2001). The sound of drums. In E. McIntyre, A. Rosebery & N. Gonzalez (Eds.), Building bridges: Linking home and school (pp. 51-60). Portsmouth, NH: Heinemann.
[return] Cummins, J. (2001). Language, power and pedagogy. Clevedon, UK: Multilingual Matters.
[return] Delpit, L. (1995). Other people’s children: Cultural conflict in the classroom. New York: The New Press.
[return] Dickinson, D., & Tabors, P. (2001). Beginning literacy with language. Baltimore: Paul E. Brookes.
[return] Echeverria, J., Vogt, M., & Short, D. (2004). Making content comprehensible for English language learners: The SIOP model. Boston: Allyn & Bacon.
[return] Elley, W. (1989). Vocabulary acquisition from listening to stories. Reading Research Quarterly, 24(2), 174-187.
[return] Ellis, R. (1994). The study of second language acquisition. Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press.
[return] Fillmore, L. W., & Snow, C. E. (2000). What teachers need to know about language. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Education, Office of Educational Research and Improvement.
[return] Goldenberg, C. (1993). Instructional conversations: Promoting comprehension through discussion. The Reading Teacher, 46(4), 316-326.
[return] Gonzalez, M. L., Huerta-Macias, A., & Tinajero, J. V., (Eds.) (1998). Educating Latino students: A guide to successful practice. Lancaster, PA: Technomic Publishing Company.
[return] Gutiérrez, K. (1995). Unpackaging academic discourse. Discourse Processes, 19(1), 21-38.
[return] Gutiérrez, K., Baquedano-Lopez, P., & Tejeda, C. (1999). Rethinking diversity: Hybridity and hybrid language practices in the third space. Mind, Culture, & Activity: An International Journal, 6(4), 286-303.
[return] Harris, V. J. (1994). Multiculturalism and children’s literature. In F. Lehr & J. Osborn (Eds.), Reading, language, and literacy: Instruction for the twenty-first century (pp. 201-214). Mahwah, NJ: Erlbaum.
[return] Harris-Wright, K. (1999). Enhancing bidialectalism in urban African American students. In Adger, C. T., Christian, D. & Taylor, O. (Eds.), Making the connection: Language and academic achievement among African American students. Urbana, IL: National Council of Teachers.
[return] Heath, S. B. (1982). Questioning at home and at school: A comparative study. In G. Spindler (Ed.), Doing the ethnography of schooling (pp. 103-131). Prospect Heights, IL: Waveland Press.
[return] Heath, S. B. (1985). Literacy or literate skills? Considerations for ESL/EFL learners. In Larson, L., Judd, E. L., & Messerschmidt, D. S. (Eds.), On TESOL ’84: A Brave New World for TESOL. Washington, DC: TESOL.
[return] Heath, S. B. (1996). Ways with words. Language, life, and work in communities and classrooms. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.
[return] Heyden, R. (2003). Literature circles as a differentiated instructional strategy for including ESL students in mainstream classrooms. Canadian Modern Language Review, 59(3), 463-475.
[return] Hickman, P., Pollard-Durodola, S., Vaughn, S. (2004). Storyboook reading: Improving vocabulary and comprehension for English language learners. The Reading Teacher, 57(8), 720-30.
[return] Kliefgen, J. (1985). Skilled variation in a kindergarten teacher’s use of foreigner talk. In S. Gass & C. Madden (Eds.), Input in second language acquisition. New York: Newbury House.
[return] Krashen, S. (1982). Principles and practices in second language acquisition. Oxford: Pergamon Press.
[return] Krashen, S., & Terrel, T. (1983). The natural approach: Language acquisition in the classroom. Hayward, CA: The Alemany Press.
[return] McCabe, A., & Bliss, L. S. (2003). Patterns of narrative discourse: A multicultural, life span approach. Boston: Allyn & Bacon.
[return] Michaels, S. (1981). "Sharing time": Children's narrative styles and differential access to literacy. Language and Society, 10, 423-442.
Northeast and Islands Regional Educational Laboratory at Brown University. (2002). The diversity kit: An introductory resource for social change in education. Providence RI: Author.
[return] Palinscar, A., & Brown. A. (1984). Reciprocal teaching of comprehension-fostering and comprehension-monitoring activities. Cognition and Instruction, 1(2), 117-175.
[return] Palinscar, A., & Brown, A. (1987). Can student discussion boost comprehension? Instructor, 96(5).
[return] Reyes, M. (1992). Challenging venerable assumptions: Literacy instruction for linguistically different students. Harvard Educational Review, 62(4), 427-446.
[return] Ruby, J. (2003). Fostering multilayered literacy through literature circles. TESOL Journal, 12(3), 47-48.
[return] Saunders, W., & Goldenberg, C. (1998). The effects of instructional conversations and literature logs on the story comprehension and thematic understanding of English proficient and limited English proficient students. Santa Cruz, CA: Center for Research on Education, Diversity & Excellence.
[return] Snow, C. E. (1983). Literacy and language: Relationships during the pre-school years. Harvard Educational Review, 53, 165-189.
[return] Snow, C. E. (1995). Issues in the study of input: Fine-tuning, universality, individual and developmental differences, and necessary causes. In B. MacWhinney & P. Fletcher (Eds.), Handbook of Child Language. Oxford, UK: Blackwell.
[return] Snow, C. E., Burns, M. S., & Griffin, S., (Eds). (1998). Preventing reading failure in young children. Washington, DC: National Academy Press.
[return] Tabors, P. O. (1997). One child, two languages. Baltimore: Brookes.
[return] Tharp, R. G., & Gallimore, R. (1991). The instructional conversation: Teaching and learning in social activity. Santa Cruz, CA: Center for Research on Education, Diversity & Excellence, NCRCDSLL Research Reports.
[return] Verhoeven, L. (1999). Second language reading. In D. Wagner, R. L. Venezky, & B. Street (Eds.), Literacy: An international handbook. Boulder: Westview Press.
[return] Yedlin, J. (2003). Teacher talk and writing development in an urban, English-as-a-second-language, first-grade classroom. Unpublished doctoral dissertation, Harvard Graduate School of Education.