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Help! My Kids Don't All Speak English

How to Set Up a Language Workshop in Your Linguistically Diverse Classroom

By Nancy Akhavan
Foreword by Elaine Garan

    Nancy Akhavan provides the inspiration, theory, and practical know-how that teachers need to support language development within a workshop setting. By creating structures that capture time for rich talk and student thinking, she brings English learners into full participation in the classroom community.
    —Laurie Pessah, Teachers College Reading and Writing Project
Today more nonnative speakers are entering classrooms than ever before. Some may be encountering English for the first time; some may understand written or spoken English but have difficulty communicating in it; and others
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    Nancy Akhavan provides the inspiration, theory, and practical know-how that teachers need to support language development within a workshop setting. By creating structures that capture time for rich talk and student thinking, she brings English learners into full participation in the classroom community.
    —Laurie Pessah, Teachers College Reading and Writing Project
Today more nonnative speakers are entering classrooms than ever before. Some may be encountering English for the first time; some may understand written or spoken English but have difficulty communicating in it; and others may be well on their way to fluency but need guidance in specific language skills. To meet these students' needs while addressing the many, varied needs of those who already speak English as their primary language you'll have to think about your teaching differently. Help! My Kids Don't All Speak English can help.

Help! My Kids Don't All Speak English offers an exciting new take on English language instruction—the language workshop. Language workshop focuses on the specific language needs of every child, allowing you the flexibility to scaffold instruction by modeling specific uses of language, posing problems and ideas that expand kids' language skills, and teaching specific thinking strategies. Students will find the guidance and opportunity necessary for acquiring language, learn the structures of discussion and debate, and think through ideas and texts. Nancy Akhavan details how to make language workshop happen in your classroom, sharing frameworks and strategies that help children:

  • share ideas, decisions, and understandings orally and in writing
  • think critically by analyzing, synthesizing, and comparing texts
  • acquire and apply the conventions of English
  • gain language skills through authentic literacy lessons.
Warm, supportive, and complete with classroom-tested units of study, example workshop lessons, ready-to-use graphic organizers, and a rich booklist designed specifically for use with language workshop, Nancy Akhavan's Help! My Kids Don't All Speak English is going to make a difference to every member of your classroom.

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