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Balanced Literacy for English Language Learners, K-2

By Linda Chen, Eugenia Mora-Flores

With lesson ideas, strategies, and vivid classroom examples, Chen and Mora-Flores show you how to adapt your current routines to meet the needs of your youngest ELLs.  They provide a balance of research and theory with practical strategies that can be used in any classroom.

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Full Description

If your classroom has English Language Learners (ELLs), and whose doesn’t, you’ve probably wondered whether the literacy methods you’ve used successfully with English speakers can work for nonnative speakers. Yes, they do, and in Balanced Literacy for English Language Learners, K-2, you’ll find out why they work and what adaptations you need to make to ensure that ELLs fully develop their reading and writing abilities.

Linda Chen and Eugenia Mora-Flores examine how to lead ELLs toward independence through basic frameworks and techniques you know and may already teach with. Their integrated, comprehensive approach focuses on seven specific aspects of balanced instruction that help students learn, expand, and extend their literacy skills, including:

  • interactive read-aloud
  • emergent story book read-aloud
  • shared reading
  • reading workshop
  • writing workshop
  • guided reading
  • word work

Through transcripts, lesson ideas, and vivid classroom descriptions Chen and Mora-Flores show you how to plan for and adapt your literacy lessons to meet the needs of ELLs as well as what aspects of your existing curriculum may already support them. In addition, they make explicit and accessible the research and literacy and language development theories that make the balanced literacy approach work.

Balanced Literacy for English Language Learners, K-2, is thoroughly practical, grounded in the latest research and theory, applicable in all English–based classroom settings, and full of great ideas for veteran, novice, and preservice teachers. With emphases on scaffolding learning across the day and the use of specific, familiar instructional strategies, it offers best practice strategies for helping little children take big steps into a new language.


1. Language Development
2. Literacy Development
3. Putting the Essential Elements of Literacy in Place Across the Day
4. Interactive Read-Aloud
5. Emergent Story Book Read-Aloud
6. Shared Reading
7. Reader’s Workshop
8. Writer’s Workshop
9. Guided Reading
10. Word Work
Concluding Thoughts
A. Academic Language Functions and Forms
B. Bloom’s Taxonomy
C. Cloze Procedure for Teaching Cueing Systems
D. Graphic Organizers for Developing Language and Literacy
E. Literacy Genres
F. Learning Center Activity Cards
G. Word Sorts
Works Cited