Help My Refugee Students Become Super Star Readers
My students need children's books that are specifically aligned to their reading ability level so that they may be successful when reading independently and in small groups.
Imagine being 10 years old, forced to flee your home as a refugee, and ending up in a new country, trying to learn to read and write in an alphabet and language you had never seen or heard before. This is the reality for my 2nd, 3rd, 4th and 5th grade students who are trying to learn English.
My students are all refugees who have fled their home countries due to war and genocide and have been resettled in an urban neighborhood on the east coast of the United States.
My students came to America with literally nothing more than the clothes on their backs. Unfortunately, the neighborhood to which they were resettled is part of a large urban school district, high in poverty and low in resources. Seemingly overnight my school has developed a large international student population that continues to grow as more and more refugees are resettled in to the area. Unfortunately my school lacks the means to keep up with the unique needs of this diverse group of English Language Learners. Despite the extreme hardships my students have endured during their short lives, they come to school every day with smiles on their faces, incredibly eager to learn.
My students come to me during the day from their mainstream classrooms for English language instruction which encompasses reading, writing, speaking and listening skills. My students have all been in the country for less than a year, and come from an area of the world that uses an alphabet different from ours. As a result, I have to go "back to basics" teaching 8 through 12 year olds the letters of our alphabet, the sounds they make and how to form them in writing. Given this, my students are not yet able to read grade level texts, which is currently all that is available within the school building. The books I am requesting are a mix of low beginning phonics focused texts coupled with high interest but low level "chapter" books for the 4th and 5th graders. With these materials I will be able to work with students in small groups with sets of 4 texts, or allow students to read independently from books at their specific ability level, setting them up to achieve success!
My students love to learn but rarely feel successful at school as the information and materials presented to them during the day in their mainstream classroom are far above their current language and literacy abilities.
By providing books geared to my students' specific ability levels, you are setting them up with the tools they need to be successful readers as they learn English. Please help me enable these newcomer refugee students to become more fluent readers and confident children.
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