Some students came to my school speaking no English, others speaking no Spanish, but ALL students are now bilingual learners! Students come from a diverse range of economic and cultural backgrounds. Some students come from a structured preschool or Pre-K program, but for others, it's their first experience in school. They have already developed strong connections and friendships.
Students are excited about learning two languages, but it makes focusing and listening a bit more challenging.
We are working to build Social-Emotional skills to be better friends and learners.
It's important to help all students build social-emotional skills to help them extend their focus and concentration in the classroom. We begin all new units of study by building oracy. Students spend time first in whole group to learn new vocabulary and language and then work with peers to practice it. This gives me opportunities to work individually and with small groups to build student skills. Students also work independently to demonstrate their skills. Each step of the process requires unique social-emotional skills that help students succeed whether it is sitting listening and participating in the whole group, communicating and listening to others during center time when noise can be an issue for students with sensory issues or building stamina for rigorous independent tasks.
I've selected tools like flexible seating and fidgets that will help students build their stamina in large group instruction, during small group work, and during independent work opportunities.
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