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Pop culture helps students learn English
South China Morning Post
China: Composing bilingual rap with puns like these has helped students in a Band Three school in a working-class area build bridges between their Chinese mother tongue and English. By identifying more closely with hip hop and rap artists as role models for their own language learning, students develop identities as English-speakers, says Angel Lin, associate dean at the HKU faculty of education. A pioneer of innovative interdisciplinary approaches to second language education, particularly for young people, she advocates entry points like these to create a fun, meaningful context for the use of English among students.
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What a No Child Left Behind replacement means to Latino students
Voxxi
Over the past few years No Child Left Behind has been the primary and secondary educational program left behind. Now that both the Senate and House are making overtures to re-introduce or replace the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, later called No Child Left Behind by former President George W. Bush, there is renewed hope from the National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials that Hispanic students and English language learners will no longer be forgotten.
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School accountability and equal access to arts education for ELLs
By Beth Crumpler
In many U.S. school districts, ELLs who have not met proficiency on accountability benchmarks in reading and math on state standardized assessments for AYP are being denied access to arts education. Arts education is viewed as a fun, optional elective, while reading and math are considered core academic subjects for AYP. Since these ELL students struggle to meet grade-level expectations, reading and math remediation is often scheduled in lieu of arts education. Denial of the arts for these students is not a solution. Instead, use art as a tool for ELLs.
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Industry Pulse: Does you school district integrate reading and math with the arts?
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TESOL Advocacy & Policy Summit 2013
TESOL
There's still time to register for the only event of its kind in the United States, the TESOL Advocacy & Policy Summit. Join policy experts, advocates, and colleagues from across the country, 16–18 June at the Crystal City Marriott in Arlington, VA. Receive hands-on leadership training, meet with members of congress, and learn how to advocate effectively in your community. Registration closes Friday, 7 June so don't delay! Click here for more information.

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TESOL Awards and Grants
TESOL
Did you know that grants and awards are available to support your attendance at TESOL 2014 in Portland, Oregon, USA? Apply by 1 November 2013.
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New for 2013! ESL for the Secondary Science Teacher
TESOL
Registration is now open for a brand new online course for science teachers! From 8 July to 4 August, ESL for the Secondary Science Teacher participants will learn about scientific language and learning, SLA basics, cultural perspectives, and instructional design and assessment. Deadline for registration is Monday, 1 July 2013. Register here or visit the TESOL Attend and Learn webpage. Please send questions to edprograms@tesol.org and put "ESL Science" in the subject line.
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Back by popular demand: TESOL's Training of Trainers
TESOL
Need to start or revitalize an English language program? Then TESOL: Training of Trainers online course is for you! This course allows you to reflect on your current (or would-be) program, learn how to boost your program's capacity, and most important, bring your program into the 21st century. Participants receive free online resources. Deadline for registration is Monday, 1 July 2013. Register here or visit the TESOL Attend and Learn webpage. Questions can be sent to edprograms@tesol.org and put "Training of Trainers" in the subject line.
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FEATURED ARTICLE
TRENDING ARTICLE
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What a No Child Left Behind replacement means to Latino students
Voxxi
Over the past few years No Child Left Behind has been the primary and secondary educational program left behind.

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The current education policy may be hurting Latino students
ABC News
A group of Latino education experts from across the country urged policymakers in Washington, D.C., this week to take steps to improve education for Hispanic students.

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English learners and the new science standards
Education Week
The final set of new science standards released to the public presents an unprecedented opportunity for English-language learners to learn rich, academic language at the same time they are learning rigorous science content, language experts say.

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No Child Left Behind: Pass or fail?
The Hill
If you are a parent of one of the 50 million public schoolchildren in the United States, the odds are your child has taken a standardized test within the past few weeks. The odds also suggest that you took such a test yourself once upon a time, though probably not as early or as often as your kids. You and your children have the federal No Child Left Behind Act to thank for the modern ubiquity of standardized testing. No Child Left Behind is something of a forgotten stepchild now, having been expired without formal reauthorization longer than it was actually in effect.
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State chiefs: Common Core requires flexibility, not a pause
Education Week
The Council of Chief State School Officers is rejecting calls for a moratorium on any high stakes tied to the Common Core State Standards, and is instead suggesting that states have almost all of the power they need to smooth the way for what could be a rocky transition. What the chiefs do want, however, is some flexibility from the U.S. Department of Education and from U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan — from No Child Left Behind itself or the waivers already granted — during these next couple of tricky years as the Common Core is fully implemented and common tests come on line. In fact, about three-dozen chiefs or their representatives met with three high-level federal department officials last week in Chicago to talk about these issues.
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Mary calls for 'past best practices' on English
Daily Express
Malaysia: Newly appointed Deputy Education Minister Datuk Mary Yap has suggested that "past best practices," including prioritizing aspects of grammar, be incorporated into school teaching methods for the English language. She opined there was a need to bring back proven best practices to improve the standard of English in schools. Mary said the Ministry was aware of the issue of the English language, which had been constantly debated in the media, particularly the unfavorable results on English proficiency in the Ujian Penilaian Sekolah Rendah examination.
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Duncan touts advantages of bilingualism
Education Week
His comments aren't likely to ignite a new battle in the bilingual education wars, but U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan over breakfast gave perhaps his clearest statements to date on the benefits of dual-language development and instruction, especially for students who are English-language learners. English learners, he said in a meeting with reporters, come to school with a major asset — their home languages — that educators should capitalize on, especially in the early grades.
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Figuring out accountability during the Common Core transition
Education Week
The next couple of years will be rough going. That's no surprise to anyone who's been tracking the Common Core State Standards and waivers from key parts of the No Child Left Behind Act. Those big movements have pressed states into changing academic expectations, curricula, teacher evaluation, accountability and other tectonic plates of the school landscape. And common assessments, slated to make their debut in the spring of 2015, will likely provide the numbers that influence evaluations of many educators, schools and districts.
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District leaders urge more time to implement Common Core State Standards
Education Week
Four organizations representing school district leaders today called for "adequate" time to manage the tricky transition to the Common Core State Standards and tests. "Adequate" isn't defined in the joint statement, however. "We must make adequate time for a thoughtful conversation about how assessments can be used to provide instructionally useful information to schools in a timely manner," say the American Association of School Administrators, the National Association of Elementary School Principals, the National Association of Secondary School Principals and the National School Boards Association.
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Common Core online practice tests unveiled
Education Week
Students, parents and teachers who are anxious or merely curious about the coming online assessments matched to the Common Core State Standards will now have the opportunity to go through a test run of sorts. The Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium, one of two major coalitions of states designing the tests, has released sets of online sample test questions for grades 3-8 and 11 in both English language arts and math, the first two subjects to be tested. The Common Core tests will be delivered online in participating states during the 2014-2015 academic year.
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In effort to turn around schools, Nevada eyes English language learners
Reno Gazette-Journal
It's early one morning at Jay W. Jeffers Elementary School in Las Vegas, and Lisa Cabrera-Terry's voice is spilling from the first-grade classroom where she's reading about an illiterate grandma who surprises her family by learning to read. Cabrera-Terry takes a fat marker to a sheet of poster paper and adds to a wheel-shaped diagram of words that describe feelings. "If your face beams, you're sooooo happy," she said. "Why are they so happy about grandma reading?" To the untrained eye, the lesson is nothing unusual. But Cabrera-Terry is at a school where 83 percent of incoming kindergartners don't speak English, where you take every picture book page slow and where you tell students exactly what "astonished" means and explicitly that it's a word to describe a feeling.
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Rising diversity in Sioux Falls, SD, puts strain on ELL education
The Argus Leader
Except for Huron, there is no more diverse public school district in all of South Dakota than Sioux Falls. At last count in October, officials reported that 29.5 percent of the district's roughly 22,000 students were minorities. In Huron, where 41 percent of all its students are children of color, the majority are Karen refugees from Myanmar, or Hispanics. But refugee, immigrant and racial groups in Sioux Falls represent 51 different languages from across the globe that are spoken in homes here.
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Students hone their English skills thanks to lessons by radio
The Cambodia Daily
Cambodia: "Teaching English by Radio," a three-year-long experimental program that aims to improve English-language lessons in schools with the assistance of a BBC-produced radio program, has boasted dramatic results from its pilot scheme, with hopes now high that it can be expanded nationwide. The project started in January 2010 on FM radio in Stung Treng and Preah Vihear provinces, and for comparative purposes in Phnom Penh, where general levels of education are much higher. It was designed with the goal of upgrading the English language skills of rural Cambodian students, especially in speaking and listening, by supplementing their education through the use of songs, quizzes and voices speaking in English accents.
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Not English-only
Philadelphia Public School Notebook
Philadelphia's foreign-born population is growing, and Mayor Nutter wants to make the city, including its school system, more welcoming to immigrants. But the School District's effort to teach an ever-changing and diverse group of English language learners has been plagued by disorganization, insufficient teacher training and a lack of consistent, effective instruction. Advocates and the District's own evaluations point out that in many schools, these students are marginalized academically and their families effectively shut out of meaningful communication about their children.
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'Does science need a global language?'
Inside Higher Ed
Whether or not science needs a global language — which, Scott L. Montgomery believes, it does — like it or not, it already has one: English. So Montgomery argues in his new book, "Does Science Need a Global Language? English and the Future of Research" (University of Chicago Press). Montgomery, who is an affiliate faculty member in the Jackson School of International Studies at the University of Washington, lays out a host of data in support of his claim that English has more and more become the language of scientific communication and publication — and that it is likely to remain so for quite some time to come.
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TRENDING ARTICLES
Missed last week's issue? See which articles your colleagues read most.

    The current education policy may be hurting Latino students (ABC News)
Teaching English is abstract science (By Ream Odetallah)
English teachers from Britain to teach in Asian countries (The Star)
Native-speaking English teachers in decline (The Prague Post)
Language is in our biology (The Norwegian University of Science and Technology via Science Daily)

Don't be left behind. Click here to see what else you missed.


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Spanish speakers invited to ESL breakfast club
Gazettes
Targeting a dense population in downtown Long Beach, Calif., Neighborhood Church/La Vecindad is offering a new, one-on-one English as a second language mentoring program called ESL Breakfast Club. The new program, especially designed for families, will include free personalized instruction time with retired schoolteachers as well as free childcare for parents participating in the program.
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Examine introduction of English test in UPSC, HC tells center
Deccan Herald
Indian: Delhi High Court has directed the central government to form a panel to examine a plea against the UPSC's decision to introduce a compulsory English skill test in the prelims of the civil service examinations since 2011. A division bench of Chief Justice D. Murugesan and Justice Rajiv Sahai Endlaw directed the center to set up the committee within three months and take a decision on the issue in nine months. The court's direction came on a plea filed by retired professor Dinanath Batra alleging that the test of English Language Comprehension Skills adversely affects the Hindi and other regional language speaking candidates in taking the civil services exam.
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Students can learn by explaining, studies say
Education Week
Children are quick to ask "why?" and "how?" when it comes to new things, but research suggests elementary and preschool students learn more when teachers turn the questions back on them. In a symposium at the annual Association for Psychological Science research meeting here this month, panelists discussed how and when asking students for explanations can best enhance their learning.
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Closing the vocabulary gap
Language Magazine
One promise of public education is to level the playing field across the socioeconomic and ethnic spectrum. Unfortunately, the system is not fulfilling that promise. The achievement gap has been an issue for decades, and it's getting worse. A recent study released by Stanford University sociologist Sean F. Reardon shows that the gap has widened by 40 percent since the 1960s. The study looked at the disparity in academic achievement between students in the tenth percentile of family income against students in the ninetieth percentile. Standardized test scores were used as a metric, which is fairly common in achievement gap studies. Other metrics include high school dropout rates and college graduation rates.
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Raising readers, writers and spellers
Psychology Today
Common Core State Standards — adopted by 45 states — is supposed to bring back writing in schools. Ironically, a writing revolution in schools happened 37 years ago when an eloquent professor named Donald Graves cracked the psychology of writing. Today some teachers fear Common Core is wrecking writing instruction in their classrooms. The father of the writing revolution in schools, the late Donald Graves, founded the Writing Process Laboratory at the University of New Hampshire in 1976 that would have profound impact on the teaching of writing in the English-speaking world. Graves and his research assistants conducted classroom research projects that gave authority to what he called "the writing process." Thousands of teachers came to visit and other researchers joined in and disseminated his work creating a worldwide educational movement.
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7 amazingly easy video ideas for capturing and keeping students' attention
THE Journal
Keeping students attentive in the 21st century classroom is no easy feat. Sure, there's the buzzword — "engagement" — that pervades education technology rhetoric, but what does engagement really look like, and how do teachers achieve it? For veteran educators Dotty Corbiere, a math specialist at Meadowbrook School in Weston, Mass., and Rushton Hurley, founder of the nonprofit organization Next Vista for Learning and a former high school Japanese language teacher and principal, the answer is video.
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To get students invested, involve them in decisions big and small
MindShift
When asked why he became a scientist, Nobel Laureate Isidor Rabi attributed his success to his mother. Every day, she would ask him the same question about his school day: "Did you ask a good question today?" "Asking good questions — made me become a scientist!" Rabi said. Questions are critical, and how to manage and navigate a good question requires practice. "Coming up with the right question involves vigorously thinking through the problem, investigating it from various angles, turning closed questions into open-ended ones and prioritizing which are the most important questions to get at the heart of the matter," say authors Dan Rothstein and Luz Santana in their book, "Make Just One Change: Teach Students to Ask Their Own Questions."
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Center Director/Teacher-Trainers for new English Language Institute, Higher Committee for Education Development in Iraq and Ball State University, Iraq

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The TESOL English Language Bulletin is presented as a service to members of TESOL International Association and other English language teaching professionals. For information about TESOL member benefits, visit www.tesol.org or contact us at membership@tesol.org.

TESOL English Language Bulletin is a digest of the most important news selected for TESOL International Association from thousands of sources by the editors of MultiBriefs, an independent organization that also manages and sells advertising. TESOL International Association does not endorse any of the advertised products and services. Opinions expressed in the articles are those of the author and not of TESOL.

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