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Home   Communities   Publications   Education   Issues   Convention   Join TESOL   July 15, 2014

 





Colombia launches new program to promote English as second language
Colombia Reports
Colombia: Colombia's President Juan Manuel Santos launched a new program called "Colombia Very Well," with the intention of promoting bilingualism in Colombia. According to a press statement released by the Office of the Presidency, the program is intended to promote bilingualism in Colombia, stating, "Today, only 9,000 high school graduates have an intermediate level of English. Our goal is to increase that number to 185,000 in ten years." In addition to promoting English among students, the project also aims to mobilize workers in the private and public sectors with the knowledge of English, and to strengthen a culture that values bilingualism as part of education.
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Districts debate merits of master's for teachers
The Associated Press via ABC News
Efforts to eliminate extra pay for teachers who earn advanced degrees are gaining momentum in a small but growing number of U.S. schools, stirring a national debate about how best to compensate quality educators and angering teachers who say the extra training is valuable. More than half of the nation's teachers have master's degrees or higher, but the changing salary structure is giving pause to others considering the same path.
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Summer school fills in gaps for migrant students
Springfield News-Leader
Sixth-grader Van Thang immediately comes across as bright and articulate, explaining in English — not his first language — that he loves to learn and plans to become a physician. But like many of Springfield's migrant students, there are gaps in his education, academic terms he's never been taught and words he struggles to understand because he didn't grow up in the United States.
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TESOL supports the English Learning and Innovation Act
TESOL
TESOL International Association sent a letter of support to Rep. Joe Garcia, D-Fla., for the English Learning and Innovation Act, a bill he is planning to introduce shortly in the U.S. House of Representatives. The bill would create new federal funding streams to spark innovation of effective approaches to language instruction, and to equip districts with the resources to handle the influx of English language learners. Read TESOL's letter of support.
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Effective Peer Feedback Through Modeling: Part 2
TESOL
Use this interactive classroom activity with your academic writing students to teach them how to turn ineffective peer feedback constructive and positive. Other recent TESOL Blog posts: Teaching Tip: Cloud Storage & Why You Need It; Enhancing Language Education: A Conference on Language; and TESOL Association: Update on Governance Review.
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TESOL supports the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act
TESOL
The Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act has been many years in the making, and it represents a true compromise between previous reauthorization proposals. The bill includes many of the recommendations supported by TESOL International Association and other advocacy organizations in the adult education community. The U.S. Senate has approved the bill, and it is due to be taken up by the U.S. House of Representatives this week. Read TESOL's letter of support.
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Districts debate merits of master's for teachers
The Associated Press via ABC News
Efforts to eliminate extra pay for teachers who earn advanced degrees are gaining momentum in a small but growing number of U.S. schools, stirring a national debate about how best to compensate quality educators and angering teachers who say the extra training is valuable.

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The 'common' in Common Core fractures as state support falters
The Hechinger Report
The Common Core's main selling point was that new, shared standards would ensure American students were learning at the same rates across state lines. Common standards — linked to common tests — would tell schools in Illinois how they stacked up against schools in Massachusetts or California. Now, as more states back out of the tests, the "common" in Common Core is threatened.

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More educational services needed for immigrants and English learners
Contra Costa Times
California's future success depends on its ability to integrate immigrants and their children into colleges and the workforce, according to a recent report.

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Where are the nation's 'most productive' school districts?
Education Week
Is your school district spending its likely tight budget on the right things? New reports suggest many aren't. Three reports by the Center for American Progress, a progressive think tank, examine whether districts are properly targeting their budgets to areas that will most effectively address academic success for students. The reports are a follow-up to a similar assessment the group completed in 2011.
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Activists take teacher tenure battle to more states
U.S. News & World Report
Parents, students and legislators are challenging teacher tenure laws in an increasing number of states, as the influence of a landmark decision in California begins to ripple throughout the country. Groups are turning their attention to filing copycat lawsuits after the Vergara v. California ruling reignited tenure debates in states including New York, Connecticut and New Jersey. "This is unprecedented," says William Koski, a professor of education and law at Stanford University. "It is relatively unusual for courts to get involved in the nitty-gritty of any educational policies, much less teacher employment rules like this."
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Summer camp improves elementary school students' English
KTHV-TV
The Little Rock School District in Arkansas has hired more than 25 teachers from all over the county this summer to help elementary school students learning English as a second language at Camp Can Do. The students vary from first to fifth grade and are mentored depending on their level of English proficiency. They go through courses that integrate sciences, social studies and math to prepare them for the upcoming school year.
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English language lessons for baseball prospects pay off for teams, players
The Associated Press via Fox News Latino
During a friendly dugout chat before a game, Hector Sanchez joked about the hazards of catching for hard-throwing San Francisco starter Tim Lincecum because of the number of balls that must be stopped in the dirt. "Another day at the office," he said, grinning. Sanchez uses the typical English phrase naturally these days after hours of hard work in English classes while playing in the minor leagues. He puts his improved English skills right up there with his biggest strides on the field, which include catching Lincecum's June 25 no-hitter.
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Infants begin learning speech mechanics long before their first word; speaking to them early is key to language development
Medical Daily
Babies are wonderful beings. Sure, they scream and cry uncontrollably, dribble everywhere, and you're cleaning up after them constantly. But put all that to the side, and what you're left with is a lovable little thing that always seems to be learning something new — it's rather impressive, actually. One of their biggest moments comes when they utter their first word, and a new study now finds that in order for this to happen, infants begin rehearsing the mechanics of language much earlier.
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TRENDING ARTICLES
Missed last week's issue? See which articles your colleagues read most.

    Education Department building partnerships to explore ELL supports (Education Week)
New Obama initiative stresses equal access to good teachers (The Huffington Post)
The elephant in the language classroom (Edutopia)
Study: Gaming kids better at English (The Local)
International students flock to US high schools (USA Today)

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


Recent study sheds new light on second language learning in adulthood
Medical Xpress
A recent study shows that assimilation of L2 vowels to L1 phonemes governs language learning in adulthood; researchers urge development of novel methods of second language teaching. The behavioral and neural evidence of the study was found by researchers at Aalto University in Finland and at the University of Salento in Italy. The study was the first one to identify the neural mechanisms underlying the learning of L2 sounds (second language) in adulthood.
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Why storytelling in the classroom matters
Edutopia (commentary)
What is "storytelling"? Telling stories, of course! In 2014, there are so many diverse, wonderful, and sometimes overwhelming ways to do this. What I want to explore is traditional, oral storytelling, which has been a part of human life since we first left Africa 200,000 or more years ago. Perhaps storytelling was the reason language developed in the first place, as our minds began to inquire, wonder, think.
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How much multitasking should be done in the classroom?
Edudemic (commentary)
"Ability to multitask." That phrase is seen on nearly every job description that I've ever read. It doesn't matter what industry you're in or what job you're applying for — everyone expects everyone to be able to multitask. But what does that mean, exactly? Does it mean being able to work on three things at once? Let's be real here, you can't write three different emails at once — multitasking usually means something more along the lines of rapidly switching gears from one project to another. But does multitasking actually help you get more done, or is it eating away at your actual productivity?
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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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