Preventing Seclusion – A peek into a classroom that’s working

I have the pleasure of working part-time in a high school newcomer program.  It’s not easy to promote inclusion and prevent their being isolated, especially with newcomers who are just beginning to learn English.  When I started in this position, I learned that a group of my students are in theater class, and my role would be to provide classroom support. I have to admit, I know how shy newcomers can be, so I wondered how that was going to work.  Now, I can tell you, it doesn’t just work.  They are flourishing.

I’ve spent some time thinking about what works for the students in this class.  Why are they so different in this class?  Risk takers.

Here’s what I’ve noticed.

Classroom Culture – This class is full of students who take risks.  It’s theater.  Students know they need to adapt and adjust to be successful.  The culture of theater is group success and the students do look out for each...

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Improving MATH comprehension with anchor charts

Have you ever used anchor charts in your your math lessons? 

Visuals are a fabulous strategy to help English learners access content instruction.  You can quickly tweak your anchor chart to allow for language development during your math lesson.

Anchors charts used in a math lesson are a phenomenal way to help your English Learners:

  • know exactly what you are saying
  • what the vocabulary looks like (helping their reading and writing skills develop)
  • how they are expected to use the new vocabulary in the lesson and conversation

Beyond the benefit math anchor charts provide to your English learners, this trick will benefit all students to more fully engage in your math lesson and be a part of the group – knowing what to say and do.


When you are planning your language enhanced math anchor charts consider the following:

What vocabulary will students need to be successful?

  • When listening to you as the teacher?
  • When engaging in conversation with each...
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