Reading resources for ELLs
Time for Kids is a great online news site with an emphasis on young K-6 students. Time for Kids helps ESL students by creating an optimal reading experience for young ESL learners. World, entertainment, science, health and sports are a few of the exceptional topics to choose from. There are many great visual lessons with reading, writing and communicative ESL sub-skills.
- The New York Times Learning Blog is a great online news site, offering short articles to hold attention with a few questions at the end of each article to bring about emotions and thoughts on the article’s main topic. Plus, it is free!
- International Children's Digital Library has free digitized picture books in multiple languages.
Writing resources for ELLs
K/W/L Charts are a very effective tool to gage background knowledge, interests and where to start with various topics. It is an easy way to introduce a new topic. The K stands for what you know about a topic. After that list is complete, fill in the W column with what you want to know about the same topic. The third column gets filled out after you study the topic. The L represents what you learned about that topic.
- Starfall is a great early-literacy practice for English Language Learners. There are many writing activites as well as vocabulary, reading and phonics interactive activites.
Speaking resources for ELLs
- Great authentic content to stimulate English learner's conversation on FluentU, an online immersion platform that takes real-world videos—like music videos, movie trailers, news and inspiring talks—and turns them into personalized language learning lessons. FluentU gets English learners speaking English by providing meaningful and level-appropriate material, both for class and engaging at-home practice, with fresh new videos being added every week!
- Blabberize allows you to upload an image, have the mouth’s image move in a comedic way, and then “speak” your voice. You can use your own photos, or a famous person, cartoon character, etc.
- The Art of Storytelling is a site from the Delaware Art Museum that allows you pick a painting, write a short story about it, record it with your computer microphone, and email the url address for posting on a student website or blog. It’s extraordinarily simple, and extraordinarily accessible to any level of English Language Learner. No registration is required.
Listening resources for ELLs
- Listen and Read Alongs audio books are great because ELLs can follow along with the text while listening. This way they can familiarize themselves with the sounds of English. There are many sites that offer read alongs as well as most libraries. One great free site is Digital Book.
Songs tell stories and for many it is easier to remember facts if they are sung to a song. While listening to a song, try to pick out the problem that singer is singing about—such as a break up, death, love, challenges, etc. Try “Heartbreak Hotel,” or “Hello” . After listening to the song, discuss why the musician wrote the song and what emotions they were feeling. Then come up with some advice for the person’s problem.
- English Class 101 Podcast is a way to learn English in an engaging, fast and fun way.
- ESL Vocabulary Games has all different levels of fun and engaging games to help the English language learner with vocabulary and listening memory games.
Instructional Strategies for ELLs
ELL Family Resources
- Parents and caregivers are critically important in helping children learn to read. In fact, parents and caregivers are children’s first and best teachers. The Colorin Colorado Toolkit is a great resource for helping your child build confidence in the English language.
- Reading tip sheets for families are available in many languages.