Curry School of Education


How to Use

student at desk

Building on the idea of Problem-Based Learning (Levin, Hibbard and Rock, 2002), with each scenario you will encounter challenges that teachers may face when working with English Language Learners.

  1. Read the introduction
  2. Watch the video
  3. Answer the questions
  4. Compare your responses to how our experts answered


Scenario 1: Trying to Communicate


Going to a new school is never easy. Newcomers to the US with limited English proficiency face daunting challenges not only in terms of school socialization, but also academic participation. In this video, Victoria describes her experiences when still learning English:


Q1. After seeing Victoria describe her early experiences, what suggestions would you make to help improve communication with students who are just beginning to learn English?

Q2. A newcomer to English is also likely to be a newcomer to the culture. Students go through stages of cultural adjustment just as they develop second language proficiency. What might teachers expect?