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The collaborative role of an ESL support teacher in a secondary school : supporting ESL students and… Konnert, Michele Rand 2001

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The Collaborative Role of an ESL Support Teacher in Secondary School: Supporting ESL Students and Content Teachers Utilizing Integrated Language and Content Instruction by Michele Rand Konnert B.A. (Highest Honours), University of Texas at Austin, 1993 P.D.P. (Professional Development Program), Simon Fraser University, 1994 A THESIS SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF MASTER OF ARTS i n THE FACULTY OF GRADUATE STUDIES DEPARTMENT OF LANGUAGE AND LITERACY EDUCATION We accept this thesis as conforming to the required standard THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA DECEMBER 2000 (g) Michele Rand Konnert, 2000 UBC Special Collections - Thesis Authorisation Form http://www.library.ubc.ca/spcoll/thesauth.html In presenting t h i s thesis i n p a r t i a l f u l f i l m e n t of the requirements for an advanced degree at the University of B r i t i s h Columbia, I agree that the Library s h a l l make i t f r e e l y a v a i l a b l e for reference and study. I further agree that permission for extensive copying of t h i s thesis for scholarly purposes may be granted by the head of my department or by his or her representatives. It i s understood that copying or p u b l i c a t i o n of t h i s thesis for f i n a n c i a l gain s h a l l not be allowed without my written permission. Department The U n i v e r s i t y of B r i t i s h Columbia Vancouver, Canada 1 of 1 12/19/00 4:03 PM i i A b s t r a c t The purpose of this action research study was first to define the role of an English as a second language (ESL) support teacher and to evaluate the effectiveness of this collaborative support role as perceived by myself, my administrators, my colleagues, and the E S L students. Second, in order to investigate my E S L support role, I developed a model for integrating language and content in English classrooms called Literature Through the Knowledge Framework (LTKF) , and sought to assess its results. In the process of my research study I discovered more than intended. Therefore, I investigated the tension in perceptions of the E S L support role within my school community, challenges or issues for both content teachers and E S L students in mainstream courses, and my dual role as a support teacher and researcher. Lastly, I discussed improvements and made recommendations for E S L support programs. The intent of this paper was to inform and make recommendations to school districts, administrators, E S L support specialists, and content teachers for the benefit of E S L learners in secondary schools. In addition, it sought to influence the Ministry of Education in British Columbia for further funding of E S L support programs in the Province. Furthermore, I hoped that this study would lead to further understandings in the field of Teaching English as a Second or Other Language (TESOL) and improvements in E S L support programs in secondary schools in British Columbia, an area which as of yet not been researched. The results of this project would fill this gap. I felt there was a need for an effective model for E S L support for my school, the school district, and the Ministry of Education in B.C. This study was also conducted to provide a significant pedagogical implication to social studies and English teachers by showing the effectiveness of integrating language and content (ILC) to enable E S L student learners to succeed in their mainstream content classes. In addition, the results of this project might be used as a model for further research in areas of E S L support programs and ILC instruction. I l l This research project was conducted with social studies and English teachers and E S L students in mainstream classes at a secondary school in Richmond, B .C. over a seven-month period from September 1998 to March 1999. As an action researcher, I solved problems through team work and through following a cyclical process of 1. strategic planning, 2. action, 3. observation, evaluation and self-evaluation, and 4. critical and self-critical reflection on the cycle (McNiff, Lomax, & Whitehead, 1996). The findings included in this study are a definition of the E S L support role, effectiveness of the E S L support program, teacher collaboration, application of the ILC approach and the Knowledge Framework (Mohan, 1986), challenges and issues for content teachers and E S L students, and the dual role as support teacher and researcher. First, with regard to a definition of the E S L support role, E S L support teachers were viewed by myself and the administration as language development specialists who act as consultants, with a focus on co-teaching and individual instruction. Colleagues perceived the E S L support team as E S L trained teachers who must prove their effectiveness through action, rather than words, in content teachers' classrooms. E S L students viewed the E S L support teachers as a welcome support or unwelcome intruders. Second, with regard to the effectiveness of the ESL support program, the administration and I felt that the program provided exceptional support services to content teachers and E S L students. E S L students also felt that the E S L support program was very helpful. Colleagues, however, were initially skeptical of the program, but eventually valued the support. Third, collaboration increased over time as E S L support specialists worked in cooperative relationships with content teachers. Fourth, the ILC approach was selectively, and at times superficially, implemented in content courses. Also, the Knowledge Framework was the most successful teaching method for E S L support of content teachers and E S L students. Fifth, there were many challenges for content teachers, E S L learners, and E S L support specialists. One challenge was the lack of i v English spoken by our student population. Another concern was the appearance of passivity of E S L students. Also, assessment and evaluation of E S L students was very difficult for content teachers. Thus, content instructors needed to learn alternate assessment and evaluation strategies for their E S L learners. In addition, teachers wondered about their E S L students' comprehension and exam preparation. Lastly, tensions inevitably arose from the dual role as teacher and researcher. V TABLE OF CONTENTS A B S T R A C T i i T A B L E OF CONTENTS v A C K N O W L E D G E M E N T S ix Chapter 1 INTRODUCTION 1 1.1 Background to the Problem 1 1.1.1 E S L Student Concerns 2 1.1.2 E S L Support Teacher Concerns 3 1.2 Integrated Language and Content Approach 4 1.2.1 One Model of ILC Instruction: The Knowledge Framework....5 1.3 Genre-based Approach 7 1.4 Teacher Collaboration 7 1.5 Research Questions 8 1.6 Definition of Terms 9 1.7 Significance of the Study 10 1.8 Organization of the Thesis 10 Chapter 2 REVIEW OF L I T E R A T U R E 12 2.1 ESL Support Programs, Models ans Roles 12 2.2 E S L and Content Teacher Collaboration 23 2.3 Interaction Between Content Teachers and E S L Students 30 2.4 Dual Role as Teacher and Researcher 31 2.5 Action Research 34 2.6 ILC or Content-Based Instruction 35 2.6.1 C A L L A (Cognitive Academic Language Learning Approach)36 2.6.2 Social vs. Academic Language Needs: BICS and C A L P 37 2.6.3 The Knowledge Framework 3 8 2.7 Background Knowledge and Schema Theory 40 2.8 Learning Strategy Instruction 41 2.9 Genre-based Approach 41 2.10 Literature-based Second Language Instruction 44 2.11 Assessment and Evaluation of ESL Students 49 v i Chapter 3 M E T H O D O L O G Y 53 3.1 Research Methodology 53 3.2 Context for the Study 54 3.2.1 School Site 54 3.2.2 School Culture: Teachers and Students 55 3.2.3 E S L Department: Programming of E S L Students 56 3.3 Time 57 3.4 Procedures 58 3.5 Participants 59 3.5.1 Myself and Educational Philosophy 59 3.5.2 The English Department 61 3.5.3 English as a Second Language Students: Level Five 62 3.6 Method of Analysis 73 Chapter 4 C O N D U C T OF T H E STUDY 76 4.1 Beginnings: Development of the E S L Support Progam 76 4.2 Administrative Support 76 4.3 Initial Planning 77 4.4 Publicity 78 4.5 Raising Awareness 79 4.6 Providing E S L Support .79 4.7 E S L Support of the Social Studies Department 80 4.8 E S L Support of the English Department 83 4.8.1 Development of the Literature Through the Knowledge Framework Unit 87 4.9 E S L Support of the ESL Department 90 Chapter 5 OBSERVATIONS 92 5.1 E S L Support Role Defined 92 5.1.1 As Perceived by Self 92 5.1.2 As Perceived by Administrators 93 5.1.3 As Perceived by Colleagues 93 5.1.4 As Perceived by ESL Level 5 Students 94 5.1.5 Tension in Perceptions 95 5.2 E S L Support Effectiveness 96 5.2.1 As Perceived by Self 96 5.2.2 As Perceived by Administrators 96 v i i 5.2.3 As Perceived by Colleagues 97 5.2.4 As Perceived by ESL Level 5 Students 98 5.3 Teacher Collaboration/ Interaction 99 5.4 Application of the Integrated Language and Content Approach 101 5.4.1 My Agenda: The Knowledge Framework 102 5.5 Challenges and Issues 105 5.5.1 Content Teachers 105 5.5.1.1 English-only Language Policy 105 5.5.1.2 E S L Student Passivity 105 5.5.1.3 Assessment and Evaluation 106 5.5.1.4 Teaching E S L Students 107 5.5.1.5 English Teachers 107 5.5.1.6 E S L Program 108 5.5.1.7 English Educational Facilitators: 109 5.5.2 ESL Level 5 Students 109 5.5.2.1 English Courses 109 5.5.2.2 English Courses 110 5.5.2.3 Challenges Faced in E S L and English Courses. 110 5.5.2.4 Most Beneficial Experiences in E S L for Transition into English Courses 112 5.5.2.5 Most Beneficial Experiences in English Courses 113 5.6 Unique Role as a Support Teacher and Researcher 113 Chapter 6 DISCUSSION 116 6.1 ESL Support Role Defined 116 6.2 E S L Support Effectiveness 117 6.3 Teacher Collaboration 117 6.4 Application of the ILC Approach 119 6.5 Challenges and Issues Faced by Content Teachers 119 6.6 Challenges and Issues Faced by E S L Level 5 Students 120 6.7 Challenges and Issues Faced by E S L Support Teachers 120 6.8 Unique Role as a Support Teacher and Researcher 121 6.9 Improvements for ESL Support 121 6.10 Recommendations for E S L Support 123 6.11 For Further Research 125 v i i i References 126 Appendix A QUESTIONNAIRES 134 Appendix B INTERVIEW QUESTIONS 137 Appendix C RICHMOND SCHOOL DISTRICT #38 GRADES/PERCENTAGES 139 Appendix D GRAPHIC OF ESL STUDENT PARTICIPANTS 140 Appendix E ESL SUPPORT GUIDE FOR TEACHERS 146 Appendix F LITERATURE THROUGH THE K N O W L E D G E F R A M E W O R K UNIT 155 I X ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS I would like to acknowledge and thank the many people who supported me in completing this thesis. First, I would like to thank my advisor, Dr. Gloria Tang, who was always encouraging as she provided valuable counsel. Second, I deeply appreciate the support and sacrifices made by my husband, Andrew, who has been my constant source of levity and strength. Third, I would like to thank my parents, parents-in-law, and sisters for their loving care of my newborn son, William. Their help was essential for the completion of this project. Fourth, I am very thankful to the administrators, teachers and students at my school who generously agreed to participate in this study. Lastly, I would like to dedicate this thesis to my son, William, who inspired the completion of this project. 1 Chapter 1 INTRODUCTION The purpose of this study was to discover and discuss the role of an ESL support specialist collaborating with content instructors while utilizing the integrated language and content approach. The intent of this paper is to inform and make recommendations to school districts, administrators, English as a second language (ESL) support specialists, and content teachers for the benefit of E S L learners in secondary schools. In addition, it seeks to influence the Ministry of Education in British Columbia for further funding of E S L support programs in the Province. 1.1 Background to the Problem As an E S L specialist and social studies teacher at a secondary school in Richmond, British Columbia, I was faced with the challenges of meeting the increasing needs of E S L students and content teachers who struggled to learn and teach in classrooms with varying levels of language proficiency. Fortunately, the B.C. Ministry of Education, aware of these difficulties, took the initiative in 1998 to provide funding for E S L students once they were main-streamed. These mainstreamed students were called E S L level five students and were entitled to support from the school's E S L support team. Thus, in 1998 I was chosen along with two other language specialists to develop an E S L support program for the E S L level five students in our secondary school. Through collaboration with content teachers, our E S L support team provided language support services for teachers and E S L students and developed instructional models where language and content were integrated. Our vision for E S L support in our school was fortunately shared by our administration, many teachers and E S L students. It was this vision that I decided to investigate for my research study. 1.1.1 ESL Student Concerns Along with these E S L concerns in our secondary school, our school was in the 2 process of investigating concerns for the entire student population in the years 1998 to 1999. This investigation was done in response to the Ministry of Education's pending accreditation of our school in 1999. This meant that we had two years to gather evidence to prove we were attaining our goals based on our values for our school. As part of the accreditation process, our school conducted a focus group study of parents, teachers, and students in 1998. I was involved in several focus groups to identify if our students and parents felt the school was reaching its core values. Of particular interest to my research study were the results from two E S L focus groups. A Vancouver principal facilitated both E S L group discussions and used the results for a published research study and newspaper article. Her conclusions, based on interviews with nineteen of the school's 453 E S L students, shaped the direction of my research study. The results were published in a local newspaper in June 1999. The headline stated, "Study shows E S L students have concerns...School officials say they are working to address problems new immigrants encounter" (Howell, 1999, p. 3) The results of these E S L focus groups triggered my research questions. Furthermore, in the local newspaper article in which the Vancouver principal's focus group study results were published, the introduction stated that, "increasing E S L students' sense of belonging at [this secondary school] and improving their relationships with teachers should be a priority at the school, a new school district study says" (Howell, 1999, p. 3). The article went on to say that these issues had been an ongoing concern in most Richmond schools and one that school board officials had been studying since thousands of E S L students began to arrive in Richmond in the the early 1990's. School board statistics showed that 170 E S L students were registered in Richmond schools in 1986. As of September 1998, Richmond schools had an E S L population of 9,990. In other words, according to Lynn Owens-Whalen, president of the Richmond Teachers' Association, "every teacher in the district has had to become an E S L teacher, even though many have limited or no training in that area" (Howell, 1999, p. 3). 3 Therefore, one purpose of my study was to help content teachers, especially in the English department, become ESL teachers. Thus, I promoted the integrated language and content approach, especially the Knowledge Framework (Mohan, 1986) with content teachers and their ESL learners. I even designed a Knowledge Framework unit (Literature Through the Knowledge Framework) which utilized literature for the English courses (see Appendix F). 1.1.2 ESL Support Teacher Concerns In addition, two meetings with ESL support teachers in my school district affected the design of my research study. The first meeting was in November 1998 with a former ESL colleague of mine who was also involved with ESL support at her high school in Richmond. Each school seemed to interpret the role of ESL support in a different manner and develop a program which best met the needs of that school. We met and discussed the similarities and differences between our programs, our challenges and our successes. It was very interesting to hear what had been happening at another secondary school. For example, both of our schools were struggling with getting access into teachers' classrooms to meet with ESL students. We both wanted to have more teacher interaction or even team-teaching, but teachers seemed to want us to work with the students more than themselves. We felt that teacher-interaction could not be forced, but would result or evolve from being in a classroom and making contact with both students and teachers. In addition, I was fortunate to attend two district-organized networking meetings in 1999 for ESL support teachers in Richmond. The issues and challenges that surfaced included the following: 1. the staff at our schools seemed confused about our roles as ESL support teachers and needed clarification of our job description by the school administration; 2. scheduling our services for teachers within a fairly rigid timetable had been a challenge. Some teachers and students did not receive consistent service because the ESL support teacher was not available in that particular block of time, or our services had been extremely stretched because of the 4 enormous number of students entitled to support and the smal l amount of time given to the E S L support teacher to meet the students' needs; 3. our goal was to implement co-teaching models in our schools, but this was a challenge due to differences in teaching philosophies and approaches. There was no planning time, and it was a new model for teaching. The support teacher may not be famil iar wi th the content of the course, and the transferability of skills/strategies to the c lassroom teacher may be too great a task; 4. the assessment of E S L student needs was difficult due to many factors such as l imited time spent with each student and many E S L students seemed to have learning diff icul t ies . A l s o , E S L support teachers were f inding that there were many more issues/needs than in i t ia l ly appeared when helping the E S L students. 1.2 Integrated Language and Content A p p r o a c h In recent years, numerous scholars have discussed the merits of integrated language and content instruction ( I L C ) for the teaching of foreign languages Chamot & O ' M a l l e y , 1987; Harper & Piatt, 1998; Mohan, 1986; Snow, Me t & Genesee, 1989; Tang 1989, 1992a, 1992b, 1993, 1994). The goal of I L C instruction is to develop s igni f icant levels of language p rof ic iency through exper ien t ia l l ea rn ing in content-areas (Teemant, Bernhardt, and Rodr iguez -Munoz , 1996). The practice and rationale of content-based language instruction has reached many schools in Vancouver and the Lower Main land (Tang, 1994). In some schools I L C has become the basis for col laborat ion between E S L and mainstream teachers (Tang, 1994). One of the assumptions unde r ly ing the need for in tegra t ing language and content is the d i s t inc t ion made between language used for soc ia l in teract ion and language used for academic purposes (Cummins , 1980). C u m m i n s (1984) proposed a theoret ical model d i s t ingu ish ing between two basic types of language prof ic ienc ies . Bas ic Interpersonal Communica t ion S k i l l s ( B I C S ) are language sk i l l s needed for social conversa t ion purposes, whereas C o g n i t i v e A c a d e m i c Language P r o f i c i e n c y ( C A L P ) refers to formal language sk i l l s used for academic learning. Research shows that students may demonstrate B I C S in a second language wi th in two years (Cummins , 5 1980b; 1982a. & b.), however, the ability to demonstrate C A L P may take five to seven years (Cummins, 1981) to become fluent enough to compete with native speakers in academic settings. This need by E S L learners for substantial time and educational support to develop their English skills for academic purposes, was also addressed by Teemant, Bernhardt, and Rodriguez-Munoz (1996). They discussed the frustration for teachers teaching E S L students. Although content-area educators understand that if E S L students wait for integration into content classes, it could mean academic disaster, the teachers nevertheless are frustrated with this rationale. Can some of this frustration be lessened by E S L specialists supporting content-area teachers? This was a question my research study sought to answer. Another assumption underlying the ILC approach is the importance of context and background knowledge for comprehension (Hadley, 1993). To increase comprehension and retention of new information, a student's background knowledge or schemata (Carrell & Eisterhold, 1988) needs to be activated by the use of advance organizers, key visuals/graphics or other types of contextual support in language comprehension. 1.2.1 One Model of ILC Instruction: The Knowledge Framework Since many content teachers in my secondary school had expressed difficulties in teaching subject matter to E S L students, they needed knowledge of how to integrate their curriculum with second language development. The model of ILC instruction chosen for our E S L support program was the Knowledge Framework (Mohan, 1986). The Knowledge Framework approach, which supports the integration of language and subject content and involves cognitive or thinking skills development using graphics, makes a smoother transition and integration into regular classes possible for E S L students (Tang, 1992a, 1992b, 1993, 1994). This language and content approach also provides an alternate way for learning content in order to increase E S L students' chances for educational success and equality with 6 first language learners. The Knowledge Framework (1986) is one approach to integrating language and content. This framework integrates the teaching and learning of subject content, thinking skills, academic language, and key visuals/graphics within the context of an activity or task. In other words, the Knowledge Framework (1986) focuses on visually presenting content with minimal language, and then teaching the language needed to express the content after comprehension of the content matter is reached. The thinking skills, language items, and key visuals are organized into six knowledge structures (KSs) - classification, description, principles, sequence, evaluation, and choice. This organizing framework has two levels. The first level, theoretical knowledge, also called background knowledge, includes the three knowledge structures - classification, principles, and evaluation. The second level, practical activities, also called action situations, includes another three knowledge structures -description, sequence, and choice. The Knowledge Framework (1986) is an organizational tool to aid students and teachers to see the KSs. An awareness of these KSs enables students to access a higher level of material than their linguistic ability would normally allow. In addition, key visuals/graphics, based on the Knowledge Framework (1986) are a technique to prepare and support students to read content, e.g., literature (Early, Mohan & Hooper, 1989; Reinking, 1986). Key visuals lower the linguistic demands for E S L students by using graphic representations of the text or knowledge structure. They also both organize and simplify the content. To introduce content and activate the student's prior knowledge on a topic, the use of Mohan's (1986) key visuals as a prereading strategy is very effective (Early and Tang, 1991). These graphics are used across the curriculum, since the six KSs are fundamental across the curriculum. These key visuals facilitated my secondary E S L students' reading and comprehension of content. In conclusion, these key visuals are an effective learning strategy that allowed for the integration of formal aspects of language with 7 content learning. 1.3 Genre-Based Approach Along with promoting the Knowledge Framework (Mohan, 1986) approach to integrating language and content, I encouraged teachers to learn and teach a genre-based approach for reading and writing activities. The Knowledge Framework approach (1986) to the discourse of academic text led to the development of genre structures that could be learned in reading and writing activities. It is important that the genre structures underlying much of academic discourse be made aware to students, and that they are the focus of direct instruction. Martin (1989) suggested that there are a number of general patterns for text structuring such as recount, procedure, description, report, explanation, and judgment. The practical applications of this approach are presented in a set of instructional texts by Derewianka (1990). Derewianka (1990) identified six common genre structures in her explanation of how texts are organised: recounts, instructions, information reports, explanation, arguments, and narratives. The genre-based approach to the teaching of reading and writing involves explicit teaching of the top-level theoretical organisation of text discourse (Derewianka, 1990). It is text-based and starts with the analysis of the text structure and identifies language features (see Appendix F). It accounts for the difference between texts and varies with situational contexts. In contrast, KSs are situational-based, start with an analysis of the situation, account for similarities between texts and identify elements constant across texts and contexts. The two approaches are complementary and thus I recommend both to be integrated in one's teaching practice. 1.4 Teacher Collaboration Since research consistently has shown that teaching language in isolation is inefficient, collaboration between ESL and mainstream teachers for the purpose of integrating content with language aims seems to be a practical solution. The 8 necessity for collaboration between E S L and mainstream teachers has recently been researched (Hurren, 1994; Low & Mohan 1995; Tang 1994). Through E S L support, I was able to explore the possibilities of fuller integration of the Knowledge Framework (1986) into various curriculums and teach others how to do the same. I promoted the Knowledge Framework as the basis for collaboration among E S L and mainstream teachers. 1.5 Research Questions The purpose of this study was to enhance the role and effectiveness of E S L support and improve collaboration between E S L support and content teachers in a school setting. More specifically, it was designed to address the following questions. 1. What is the role of an ESL support specialist as perceived by myself, my administration, my colleagues, and the E S L students? 2. What is considered effective E S L support as perceived by myself, my administration, my colleagues, and the E S L students? 3. How can E S L and content teacher collaboration be improved in the classroom setting? 4. Is Integrated Language and Content instruction an effective tool for affecting E S L and content teacher collaboration? 5. What are the challenges and issues faced by social studies and English teachers and E S L students? 6. What are the tensions in being both an E S L support teacher and researcher? This research study investigated the role of an E S L support teacher working in the secondary school context. The school context and support position are unique due to the recent creation of E S L support programs for mainstreamed E S L students. There 9 has been research in the area of teacher collaboration between ESL specialists and content teachers based on integrated language and content instruction (Clarke, Davis, & Rhodes, 1998; Davidson, 1992; Nunan, 1992; Sagliano & Greenfield, 1998; Tang, 1994; Teemant, Bernhardt, & Rodriguez-Munoz, 1996), but this past research did not address the scope of my ESL support position, its role definitions or the effectiveness of the support program and the ILC model. My research project employed qualitative data-collection techniques within the context of an action research study. In particular, I used journal records of observations, interviews, and questionnaires, and relevant documents from the participants. I described, interpreted, and explained events with the intent to change them for the betterment of the participants. I followed a cyclical process called the action research cycle which includes 1. strategic planning, 2. action, 3. observation, and 4. critical and self-critical reflection on the cycle (Mcniff, Lomax, & Whitehead, 1996). 1.6 Definition of Terms To clarify terms in this research study, definitions are provided in the following paragraph. First, the ESL support team includes ESL specialists who support ESL students and their teachers in mainstream classes. ESL support teachers provide in class and pull-out language support services for ESL level five students. The language support services include writing, reading, and oral strategies for ESL students and their teachers. These learning strategies integrate language with the content of the classroom. Workshops, seminars, meetings, and data collection on students are provided for content teachers seeking language support services for their ESL students. Second, ESL students are those who speak English as their second language and this may interfere with their academic success at school. They receive special funding from the B.C. Ministry of Education. ESL level five students, as defined by the B.C. Ministry of Education, are no longer in an ESL class, but are in a regular 10 English class and receive support in their mainstream classes from the E S L support team. Third, ESL junior students are those in grades eight and nine and E S L senior students are those in grades ten to twelve. Fourth, mainstream or content classes are not designated E S L classes and are for the general population of English-speaking students. 1.7 Significance of the Study I hoped that this action research study would lead to further understandings in the field of Teaching English as a Second or Other Language (TESOL) and improvements in E S L support programs in secondary schools in British Columbia, an area which as of yet not been researched. The results of this project would fill this gap. I felt there was a need for an effective model for E S L support for my school, the school district, and the Ministry of Education in B.C. This study was also conducted to provide a significant pedagogical implication to social studies and English teachers by showing the effectiveness of integrating language and content to enable E S L student learners to succeed in their mainstream content classes. In addition, the results of this project might be used as a model for further research in areas of E S L support programs and ILC instruction. 1.8 Organisation of the Thesis This thesis is organised as follows. The first chapter provides an overview of the research project, a rationale for chosen methods of instruction, and a summary of the research purpose, terms, and significance. The second chapter reviews selected literature within the areas of E S L support programs, teacher collaboration, teacher and student interaction, the dual role of teacher and researcher, action research, ILC, learning strategy, genre-based and literature-based instruction, and assessment and evaluation of second language learners. The third chapter discusses the methodology chosen for the research study. The fourth chapter describes the E S L support of the social studies, English, and E S L departments. The fifth chapter identifies six observations which have arisen from the data. Finally, the sixth 11 chapter discusses conclusions from the research observations, improvements and recommendations for E S L support programs, and suggestions for further research in the field of T E S O L . 12 Chapter 2 REVIEW OF LITERATURE In the process of developing the ESL support program and the design of my research study, I read the most recent literature related to ESL support models and teacher collaboration. In addition, I read the current research on action research, teacher researchers, Integrated Language and Content (ILC) instruction, genre-based and literature-based approaches to second language acquisition, and alternate assessment and evaluation practices for ESL learners. Because this document is meant for ESL and content teachers, program designers, school administrators, and members of the Ministry of Education who may not be familiar with these topics, I have chosen to include a more detailed review of selected studies which are connected to the topic but which may not be directly relevant to the study. The literature included has shaped my understanding of the research questions. It also provides the theoretical principles and rationale for the research methodology and teaching methods chosen for this project. 2.1 ESL Support Programs, Models, and Roles First of all, McGivern & Eddy's (1999) study of ESL support programs in Vancouver, B.C. provided examples of models that could be applied to my teaching context. According to McGivern and Eddy (1999), ESL support programs in Vancouver, B.C. had grown in response to the increased number of ESL students arriving in the Lower Mainland region since the 1990's. In fact, 90% of all new arrivals chose to settle in the Lower Mainland region of B.C. in 1997-1998 (Fowler & Hooper, 1998). McGivern and Eddy (1999) examined the language support programs in the Vancouver school district. First of all, language support services vary from school to school, depending on several factors such as finances and adequate staffing. Second, principles espoused by the school district to meet the needs of ESL students are not always practised in the classroom. Third, there are several different models of language support used in the schools. 13 The Vancouver school board chose to offer several models of language support rather than one model over another. The following models (adapted from the E S L District Office, Vancouver School Board, 1996) comprise the system of language support services within the school district. The first model, reception model, is for students with minimal English proficiency who require intensive language and cultural immersion. These E S L students are placed with a group of twenty E S L students in a fully supported E S L class, where they spend most or all of their time becoming socially and academically prepared for integration into mainstream, grade-level courses. Another option for these students is placement in a group of fewer than twenty students, where they would receive full-time support from English language support teachers in mainstream content courses or from trained E S L teachers in pullout sessions at the English Language Centre' (ELC), which is a classroom located in the school. The second model is called the transition model which is designed for students who can cope with the content within many regular classes, but need additional concentrated language and cultural support. This support is provided in one of three ways: 1. a combination of E S L classes (50%) and subject/grade classes (50%) taught by English language support teachers or by subject/grade teachers with support from English language support teachers; 2. English Language Centre pullout sessions, with the option of attending transitional classes taught by subject-ESL teachers. E S L support will also occur in subject/grade classes from the English language support teacher and/or the classroom teacher; 3. subject/grade classes with some support from the English language support teacher and/or the subject/grade teacher. The third model, the integration model, is designed for E S L students who need minimal support in their mainstream classes. Support is provided by the subject/grade teachers who in turn receive support from the English language support teacher. Unfortunately, there is a time limit or cap on the length of these E S L services. 14 The Ministry of Education in British Columbia recently established a five year cap on E S L services. For the most part, this five year cap is unrealistic for ESL students and creates frustration for both teachers and students. Research among immigrant children taught in English-only programs indicates that these students need four to ten years of language support to catch up with native speakers (Collier, 1987; Cummins, 1984). Data from a study in California indicated that even longer periods (an average of ten years) are necessary (Ramirez, 1992). In conclusion, McGivern and Eddy (1999) both question the policy decisions made in our province which seem to not take into account the latest research on second language acquisition. There is not enough time provided to E S L students for them to acquire adequate proficiency in the English language to succeed in their academic courses. Furthermore, E S L students may be doomed to academic failure. Also, the trend to exit students too soon into the mainstream or to impose a cap on ESL services may establish a false sense of academic ability (McGivern & Eddy, 1999). Furthermore, Dwyer's (1998) research greatly influenced the program development model for the E S L support program in our secondary school. She examined both the creating and sustaining of change for immigrant learners in two secondary schools, and staff development programs in New York state, U.S.A., aimed at improving achievement levels for language minority students. She identified general factors that lead to positive and lasting change to meet the needs and realities of language minority learners. Dwyer (1998) discussed the disparity that exists for language minority students in the secondary schools in a small city school district in New York state. These students are under represented in higher levels of content area instruction, and clustered in mainstream content classes in instructional ability groups that their E S L teachers and their parents believe are below their ability levels. As a group, these students score considerably lower than other students on all standardized achievement tests. Along with being clustered in the lowest levels of instruction, 15 they also have higher high school dropout rates than other student groups. Dwyer (1998) commented that at the secondary school level, low-track placement results in curriculum differentiation because those in low-track classes may never study many of the same topics that those in high-track classes do. Similar to my teaching context, Dwyer (1998) stated that although this school district had a fairly constant population of language minority students for many years, there had been no systematic effort to improve the skills of mainstream teachers in supporting the learners in their content area studies. This situation showed a belief that the education of immigrant learners was largely the domain and responsibility of E S L instructors. To respond to these realities, the district submitted a proposal for a grant to improve the access to higher-quality education and academic achievement levels for language minority students. Dwyer (1998) noted that the most profound lesson she learned from this project related to the process of change, as opposed to the educational innovations designed to address the problem of low student achievement. She found that it was not enough to plan a technically sound innovation. "For the innovation to become embedded in the institution, careful attention to the management of the change process was needed; otherwise, fragmentation and erosion would result" (p. 7). She used the framework of Fullan and Steigelbauer (1991) to examine her innovation through the three major phases of the change process - initiation, implementation, and institutionalization. Dwyer (1998) believed that the achievement of language minority students could be improved if the quality of their instruction could be enhanced though a professional development project for science and math teachers in particular. She sought to create a staff development model that was "context sensitive, knowledge-based, purposeful, well-articulated, ongoing, continuous and reflective" (Griffin, 1994, p. 29). Dwyer's (1998) model contained the following features: 1. participation would be voluntary and open to all interested content teacher; 2. participants would agree to have language minority 16 students clustered in their classes, attend a series of workshops, and work with a coach on implementing strategies discussed and modelled in the workshop sessions; 3 . the design for the workshops would include some basic knowledge and skill building sessions followed by other topics chosen by participants. Similar to our E S L support model, she used a technical coaching model (Garmston, 1987), in which a teacher skilled in academically supporting language minority students would be released part-time from teaching to plan workshops and work as a coach with the participants. Furthermore, she met systematically with principals and school staff to explain the problem and ask for their support and participation. Dwyer (1998) learned two major lessons from her initiating change. First, "change efforts should target areas of strong need" in order to receive support from administration, school staff, and federal grant awards (p. 7). Second, it is extremely important to build constituencies early in the project (Sarason, 1996). Instead of a program proposed by a few E S L professionals, a program should have the support of E S L professionals, central office administrators, building principals, department heads, parents, students, and local board of education members. This degree of partnership implies a redistribution of power. In other words, Dwyer's (1998) basic lesson in initiating change was that "building a broad base of support and advocacy is as important as designing an action plan" (p. 8). Equally important for ongoing change in these settings were alterations in teacher attitude and behaviour. Her work during a three-year implementation period confirmed that change in teacher behaviour could be achieved through a staff development program with ongoing coaching and opportunities for collegial collaboration. One concern in managing change in these secondary school contexts was developing a plan to handle personnel turnover of administrators and teaching staff, and the ongoing staff development needs that this inevitably creates. In addition, difficulties in institutionalizing some aspects of the innovative changes were due in part to limited resources/funding. In other words, the basic lessons Dwyer (1998) 17 learned in implementing change were "that it is important to spread the ownership base beyond immediate participants - in our case, teachers - to include administrators and community members, and to build structures, such as provision for turnover, that promote institutionalization. In other words, "having many people in the school feel ownership for the innovation helps prevent the erosion caused by turnover" (p. 10). Also, "building structures that embed the innovation in the daily administration of schools can make it more permanent" (p. 10). In her work on staff development efforts in Chicago schools, Ogle (1992) emphasized the importance of top-down and bottom-up pressure working in tandem as a prerequisite for sustained instructional change. The results of this project were gratifying to Dwyer (1998). At the high school level, she saw a drop in enrolment of L E P students in low-track science classes, and an increase of language minority students enrolled in enriched and honours sections at middle and high school levels. With regard to E S L support programs, Harper and Piatt (1998) also investigated the topic of full inclusion for secondary school E S O L (English as a second or other language) students in the state of Florida, U.S.A. Harper and Piatt (1998) wondered if the diffusion of E S O L services into the general education setting benefited the E S O L students. The article provided an overview of inclusion as an instructional model in E S O L and recommendations for effective inclusion. Their concerns with inclusion models for ESOL students were many. First, in Florida mainstream teachers with the required E S L training were considered qualified to teach L E P (limited English proficient) students in their subject areas. As a result, school administrators were inclined to integrate all L E P students into mainstream courses instead of offering a continuum of structured language support. Harper and Piatt (1998), however, believed that inclusion programs for L E P students were appropriate when offered in conjunction with other program options. For example, E S L students with low levels of English proficiency 18 needed access to E S L instruction and sheltered content classes: Such direct language support should be provided until a student's English language proficiency and academic achievement indicated that a transition to mainstream classes is possible. Students with high levels of English proficiency and less need for direct E S O L instruction may be placed full-time in mainstream classes with teachers who have had E S O L training, (p. 31) Harper and Piatt (1998) commented that inclusive models promise, at least superficially, greater access to the standard curriculum, more contact with native-English-speaking (NS) peers, and greater opportunities to interact socially and develop academic language skills in the content areas. Reviewing past research on language acquisition and research in Florida's secondary schools, Harper and Piatt (1998) examined three assumptions underlying inclusive models for L E P students: "These assumptions are that students will have comprehensible instruction, opportunities for participation and interaction and an appropriate curriculum" (p. 31). Feedback from training, survey results, and interviews with E S O L trainers and teachers in Florida (Harper, 1995), however, indicated that secondary school L E P students were often lost in classes with NS students, and that demands on teachers' time prevented them from adapting instruction to the needs of their L E P students. . Furthermore, often L E P students were intimidated in mainstream classes and were reluctant to draw attention to themselves. Therefore, teachers who were unaware of the L E P student needs and unable to monitor their comprehension due to large class sizes, overlooked these students. Harper and Piatt (1998) also mentioned the high frustration levels for content teachers of students with low English proficiency or literacy levels: "Although teachers often adapt their instruction to a wide range of abilities in a classroom, many are unprepared or unwilling to make the changes necessary to provide comprehensible instruction for the L E P students in their content classes" (p. 32). 19 According to Silver (1997), inclusion models are difficult to implement effectively due to the lecture-oriented, teacher-centered environment of the high school. He commented that many high school teachers resist efforts to create interdisciplinary units and to use interactive teaching strategies in their content classes. Moreover, the assumption that full inclusion for L E P students provided greater access to the mainstream academic curriculum than sheltered E S O L classes was questioned by Harper and Piatt (1998). During a year-long case study of four secondary school L E P students in New Hamphire, Fu (1995) noted that students and teachers were frustrated in mainstream classes for which L E P students were unprepared. In addition, Harklau (1994b) discovered that English language arts teachers in particular did not provide the type of curriculum and feedback necessary for L E P students because these teachers did not understand the different language needs between L E P and NS students. Also, English language arts teachers' inadequate knowledge of linguistics, language and literacy development left them unable to effectively address the nonnative grammar problems common to L E P students. Likewise, in a case study of an L E P student in a Florida middle school Copenhaver (1995) found that although the student's teachers had received required E S O L training, they rarely adapted their instruction for him. In order for L E P students to be successful in inclusion settings, Harper and Piatt (1998) stated that teachers must be highly skilled in the following areas: 1. use their students' linguistic and cultural differences effectively in the classroom; 2. structure groups and tasks that promote active learning and focused interaction; 3. monitor their L E P students' language development and academic achievement; 4. know how to modify their own language use, teaching strategies, and materials in their content classrooms, (p. 34) Furthermore, they noted that "varying question types according to language level, increasing wait time for answers, developing students' background knowledge, using 20 visuals, peer teaching, and cooperative learning are techniques that can help L E P students in large, mixed-level classes" (p. 34). Also, positive teacher attitudes were critical to the success of any instructional program that Harper and Piatt (1998) researched. In a study of effective schools for secondary school E S O L students, Lucas, Henze, and Donato (1990) found that the most successful teachers were those who "valued their students' languages and cultures, held high expectations and standards for them, and had an active commitment to their success" (p. 34). To conclude, Harper and Piatt (1998) had two primary concerns with the implementation of full inclusion for L E P students in secondary schools. First, "because a full inclusion model may not adequately serve all learners, it is important that full inclusion not preempt other instructional programs that appear to be effectively serving their intended purpose" (p. 35). In other words, full inclusion should be one alternative for L E P students and be appropriate to a school's changing needs. Second, "we do not assume that the regular classroom provides a naturally superior environment for language learners" (p. 35). The setting in which a student is placed is less important than the nature of instruction within it. Harper and Piatt (1998) state that "it is therefore imperative that E S O L professionals and general educators work together as informed, equal partners toward common goals" (p. 35). In addition, Roessingh (1999) studied another model for E S L support for secondary school students in Alberta, Canada. She investigated the success of adjunct support programs for E S L learners in mainstream English classes. Most of the E S L students in her study, as most of the new immigrants to Alberta, were from Hong Kong and spoke Cantonese. She stated that E S L was fast becoming the mainstream in the major urban centers of Canada. Thus, "the time has arrived to revisit the goals of E S L instruction as well as to develop new working relationships with our colleagues in administration, guidance, and mainstream English instruction" (p. 73). Her article established the rationale for the shift in program design. It proposed a framework 21 for developing the academic proficiency of E S L learners by creating an adjunct block of time to be used to complement mainstream English literature instruction in an urban, academically oriented secondary school. The rationale for the adjunct E S L support model was documented by Watt & Roessingh (1994, 1999) in their tracking studies of high school E S L student achievement over a ten year period. According to Watt and Roessingh (1994, 1999), successful graduation from high school remained an elusive goal for most E S L students. Also, E S L students proceed at great risk of academic failure and dropout after they exit from E S L programs and struggle in mainstream courses. Other studies in British Columbia (Eddy, 1999) mirrored these findings of E S L student drop out rates. According to Roessingh (1999), a promising response for reducing the drop out rate for E S L students would be to extend ESL support to include an adjunct component for the most linguistically demanding courses in the mainstream: the English literature courses. She stated that the focus of the planned adjunct curriculum would include three things: "English language proficiency, learning strategies, and concept understandings and background knowledge embedded in cultural information" (p. 75). She described the adjunct model as having the following components. It is an E S L course that is linked to a content area course (e.g., English literature). E S L students are enrolled in both courses concurrently and should receive credit for each. Both courses share the same amount of time, content base, and complement each other with mutually coordinated assignments (Snow & Brinton, 1988). Both the E S L and the content area instructor plan their lessons collaboratively. Furthermore, Roessingh (1999) noted that ideally the content area course is sheltered, including only E S L learners, for the following reasons: 1. genre may be studied in greater depth and less breadth; 2. students' first languages may be respected, promoted, and enhanced through structuring certain assignments; 3. the 22 . mainstream teacher becomes more aware of the unique demands of the content curriculum for E S L learners and begins to make adaptations; 4. the mainstream and E S L teachers both advocate on behalf of the E S L learners whose needs require ongoing support in the mainstream setting. In addition, the adjunct model provided two critical elements which contributed to the E S L students' success: additional time and collaborative planning between teachers. Roessingh (1999) commented that E S L students need extra time to process and develop language, to do homework, to write exams and papers, to pace their work and complete a novel study. The gap between the E S L and native speakers may narrow in time with the benefits of instructed E S L support, but as Collier (1989) noted, E S L learners will always be chasing a moving target and will take many years before E S L students can compete with NS students on an equal footing. The results from Roessingh's (1999) research study were encouraging. Al l twenty three E S L students in the adjunct class passed both their final examination and the English 10 course. Gains were reflected in both vocabulary and reading comprehension scores for all students. She commented on the importance of balancing the focus of content with language learning in order to prevent low plateau, early fossilization, failure, and dropout for E S L learners. She stated that "as E S L educators we must take the lead in establishing new working partnerships with our mainstream colleagues. Together we can be stronger in advocating on behalf of ESL learners to introduce initiatives that will level the playing field and allow these students to demonstrate more fully their real achievement" (p. 83). In summary, language support programs need to take into account the latest research on second language acquisition. Also, creating and sustaining change for immigrant learners in secondary schools and developing staff professional programs requires targeting areas of strong need and building constituencies early in the project. In addition, full inclusion for secondary school E S L students requires alternatives for students and collaboration between E S L professionals and general 23 educators. Lastly, adjunct support programs for E S L learners can be successful to complement mainstream courses in secondary school. 2.2 ESL and Content Teacher Collaboration While designing the E S L support model for my school, I reviewed the literature on E S L and content teacher collaboration. Recent research enthusiastically supports this collaborative endeavour for effective and successful E S L support programs. For example, Harper and Piatt (1998) encouraged teacher collaboration and interdisciplinary instruction as effective methods to make high school curriculum more comprehensible to L E P learners (Silver, 1997). Harper and Piatt (1998) mentioned that strategic use of an English as a second or other language (ESOL) specialist to support students and teachers in adapting curriculum and planning and delivering instruction was another component of effective E S L support inclusion models. Some problems associated with this collaborative arrangement, however, were identified. First, Harper (1995) reported that several E S O L resource teachers found that their new roles were unclear and were reluctant to approach their mainstream colleagues. Davidson (1992) provided suggestions for support and team teaching, such as frequent and regularly scheduled meetings and "starting with a receptive mainstream teacher, clearly defining each teacher's responsibilities, developing reasonable expectations, and sharing information with other teachers about successes and failures" (p. 34). Furthermore, Piatt (1992) discussed the important role of the E S O L resource teacher as a language development specialist and not merely an assistant to the content teacher. With regard to teachers' professional development needs, Milk, Mercado, and Sapiens (1992) discussed the importance of reflective team-based approaches to staff development. Furthermore, peer coaching was one method to increase implementation of new teaching techniques (Calderon & Spiegel-Coleman, 1984; Joyce & Showers, 1982; Kwiat, 1989) and encourage collegial relationships between 24 E S O L and mainstream teachers and across subject areas (Galbraith & Anstrom, 1995). Furthermore, Tang's case study (1994) of collaboration between a computers studies teacher and an E S L teacher designing and conducting a secondary school unit, showed that the Knowledge Framework is an effective tool for "effecting teacher collaboration and for enabling E S L students to systematically learn academic English, read a novel, acquire computer literacy, develop thinking skills, and socialise into the English-speaking classroom" (p. 100). These findings attest to the success of collaborative teaching of two teachers who "used the Knowledge Framework as a common metaphor for teacher collaboration" (p. 115). She noted that subject-area teachers often seem reluctant to use approaches which are perceived to be the responsibility of the English teacher (Langer & Applebee, 1987), and language teachers may not have the expertise in the content-area subject matter to teach it at the secondary level. Thus, Tang (1994) suggested that E S L and subject-area teachers should collaborate in the planning and teaching of classroom lessons. Tang's study (1994) also pointed out that the success of the collaborative teaching model in her case study was due to several factors. Both the E S L and the content teacher worked in an atmosphere of trust and mutual respect, and both were familiar with the Knowledge Framework approach to integrating language and content. These factors facilitated the dialogue between the teachers and resulted in effective collaboration. In my study I planned to introduce the Knowledge Framework as a tool for affecting collaboration between content and E S L support teachers. An ideal collaborative model of content-based English as a foreign language (EFL) instruction in the liberal arts was demonstrated by Sagliano and Greenfield (1998) while team teaching in a Japanese college. The liberal arts curriculum was the vehicle for English language development. Students were immersed in small classes, fifteen to eighteen hours each week, and taught in English using content-based instruction (CBI). Content and E F L faculty collaborated as equals in the 25 classroom. Both teachers were present in the classroom for the entire lesson, responsible for teaching content and language, and assessed and evaluated the students. This model of CBI differed from the typical theme-based, sheltered, and adjunct models of second language instruction in its educational goals and instructional format. According to Nunan (1992) and Helmer (1995), success in innovative collaborative teaching requires experienced teachers, sufficient implementation time, and administrative support. The program at this Japanese college possessed all these three elements. In this instructional setting in Japan, several common restrictions in content-based E S L / E F L classes were eliminated. First, both teachers were equals in the collaborative process of team-teaching. They both were in the classroom and responsible for teaching and grading. Second, the students had chosen to come to this English-language institution. Students were not expected to keep up with native speakers of English. Third, the administration supported experimental methodologies, with an emphasis on active and cooperative learning. In addition, the curriculum simultaneously taught content area knowledge, higher level thinking skills, and English fluency. For example, building upon students background and personal experiences (schemata) increased students' comprehension. Teachers made verbal and written material comprehensible through graphic organizers, appealed to students' different learning styles, and promoted cooperative learning and critical thinking skills. In addition, teachers developed students' aural/oral fluency, and helped students recognize and use key chapter vocabulary in speaking and writing. Furthermore, both teachers planned the lessons together. They met before and after every class to plan and assess course progress. Also, Greenfield (1998) wrote the textbook, which was designed to be intellectually challenging for students and yet accessible to them in terms of language, length, and format. Moreover, both teachers used classroom activities such as lectures with overheads, videos, discussions, graphic organizers, and the 26 textbook to facilitate content knowledge and language development. Their multidimensional learning tasks promoted simultaneous learning of content, English language skills and critical thinking abilities. The significance of Sagliano and Greenfield's (1998) study on collaborative teaching offered a full range of pedagogical possibilities for ESL/EFL and content teachers. This was more likely to be true in settings where the curriculum, textbooks, class presentations and assignments could be restructured to fit the linguistic capacities of the students. First, Sagliano and Greenfield (1998) found that active and cooperative learning improved student motivation and comprehension. Second, they discovered that a high level of conceptual sophistication could be made integral to the work even when the linguistic capacity of the students was limited. Third, the integration of teaching liberal arts subjects was compatible with a focus on the development of English fluency because language was the vehicle through which thoughts were conveyed. Both content and language could be taught together as long as both goals were honoured. Clarke, Davis, and Rhodes (1998) also studied principles of collaboration in school-university partnerships. Through their investigations they came to agree on four principles of collaboration; conversations needed to be critical, grounded, pragmatic, and attuned to scale. By critical they meant three commitments. First, all participants must come to the table as equal partners and exchanges be conducted in the spirit of democratic collaboration. Second, they held each other accountable for consistency in the service of outcomes. Third, they focused on agreed-upon outcomes. By grounded they meant that they worked from a perspective of teaching that was situated in particular settings, and anchored in the daily realities of participants. By pragmatic their goal was not to discover truth but to solve problems in the real world. They developed a critical assessment of the functional value of ideas, models, methods, and materials. By attuned to scale they meant that decisions made at different levels have different impacts and failure to take this into account 27 can have serious consequences. Furthermore, Clarke, Davis, and Rhodes (1998) noted that each person involved in educational partnerships views issues of teaching and learning with lenses crafted from their own experiences and responsibilities. To conclude, they stated that what is required in successful school-university partnerships is time, patience, and attention to important details in contexts of genuine concern for all involved. In addition, Teemant, Bernhardt, and Rodriguez-Munoz (1996) identified ten principles that E S O L educators need to address when collaborating with content-area teachers. These principles summarize what content-area teachers need to know about the E S O L students in their classes, and what strategies E S O L professionals can offer to help them. The first principle is "language and content go hand and hand" (p. 16). In other words, language and content are integrated in subject-area classes because waiting until E S O L students are fluent or sheltering them from academic work is a detriment rather than an act of support in preparing them for academic competition. Furthermore, subject-area teachers need to understand that it takes approximately six to eight years for E S O L students to become fluent enough in English to compete with native-speaker peers in an academic setting (Collier, 1987). Also, content teachers need to know that E S O L students often understand more than they can speak or write. The second principle is that "concept and language gaps require different approaches" (p. 17). In other words, it is a challenge for content teachers to determine whether a student's problem is conceptual or linguistic when they can not probe for clarification using their E S O L student's first language. Thus, E S O L teachers need to provide information about the E S O L student's cultural and academic background and language proficiency for content teachers in order to help them sort out whether problems are linguistic or conceptual in nature. The third principle is that second language learning is developmental. In other words, "although all teachers must deal with errors in students' work, content-area teachers 28 may not understand that for E S O L students these errors frequently reflect signs of learning" (p. 17). Furthermore, if content teachers understand that there are stages of development in language learning, then it will help them make sense of the oral and written language E S O L students produce. The fourth principle is that "content should not be compromised or diluted" (p. 17). This means that helping E S O L students does not mean compromising content. Content teachers do not need to invest in special or different materials designed for E S O L students. It is better to utilize the materials they use every day, to the benefit of the E S O L students they teach. Moreover, the modifications that are made to the materials are elaborative adjustments, rather than simplifications (Parker & Chaudron, 1987; Widdowson, 1978). Principle number five is "linguistic adjustments make content accessible to students" (p. 18). In other words, reminding subject-area teachers that techniques such as breaking difficult ideas into manageable units, pauses during speech for students to catch up, stressing the main word of a sentence, demonstrations, or elaborations are all adjustments that make content more accessible to E S O L students. Principle number six is that "strategic use of reading and writing activities is important" (p. 18). Content teachers need to understand the difficulty of comprehension by listening and speaking for E S O L students without writing or reading supports. Teemant, Bernhardt, and Rodriquez-Munoz (1996) stated that "content-area teachers can make strategic use of reading and writing activities to support what is delivered in a listening/speaking mode" (p. 18). The seventh principle is that "grading should be fair to E S O L students" (p. 18). This means that multiple assessments are more valid for E S O L students. Combining alternate and traditional assessment practices would provide a more accurate picture of the knowledge and ability of second language learners. The eighth principle is that "affective factors influence learning" (p. 19). Teemant, Bernhardt, and Rodriquez-Munoz (1996) noted that language learning is 29 both a psychological and affective phenomenon as well as a linguistic one. Content teachers may be aware of some of the challenges E S O L students face when learning to adjust to a new culture, but teachers may be unaware of how these challenges affect language learning. For example, content teachers may misinterpret an E S O L student's silence as passivity, instead of the student's fear of correction or rejection in the classroom. Furthermore, a silent period often precedes production in language learning. Principle number nine is that "academic language should be developed as a separate skill" (p. 19). Content teachers may mistakenly equate an E S O L students conversational fluency with fluency in the language needed for academic progress. Content teachers can help E S O L students by making explicit the academic requirements specific to their fields. For example, teachers can show E S O L students what is expected in their subject by giving them samples of written work, guidelines for completing assignments, or lists of common mistakes. Principle number ten is that "cross-disciplinary collaboration is essential" (p. 19). Collaboration between content-area teachers and E S O L instructors can have great benefits for E S O L learners. There is much to be gained by sharing the responsibility for E S O L students with the broader school community of teachers who interact daily with these students. With regard to collaboration between E S O L and content-area instructors, Teemant, Bernhardt, and Rodriguez-Munoz (1996) suggested several strategies. First, they recommended clarifying teaching roles. Second, they stated that E S O L teachers need to communicate to content instructors the reasons for particular activities or strategies. Third, E S O L instructors need to emphasize the importance of integrating language and content objectives in lesson planning. Fourth, collaboration between E S O L and content-area teachers requires a balance between tenacity and diplomacy. Teemant, Bernhardt, and Rodriguez-Munoz (1996) stated that "how directly you approach collaboration depends on your school's readiness to recognize the needs of 30 E S O L students" (p. 20). They also suggested that collaboration is most effective when participation is voluntary. In addition, "information shared should be succinct, easy to assimilate, well-packaged, and conveyed in terms everyone understands" (p. 20). To conclude, they discussed how the ten principles will help encourage collaboration between E S O L and content instructors. "They represent a starting point for focused and strategic collaboration with content-area teachers who share with us the opportunity and challenge of educating E S O L student populations" (p. 20). Collaboration with content teachers was one of the focusses of my study. In the process of designing the E S L support program, I took into consideration all the above principles. 2.3 Interaction Between Content Teachers and ESL Students One aspect of our E S L support program was facilitating improved interaction between content teachers and their E S L students. Effective interaction is critical to the academic success of E S L learners. Verplaetse (1998) reported on a study that investigated how middle and high school content teachers shaped interaction opportunities of their mainstreamed E S L students. She analyzed the talk of three content teachers who were recommended for the study as very interactive and sensitive to the needs of E S L students. The findings, however, showed that all three teachers unknowingly limited the E S L students' opportunities to interact verbally. Her findings indicate an agenda for research, reflection, and professional development. Verplaetse (1998) noted that opportunities for interaction between content teachers and E S L students are critical for learning because it plays an important role in overall language development. Classroom research (Green, 1992; Schinke-Llano, 1983), however, supports the claim that E S L students interact significantly less in integrated content classrooms than do their English proficient counterparts. The studies found that content teachers use fewer questions with E S L students and talk more often with them about classroom management than content. 31 Verplaetse (1998) also found that content teachers ask their E S L students fewer high-level cognitive and open-ended questions. In addition, she discovered that teachers underestimate the E S L students' language competency. During her interviews with the E S L students, all but two exhibited the language skills needed to produce the extended, high-level cognitive thoughts. Her other major finding was that some classroom participant structures lead to greater E S L student interaction than others. In general, small group work leads to greater teacher-ESL student interaction opportunities than does full-class discussions. Furthermore, Verplaetse (1998) commented on other teacher concerns such as the amount of time it took E S L students to respond in teacher-student interactions. Teachers were concerned with the other students waiting for their attention and trying to complete a predetermined curriculum in a limited time frame. Teachers wanted to protect the E S L students from unnecessary embarrassment. Therefore, teachers completed students' answers or refrained from asking them difficult questions. Hatch (1992) referred to such teacher modifications as a "benevolent conspiracy" (p. 67). Another concern for Verplaetse (1998) was that content teachers who were unfamiliar with the stages of language development, were unaware of how long it takes for E S L students to adjust to the flow and speed of English content. She commented that until content teachers are trained in E S L teaching strategies, their concern that E S L students are lost, and their avoidance of asking frequent or difficult questions of E S L students, can be expected. In conclusion, Verplaestse (1998) noted that the consequences for teacher modifications for E S L students were "restricted opportunities to practice extended academic talk, limited opportunities to co-construct ongoing classroom knowledge, and marginalized social roles within the classroom" (p. 28). 2.4 Role as Teacher and Researcher My action research project required the dual role of support teacher and 32 researcher. This double role had many advantages such as the possibility of simultaneously achieving richer teacher understandings, improvements in practice, and the enrichment of educational theory. Along with the benefits of being both teacher and researcher, there were many tensions. Atkinson (1994) eloquently explores the tensions in the double role of being both teacher and researcher. First, as a researcher one needs to doubt or question everything and as a teacher one needs tremendous confidence and belief that one is on the right track. Second, as a teacher one needs to act, make rapid decisions, go straight for the solution, and rely on the intuitive side, but as a researcher one needs to think before acting. Third, research involves sustained concentration on a very few things, which are studied in great detail and in theoretical terms. Whereas, teaching is action on a huge number of different things, most of them fairly unconnected with each other. As teachers we flit from one thing to another -developing a 'butterfly mind'. Fourth, research requires analysing, pulling things apart, and in teaching there is a sense of synthesising. Fifth, teaching must resolve problems. It must work. Pragmatic solutions are the uppermost. Although research may be about resolving problems, much of research is also about raising questions. Sixth, research and teaching may have the same long-term goal, to improve the learning situation for the students, but the ways of attaining that goal are different. Seventh, research is painfully slow, whereas teaching is about adapting to the quick pace of changes. Researchers have time to think but the teacher wants readily usable answers now. Eighth, researchers use significantly different language from teachers and thus communication or the transfer of knowledge breaks down. Ninth, the time needed to write up the research is difficult to find for teachers with their hectic work schedules. Tenth, researchers have a different mode in which they operate which labels them as those in 'ivory towers'. Eleventh, teachers that do engage in research and are changed by this process, may be alienated from their colleagues. Despite these conflicts, Atkinson (1994) gave hope in living and acting as a teacher-researcher. She said that the tensions outlined above may not be so dominantly present where the action researcher in a school is not also the central actor. Where the research is into someone else's role, these tensions may not be so extreme. Furthermore, Crookes (1998) addressed some aspects of the relationship between research and teaching. One of his concerns with research was the presence of the academic's voice and the absence of the teacher's voice. He questioned whether teaching and research needed to be mutually exclusive and whether research in second language acquisition could become more relevant and accessible to practising teachers. One of his answers to these questions was the action research movement with its growing number of teacher-researchers who combine teaching with research, despite shortages of time and resources. Teacher-researchers close the gap between teachers and academic research which can be inaccessible or incomprehens ib le . According to Crookes (1998), the action research movement, with its concern for locally generated solutions to problems, is the "ideal vehicle to bring together such terms as "professional growth, curriculum development, course evaluation, and program self-study, and to provide increased legitimation for these aspects of teachers' work" (Crookes, 1998). The great divide between teachers and academics could be bridged by making teachers and researchers the same people and by recognizing teachers' knowledge of their students' learning as research with some of the desirable characteristics of academic L2 research. This is the position of the teacher-researcher movement. Teacher research (e.g., action research) has been advocated in E S O L by noted figures over a long period of time (Ellis, 1997; Long, 1983; Nunan, 1997; & Wallace, 1998). These days teacher research is usually qualitative research which "more closely resembles the narrative forms already used by practitioners to communicate their knowledge" (Anderson, Herr, & Nihlen, 1994, p. 20). 34 2.5 Action Research Teacher research, in particular action research, was the methodology chosen for my study. Thus, I reviewed the most recent literature on action research to guide my study. Through action research, I was able to investigate concerns that were most relevant to my teaching context. Burns and Hood (1997) coordinated a national action research project through the National Centre for English Language Teaching and Research (NCELTR) in Australia. It included twenty-eight ESL teachers from four different states in Australia. The participating teachers from each of the states formed themselves into four collaborative action research groups to investigate the general research theme from more specific perspectives, according to the concerns they felt were most relevant to their own classrooms. According to Burns (1997), the collaborative action research framework for her project became a catalyst for continuing professional growth for herself and her participating teachers. It caused them to see second language teaching and learning in a new light. One of Burns' (1997) participating teachers commented that collaborative action research helped her to question and justify all her values and theoretical principles underlying her teaching practice. According to Mcniff, Lomax, & Whitehead (1996), action research is not part of the scientific paradigm. In other words, it is not possible, nor desirable, to aim for replication or generalisation, since the aim is to understand rather than to predict, to liberate rather than control. People do research with others in order to understand and improve their social practices. People offer stories of their own improved understanding as outcomes. This shared learning leads to the construction of collective knowledge. Action research has a body of knowledge constituted of case studies. This accumulation of individual stories demonstrates a culture of collective learning (Mcniff, Lomax, & Whitehead, 1996). Furthermore, practice-centred inquiry is rooted in a valid epistemological position that asserts understanding in practical realms depends on successfully 35 fusing the three activities of acting, observing, and thinking into a single whole process. I selected program improvement as the focus for my research study. I linked the practical world of teaching with the theoretical world of how to enhance learning and with the personal world of motivation of the teacher (Chism, Sanders, & Zitlow 1987). 2.6 Integrated Language and Content Instruction or Content-Based Approach Through action research, I investigated the theoretical principles underlying my teaching practice. Specifically, I reviewed the literature on the ILC approach along with the Cognitive Academic Language Learning approach, basic interpersonal communicative proficiency, cognitive academic language proficiency, the Knowledge Framework, background knowledge, schema theory, and learning strategy instruction. On the topic of Limited English Proficient (LEP) students needing appropriate curricula, Harper and Piatt (1998) stated that integrated language and content instruction was an effective method to bridge the academic gaps between L E P students and their peers. They mentioned that ILC instruction could help L E P students develop that academic language necessary to understand and express essential concepts at the appropriate grade (Chamot & O'Malley, 1987; Mohan, 1986; Snow, Met, and Genesee, 1989). Also, Harper and Piatt (1998) mentioned that thematic links across subject areas were generally considered effective for E S O L learners (Enright & McCloskey, 1988; Garcia, 1988, 1991). In a content-based approach, students simultaneously acquire subject matter expertise and greater proficiency in English, the medium of instruction. In other words, content-based E S L aims to develop communicative competence in the target language along with content knowledge in a particular subject area (Brinton, Snow, & Wesche, 1989). E S L students learn to master skills necessary for academic success (Raphan & Moser, 1993-1994). Raphan and Moser (1993-1994) presented the features 36 of the content-based approach, according to Brinton, Snow, and Wesche (1989): 1. Students are presented with authentic reading texts from the subject area, which they must learn to read not only literally but interpretively and critically as well. 2. Content-based instruction gives students the opportunity to respond orally to content-based material, an opportunity not ordinarily afforded them in the content classroom. 3. A format is provided in which student synthesize factual information and ideas from lecture and reading sources. 4. Content-based teaching allows students to integrate academic skills (e.g., note-taking from texts and lectures) and language skills that will prepare them for the rigours of academic life, (p. 17) Oxford (1993) discussed several forms of C B - E S L such as English for specific purposes, theme-based, task-based, adjunct, and sheltered. English for specific purposes (ESP) means language skills are integrated for the purpose of learning English to be used in specific situations for particular needs, e.g., English for academic purposes, English for science (Hutchinson & Waters, 1987; Swales, 1985). Theme-based C B - E S L is when language skills are integrated in the study of a theme (Brinton, Snow, & Wesche, 1989). Task-based C B - E S L is when language skills are integrated through meaningful language tasks that can be related to a subject-area (Scarcella & Oxford, 1992). Adjunct C B - E S L is when separate language and content courses are linked through the collaboration of the instructors and curricula (Snow & Brinton, 1988). Sheltered C B - E S L is when students are taught the content and the language using simplified English that is modified to the students' level of proficiency (Edwards, Wesche, Krashen, Clement, & Kruidenier, 1984). 2.6.1 C A L L A (Cognitive Academic Language Learning Approach) C A L L A (Cognitive Academic Language Learning Approach) described by 37 Chamot and O'Malley (1987) aims to teach the English language through content materials. It integrates curriculum based on content subject, academic language development activities, and learning strategy instruction. It provides a bridge between English language instruction and mainstream courses. Raphan and Moser (1993-1994) noted that in planning a content-based approach, instructors must let the subject matter dictate the choice of language activities. Furthermore, Raphan and Moser (1993-1994) explained that an important feature of C A L L A is that the E S L course does not exactly replicate the material taught in the core content classroom. In addition, when choosing materials, E S L instructors would consult with content teachers to assess the specific language skills needed in that discipline. Moreover, according to Raphan and Moser (1993-1994), all instructors engaged in bridging classes should be, regardless of the subject matter, creative and flexible in selecting, designing, and adapting material. The willingness of E S L instructors to communicate and work with content-area teachers is also essential to the C A L L A method. 2.6.2 Social vs. Academic Language Needs: BICS and C A L P Collier (1989) recommended that content-based, integrated skill instruction should occur while E S L students are learning basic, social language skills. This is related to earlier research by Cummins (1979, 1981) on the differences between BICS and C A L P . In other words, he distinguished between social and academic language abilities. Cummins (1984) described language proficiency in terms of two continua. The first is the cognitive difficulty of the task which ranges from cognitively undemanding, such as reading definitions, to cognitively demanding, such as making an oral presentation on an academic topic. The second is the amount of context in which language occurs. Context can be very rich or full of linguistic clues to the meaning or context can be reduced or missing additional clues to the meaning. According to Cummins (1981, 1984), cognitive academic language tasks are often more intellectually demanding because they are context-reduced, with 38 meaning typically inferred from linguistic or literacy-related features of a relatively formal written or oral text. In comparison, many basic interpersonal communication tasks are cognitively less demanding and rich in context, with many situational clues to the meaning. Therefore, competence in basic interpersonal communication tasks occurs earlier than competence in cognitive academic language tasks. Cummins (1982) used Canadian research to indicate that E S L learners develop proficiency in social language, BICS, within two years, but success with C A L P at the level of native English speakers ordinarily takes five to seven years. This time lag may negatively affect E S L students' success with academic subject matter. Therefore, it is imperative that E S L students are provided the E S L support necessary to cope with their academic work. 2.6.3 Knowledge Framework One effective model of ILC is the Knowledge Framework (KF) (Mohan, 1986). The graphic representations of the KF's knowledge structures have been extensively researched by Tang (1992a, 1992b, 1993, 1994). In Tang's naturalistic studies of two grade seven classes in Vancouver (1992a.) and Burnaby (1993) she researched the effect of graphic representation of KSs on these E S L students' comprehension of content and acquisition of academic language. Her experiment was part of a larger study conducted in a Vancouver elementary school (Tang, 1989). Her findings suggested that the E S L students who were exposed to graphics experienced better reading comprehension than those E S L students who did not use graphics (1992b). Also, E S L students' awareness of text/knowledge structure and the graphic representation of KSs improved after these structures were explicitly taught, explained, and practised (1993). After these findings, however, Tang (1992b) called for further research in the area to validate some of these claims. She stated that "content-area reading comprehension and E S L pedagogy would benefit from a systematic program of research to explore the value of various graphic forms, graphic functions, and KSs in student learning" (1992b, p. 191). 39 Tang's (1992b) research findings were not surprising considering the large number of visual or graphic learners in a typical classroom. KSs such as "principles" are too abstract for students to understand, unless they are made concrete using a graphic such as a cause and effect or problem/solution chart. Being a visual learner, I have always created my own key visuals to understand or remember content. I now have a systematic method to teach some of these key visuals to E S L students. Furthermore, I have the language items and thinking skills to connect with the content presented in the key visual. Tang's (1992b) findings validated my belief in using graphics to teach and to learn content. Furthermore, an ethnographic study in cross-cultural graphic representation of KSs was conducted by Tang (1994) in Hong Kong. She looked for commonalities across languages/cultures for the purpose of eliciting students' background knowledge and academic or literacy-related skills learned in Hong Kong. She proposed that graphic representations of Mohan's (1986) knowledge structures would enable E S L students' prior knowledge to be activated by an English-speaking teacher. Her findings supported her thesis that certain comprehension input in Chinese was retrievable in English and that knowledge structures were common across languages. Furthermore, from Tang's (1994) cross-cultural studies, she concluded that E S L teachers can expect that most E S L students have been exposed to similar graphic representations of KSs in their former countries. Thus, according to Tang (1994), the use of graphics could be one way to elicit students' background or prior knowledge acquired in their first language. Her study was a comparison of secondary school textbook illustrations and common graphic forms which exist across languages, in particular Cantonese, Japanese, Mexican and English. Moreover, recent research indicates that graphics do enhance E S L student learning of content (Early, Mohan & Hooper, 1989; Tang, 1991, 1992a, 1992b). There is also considerable evidence that KS graphic representations and other types of 40 graphics help comprehension and academic achievement. There was a concern, however, that graphics were not given sufficient attention in schools. Students could ignore or only superficially attend to graphics (Reinking, 1986, p. 146). The reason for this may have been that teachers themselves did not sufficiently value graphics by comparison with the written text. 2.7 Background Knowledge and Schema Theory Activating E S L student background knowledge is integral to effective integrated language and content instruction. Comprehension is linked with meaningful learning; thus the activation of background knowledge helps construct this meaning. Hadley (1993) outlined three types of background knowledge that should all be activated in the second language comprehension process: 1. linguistic information, or one's knowledge of the target language code; 2. knowledge of the world, including one's store of concepts and expectations based on prior experience; and 3. knowledge of discourse structure, or the understanding of how various kinds or types of discourse (such as conversations, radio broadcasts, literary texts, political speeches, newspaper and magazine stories, etc.) are generally organised. Despite the non-linear nature of comprehension and the complexities involved in learning a second language, the importance of background knowledge is still retained. Furthermore, Hadley (1993) explained the importance of context and background knowledge for comprehension. To increase the comprehension and retention of new information, a student's background knowledge needs to be activated by the use of advance organisers, key visuals/graphics or other types of contextual support in language comprehension. Moreover, Schema Theory explains the important role of background knowledge in enhancing the language-comprehension process. One of its main tenets is that readers or listeners of text material construct meaning from their own cognitive structure, previously acquired or background knowledge. In other words, the text does not carry meaning by itself, but requires the reader or listener to 41 construct meaning by activating their background knowledge or schemata (Carrell, 1982,) - an abstract representation of a generic concept for an object, event, or situation (Rumelhart, 1977). Carrell and Eisterhold (1983) described two basic types of schemata used in understanding messages: 1. content schemata (relating to one's background knowledge and expectations about objects, events and situations) and 2. formal schemata (relating to one's knowledge of the rhetorical or discourse structures of different types of texts). The comprehension process relies on both types of schemata. Research into schema-based understanding supports the view that learning language in context may be easier than in its isolated parts. Students need authentic input of information in order to interact with the text. In conclusion, research into schema-based understanding supports the view that language learning in context (ie. the use of literature in the language classroom), greatly enhances the language-comprehension process (Carrell & Eisterhold, 1983). 2.8 Learning Strategy Instruction Learning strategy instruction is another key component of effective ILC instruction. "Learning strategy instruction is a cognitive approach to teaching that helps students learn conscious processes and techniques that facilitate the comprehension, acquisition, and retention of new skills and concepts" (Chamot, O'Malley, 1987). Academic language learning is more effective with learning strategies because E S L students learning academic language use similar principles as English speakers use for reading and problem solving. This means that "strategies for language learning are similar to strategies for learning content" (Chamot, O'Malley, 1987). Learning strategy instruction is necessary for E S L students who need extra support in learning language and content, especially when they are preparing to make the transition from the E S L to the mainstream classroom. 2.9 Genre-Based Approach In addition to the ILC approach, I reviewed the literature related to the genre-42 based and literature-based approaches to second language instruction. Along with integrated language and content instruction, research findings have shown that reading comprehension can be significantly increased by teaching E S L students to recognise expository text structure - the genre-based approach. For example, Carrel (1985) showed how explicit teaching of top level text structures (genres) facilitated intermediate E S L college students' reading comprehension of expository text. Also, Carrel (1990) researched the relationships between awareness and recall performance on different types of expository texts with college E S L students. Explicit teaching of the hierarchical organisation of top-level text structures increased recall of information. Furthermore, the three types of text structure instruction include 1. direct instruction which explicitly raises student awareness of specific text structuring (Carrell, 1985); 2. development of student awareness of text structure through more general graphic organisers (Alvermann, 1986); and 3. instruction in reading strategies more generally (Carrell, et al., 1989). In short, there is considerable support for the direct instruction of textual organisation as a way to improve reading comprehension and recall. Text structure instruction has also shown improvement in students' content learning in many academic subjects. Thus, it facilitated both language skills and academic content learning. Therefore, I provide genre-based instruction to the E S L students in their content classes, especially in their English courses. In addition, an evaluation of a genre-based approach to the teaching of English for Academic Purposes (EAP) and English for Specific Purposes (ESP) writing showed that this approach can be successful (Henry & Roseberry, 1998). The results of their study showed that this teaching approach of focusing on rhetorical organization could be effective with advanced learners in an E A P / E S P teaching situation. The researchers noted that the success of the genre-based approach may be because an awareness of the generic structure of the text makes it easier for 43 writers to organize their material and thus achieve their communicative goals and highly textured writing. Christie (1999) discussed genre theory and E S L teaching from a systemic functional perspective. She noted that contemporary genre theory within an Australian context draws upon systemic functional (SF) linguistic theory, especially as developed by Halliday (1994), Hasan (1996), Martin (1992), and Matthiessen (1995). Christie (1999) stated that language is systemic in that it offers "systems of choices in language, each significant for the realisation of meaning" (p. 759). Furthermore, language is functional because "its organisation quite fundamentally reveals the purposes for which any natural language came into being" (p. 759). Feez (in press) produced an authoritative account of the impact of genre-based approaches on the provision of adult migrant English programs in Australia. Feez (1998) also produced a text-based syllabus design for the adult audience. Christie (1999) outlined the reasons genres are useful in teaching E S L students, according to Feez (1998): 1. They offer a principled way to identify and focus upon different types of English texts, providing a framework in which to learn features of grammar and discourse. 2. They offer students a sense of the generic models that are regularly revisited in an English-speaking culture, illuminating ways in which they are adapted or accommodated in long bodies of text in which several distinct genres may be found. 3. They offer the capacity for initiating students into ways of making meaning that are valued in English-speaking communities. 4. Because they permit all these things, they also form a potential basis for reflecting on and critiquing the ways in which knowledge and information are organised and constructed in the 44 English language, (p. 762) According to Reppen (1994-1995), the focus of genre-based instruction has been a response to the occasional excesses of the process approach to writing instruction. A process approach to writing "often disregards the importance of written form and, in effect, takes power away from learners, particularly those from different language or culture backgrounds" (p. 32). He stated that many writing conventions will remain a mystery for ESL students unless teachers are able to make the students aware of these forms and patterns of language. Reppen (1994-1995) noted that the emphasis on the process of writing to the exclusion of the product neglects direct instruction in certain text features, yet students are still evaluated on their understanding of these features, e.g., text organization, sentence structure. Furthermore, he remarked that "by providing students with the language to talk about texts, they can better understand how to make a piece of writing more effective and appropriate to the communicative purpose. This helps students increase their writing skills and become more effective during peer editing and revision" (p. 32). The results of his research study of student writing, content knowledge, and attitudes showed that through a focus on language use and the genre demands of different ways to organize information, students also mastered content material while gaining greater skill with various school-valued ways of writing. In conclusion, Reppen (1994-1995) recommended that instruction should provide a scaffolding so that students can progress toward more academically valued ways of writing, learn content material, and have a better chance to experience success in school. 2.10 Literature-Based Second Language Instruction Literature-based second language instruction greatly influenced the design of my Literature Through the Knowledge Framework (LTKF) unit. Custodio and Sutton (1998) examined literature-based instruction as one means to develop literacy skills and to prepare second language (L2) learners for the mainstream classroom. Their findings substantially influenced the design of my Literature Through the 45 Knowledge Framework Unit (see Appendix F). Literature-based implies a movement in literacy instruction away from the exclusive use of the basal reader and toward teaching and learning through literature, both fictional and factual (Sloan, 1995). The movement toward literature-based instruction is grounded in the theoretical frameworks of Dewey (1929), Piaget (1955), and Vygotsky (1962), who promoted the active participation of children in the education process. Furthermore, Goodman (1986) and Smith (1971) viewed literacy as a holistic process. Based on this holistic stance, they advocated the whole language approach in which language is learned and used as a whole system of communication, rather than fragmented into its component parts (Goodman, 1986). Custodio and Sutton (1998) recommended this holistic approach to L2 learners. They stated that research in second language acquisition, such as by Elley and Mangubhai (1983) support the claim that activities which combine speaking, listening, reading, and writing, are more likely to enhance both literacy and oral development. Studies involving secondary school L2 classrooms also support the holistic approach (Atwell, 1987; Rigg & Allen, 1989). L2 students in a literature-based classroom would have their activities center around authentic texts. The advantages of a literature-based approach to L2 teaching are stated by Custodio and Sutton (1998). First, it promotes literacy development. In other words, students learn English when they are immersed in reading and writing. Krashen (1992) emphasized that a second language is best acquired when the focus of instruction is on meaning rather than form and there is sufficient opportunity to engage in meaningful use of language in a relatively anxiety-free environment. He also promoted the use of authentic texts for authentic purposes. Moreover, the use of one extended text, such as a novel, or similar texts based on the same theme, subject, genre, or author with L2 readers provides comprehensible input that builds schema and background knowledge. Second, a literature-based approach provides language models. Custodio and 46 Sutton (1998) stated that literature can be the vehicle to introduce and practice new language skills. It can expose students to a variety of styles and genres. Teachers can use the best literature available as a model of masterful language usage. Third, this approach integrates language and content objectives. In other words, a literature-based approach fits well with content-based instruction (CBI). CBI is the integration of academic content with second language aims (Brinton, Snow, & Wesche, 1989). In other words, a literature-based program for secondary students provides the concurrent teaching of academic subject matter and second language teaching. Brinton, Snow, and Wesche (1989) identified several benefits of content-based language and literature study. "Students gain knowledge of elements of the linguistic code: vocabulary, grammar, sentence, and paragraph structure; discourse conventions and organizational patterns of various genres; interactive communication skills; and types and styles of writing" (Custodio & Sutton, 1998, p. 20). To conclude, Custodio and Sutton (1998) outlined how a literature-based program for secondary school E S L students can serve many functions. First, weak readers gain security from the familiarity of style and format with a long-term study of a particular text. Second, students who are encouraged to read may become life-long readers. Third, discussions arising from issues presented in the novels can promote higher level thinking skills and an opportunity to use language authentically. Fourth, when cultures of students are reflected in the novels, the cultures may be presented realistically and given value. Fifth, reading, writing, speaking, and listening activities are integrated providing the basis for authentic work. Sixth, literature provides insight into culture, helping immigrant students to understand how other cultures live and think. According to Purves and Monson (1984), a literature program should have two important functions that prepare students through a transactional relationship between the reader and the text. First, the program should provide the students with a literary schema (analytic questions) that broadens their background knowledge in 47 literary genres and elements and enables them to evaluate literature. Second, the program should also encourage aesthetic involvement and individual transactions (personal and affective questions). Thus, activities, key visuals, and writing genres included in my L T K F unit reflected Purves and Monson's (1984) design of a transactional literature program. For example, the elements of literature could be critically analysed along with the students' reflective journal and poetry writing. Furthermore, Probst (1984), stressed that literature is experience, not information, and that the student is a participant in the literature, not an outside observer. Thus, the focus of a literature program should be on the individual reader who can be led to organised and intelligent reflection on the great issues of literature, which are. also the great issues of life. In other words, Probst (1984) elevated the students' experience with literature over their knowledge of literature. He also introduced and discussed popular themes for adolescent literature. For example, the themes include sexuality, violence, adventure, coming of age/establishing identity, family and friendship, and the categories include historical, mystery, science fiction, fantasy, and the supernatural. Addressing the current need for multicultural themes in literature, Royster (1991), emphasised the multicultural reality of our society and the need for themes to reflect our pluralist society. According to Norton (1992), the objectives for literature-based programs were for students to understand and appreciate different literary genres and elements. The creation, design, and application of the L T K F unit were strongly influenced by the Norton design. She advocated for the inclusion of 1. books and activities that encourage students to read and enjoy a wide variety of genres and types of books, 2. classic examples of each genre as well as contemporary works that students might use for comparisons, criticisms, and evaluations, 3. variety of books to encourage students to develop their own knowledge or schemata about literature and literary structures, and 4. books for formal instruction and others for recreational reading 48 and incidental learning. In addition to a wide range of books, teachers need to expose students to various approaches to reading literature. These approaches would help students learn to read for different purposes; learn the importance of literary elements; critically evaluate what they read; understand the differences and requirements for genres of literature such as folklore, fantasy, poetry, realistic fiction, biography, and information books; and read texts for aesthetic purposes (Norton, 1992). Norton's (1992) three forms of literature-based instruction (teacher direction, student interaction, and independent reading) also guided the LTKF unit in practice. The first form includes teacher-led instruction and teacher selected literature. The second form is teacher-and-student-led interaction and teacher-and student-selection of literature. The third form relies on independent reading and student-selected literature. Norton's (1992) focus on a balance of activities and literature that emphasised all three forms of instruction was the foundation for my ESL support of ESL students in the English department. Furthermore, Norton (1992) discussed thematic units for a literature-based program. Thematic units could be genre specific or they could be developed around various themes or literary elements. The LTKF unit worked very well when designed around a particular theme or genre. Norton (1992) noted that literature provides rich models of language made memorable. Reading a substantial and contextualised body of text, students gain familiarity with many features of the written language - sentence structures, vocabulary, linguistic devices - which enrich their own writing skills. Literature could be used as a springboard for many speaking and listening activities. In addition, literary language is special in that its figurative language (metaphors) evokes an emotional response from the reader. Lastly, students of literature hopefully become more creative, imaginative, and adventurous with their own language learning. Literature-based reading programs should promote the fun and 49 joy of reading; enrich students' lives; provide material that is inspiring, interesting, and informative; and increase reading ability (Norton, 1992). The benefits of literature was also addressed by Collie and Slater (1987). They addressed the following questions: "Why was literature beneficial in the language-learning process? How could we rethink the way we presented and used literature in order to develop a broader range of activities which involved more of our students?" (p. 3) First of all, literature offers valuable authentic material. E S L students could gain familiarity with many different linguistic uses, forms, and conventions of the written mode: with irony, theme, exposition, narration, and so on. Second, Collie & Slater (1987) mentioned that literature incorporates a great deal of cultural information for E S L learners. Third, language enrichment is another benefit of literature. In other words, extensive reading increases the learner's vocabulary and background knowledge. With regard to classroom practice, Collie & Slater (1987) guided the design of the L T K F unit. For example, they suggested that there should be activities to supplement the printed page in order to involve as many of the students' faculties as possible. This was apparent in the list of activities in the unit. Another example was that teachers needed to tap the resources of knowledge and experience within the group through pair or group work. Students could share their background knowledge with others and thus negotiate meaning as a collective process. The L T K F unit was thus designed for both individual and co-operative learning experiences. In addition, the students must be able to use their target language while participating in the range of chosen activities. The Knowledge Framework was an effective tool in integrating language and content into the activities. The overall aim for Collie & Slater (1987) and my approach to teaching literature was language development for students within the context of suitable works of literature. 2. 11 Assessment and Evaluation of ESL Students One of my goals as an E S L support teacher was to facilitate and promote 50 alternate assessment practices for content teachers to use with their ESL students. Thus, I read recent research related to assessment and evaluation of ESL learners. Writing assessment and evaluation, ways we express or frame our value judgments, especially of second language learners, was of great concern for many content teachers in my research study. Assessment and evaluation drives and controls so much of content teaching. In other words, much of what teachers do in their classrooms is determined by the assessment structures they work under. Alternate assessment practices for ESL students are imperative. Assessment measures need to be broadened to become teacher and student-centred instead of test-centred. My goal was to make the assessment methods of a particular course match what was valued in that program. I wanted to teach students that knowledge was something that was negotiated and explored. Evaluation should be a cooperative venture in which teacher and students share impressions and help each other understand what has happened in the reading of content. Therefore, I created a series of student self-assessment forms for a variety of tasks. Showing the criteria for assessment prior to assessment was very valuable for the students and encouraged greater student achievement. An understanding that ESL students' comprehension of concepts may be inaccurately assessed through speaking or writing in English was important in order to foster new teaching methods (e.g., graphics) to reduce the language barrier. In other words, teachers had difficulty assessing whether ESL students had mastered the content objectives or whether language was interfering with the student's acquisition and application of information. Teemant, Bernhardt, and Rodriguez-Munoz (1996) noted that it is misleading to equate linguistic accuracy with conceptual accuracy. If content and cognitive knowledge could be assessed separately from linguistic ability, then the ESL students may have a chance to demonstrate their intellectual capability. Thus, sheltering students from their academic classes served as a detriment rather than an act of support in preparing 51 students for academic competition. With regard to assessment issues for ILC Instruction, Short (1993) stated that over the past decade much progress had been made in developing and implementing instructional strategies and techniques that effectively assess integrated language and content instruction. Most assessment instruments actually test both content concepts and language ability. Thus, teachers have difficulty assessing whether E S L students have mastered the content objectives or whether language is interfering with the student's acquisition and application of information. Short (1993) recommended that teachers focus on a single objective, be it content or language specific. According to Short (1993), there has been a demand for assessment alternatives by language and content educators who want more accurate measures of their students' knowledge. Alternative assessment had become the trend. Most educators are experimenting with it in some form in their classroom. E S L educators have to use a wider range of assessment practices than most other teachers because assessment is not only used to measure student achievement within the course, but also plays a gate keeping role in deciding which students will be placed in which class or program and later, when a student will exit from a class or program. In Short's (1993) conclusion she reminded readers that in integrated language and content courses we are doubly burdening our students, but we have little choice due to time and interest in our E S L students' educational careers: time, because many E S L students do not have five to seven years to master the English language required to succeed in mainstream courses; interest, because a grammar-based curriculum is not appealing to E S L students who desire to fit into the school environment. She concluded her article by advocating for alternative assessment for language minority students. No approach is without drawbacks, and even though assessment is the weak link in the integrated language and content approach, the framework offered by Short (1993) aims to strengthen that aspect of instructional practice. One question that arose after reading Short's (1993) research was the feasibility of applying alternate assessment practices in the content classes. Along with alternate assessment comes the questions of reliability (the ability of the raters to agree) and validity (the value of the judgment given by a rater) of direct testing of writing or holistic scoring. Hamp-Lyons, and Cohen (1994), Huot (1990), and Vaughan (1991), highlighted for me the limitations of alternate assessment practices such as holistic scoring especially in the E S L writing context. On the topic of student assessment, August & Hakuta (1997) point out that unlike other students, E S L students are typically assessed for oral language proficiency, program placement, and eventually exit into the mainstream curriculum. Assessment measures are not uniform within the United States. Quality and appropriateness of available second-language assessment instruments vary greatly. Furthermore, alternate, non-traditional assessment practices, such as portfolios and cumulative projects, require attention to reliability, validity, content appropriateness, scoring consistency, and matters of norm and comparison groups. Alternate assessment measures, however, have the potential to provide more useful information to students, teachers, parents, and community members in the future (August & Hakuta, 1997). 53 Chapter 3 METHODOLOGY For the purpose of this study, action research is defined as research into practice by practitioners and for practitioners (Mcniff, Lomax, & Whitehead, 1996). As an action researcher, I described, interpreted, and explained events while I sought to change them for the betterment of my school community. Furthermore, this project employed qualitative data-gathering techniques appropriate to exploring the following research questions: 1. What is the role of an E S L support specialist collaborating with content teachers? 2. What is the effectiveness of this E S L support role? 3. What is the effectiveness of an integrated language and content approach with E S L learners and their content teachers? In the process of my study, however, I investigated more than the three primary research questions. Therefore, I recorded my observations on the topics of challenges and issues for both content teachers and E S L learners in mainstream courses and the unique role of being both a teacher and researcher. This chapter describes the methodology used in this research study: the design of the research, context for the study, participants, data collection, and analysis. 3.1 Research Methodology I chose action research mainly because it is the type of research in which teachers take responsibility for identifying their own research questions and conducting their own investigations (Ellis, 1998). It is a vehicle for personal development, better professional practice, improvements in the school that I work, and making a contribution to the common good (Ellis, 1998). In my study I describe, interpret, and explain events (enquiry) while I seek to change them (action) for the better (purpose). In addition, action research provides the necessary link between self-evaluation and professional development. The process involves reflection, and changes in practice (professional development). It is informed action, which 54 means systematically investigating my own actions and motives, treating my findings and interpretations critically, and making myself open to alternative viewpoints in order to reduce my personal biases (Mcniff, Lomax, & Whitehead, 1996). One of the aims of this study is to develop reflective practice so that I am clearer about my own motives and can live my values more fully in my personal, social and professional lives (Mcniff, Lomax, & Whitehead, 1996). It can also be termed mancipatory or critical action research because the study is a collaborative, critical and self-critical inquiry into a major problem or issue in my own practice (Mcniff, Lomax, & Whitehead, 1996). It sought to solve problems through teamwork and through following a cyclical process of (1) strategic planning, (2) action, (3) observation, evaluation and self-evaluation, (4)critical and self-critical reflection on the cycle. Our aim was to change or transform the system or organisation, and empower participants through personal or social transformation. Throughout the study I questioned what I was doing in my teaching practice and role as a support teacher. I was empowered by joining with my colleagues to change our situations to the way we wanted them to be. This was an inquiry grounded in what was real. It provided opportunities for others to see and understand what I had discovered. This research was a natural extension of what I am interested in as a professional. This approach was dynamic, flexible, challenging and had real meaning for the participants. Being involved in this action research study allowed me to find out things about myself, my students, and my colleagues that I would not have been able to do alone. I was able to look at my classroom, my school, and my community differently. 3.2 Context for the Study 3.2.1 School Site In 1998, our secondary school in Richmond was a grade eight to twelve school and had a population of 1,225 students. Of those students, 453 required E S L training. 55 In other words, in the school year of 1998-1999, approximately thirty percent of our students were enrolled in the E S L program. 232 students were in the level five category of E S L , which were entitled to E S L support in their mainstream courses. There were three part-time E S L support teachers to provide support services to all the level five E S L students and approximately thirty content teachers in three departments - English, social studies, and science. It was a multicultural school including students from approximately eighteen countries. The largest group were immigrants from Hong Kong and Taiwan. The school was situated in the urban centre of Richmond. The student population of the school and for my research study was primarily from middle to upper-class families. Since the early 1990's more and more E S L students, primarily from Asia and especially Hong Kong, had entered our school system into each of the grade levels. In fact, in 1997-1998, the school districts in the Lower Mainland region accounted for 90% of all the identified E S L students in the province (Fowler & Hooper, 1998). The teaching staff consisted of eighty teachers in the year 1998-1999. The majority of the teachers at our secondary school were English-speaking from European backgrounds. Therefore, not only did many teachers and students share different languages, they also shared different cultural backgrounds. 3.2.2 School Culture: Teachers and Students For senior ESL students, ages sixteen to twenty, time was of the essence. They were under tremendous pressures to succeed in this new English environment. The number of years to acquire the cognitive academic language proficiency (CALP) (Cummins, 1984) for acceptance and success at post secondary institutions was many more than most E S L students expected. Therefore, much of my support time with these students was spent encouraging, motivating, and supporting them to continue their language training despite their slow progress. I observed that the junior students, ages thirteen to fifteen, were in less of a hurry to learn the English language and for the most part wanted the language 56 training to be enjoyable and entertaining. They were mainstreamed into the lower grades so their language proficiency could be lower than the senior students in order to exit the ESL program. With less time and academic pressures, the junior students seemed to thrive in the ESL program and move through the program much faster. From my observations, many of the recent immigrants (mostly Chinese in my teaching context) tried to both learn English and maintain their first language (LI) and cultures. They spoke their first language the majority of the time and thus their acquisition of the English language was quite slow. These recent immigrants were closely connected to their cultural backgrounds and gravitated towards people of the same backgrounds. For language and cultural reasons, many beginning ESL students were not assimilating, but are a community unto their own. Teaching English to immigrants who had been in Canada longer (two to three years) seemed in some ways easier. These ESL students had been exposed to more Canadian culture and seemed to recognise the importance of learning English to be academically successful in Canadian society. Some of these ESL students had blended their backgrounds with the Canadian culture, but for the most part were still functioning in both their first languages and cultures. English was primarily used as an academic tool and used in academic contexts. These ESL students made an investment in the English language in hope for a return in their education. They used English for academic purposes. Furthermore, since English was viewed as a tool for educational success and a better future, these ESL students were gaining power in their school community through learning English, although most of their power remained in their first language (LI) communities. 3.2.3 ESL Department: Programming ESL Students The ESL department at our secondary school offered four levels of ESL instruction, each level increasing in difficulty and requiring less hours of instruction. There were five ESL instructors who also taught in other departments 57 such as social studies and English. When E S L students arrived in Richmond, their language proficiency was assessed at the school board and they were given a level designation for their E S L support. Once they arrived at the secondary school, all the junior and senior E S L students were put into their appropriate levels. In other words, junior and senior students were kept apart. Of course, there were exceptions -many, in fact. As an E S L instructor, you could teach a mixture of junior and senior students and a mixture of levels all in the same class. Both time tabling and class size limits influenced what happens to these E S L students (See Appendix E). Once E S L students, junior or senior, of any level could show they had reached level five, which is based on set criteria in reading, writing, and speaking, along with a standardised reading examination, these E S L students were exited out of the E S L program, usually in June, and entered the mainstream English courses in September. Prior to the year 1998, there was no support provided for these level five students and their teachers. Some E S L students, once they had exited E S L , try to pass their English courses in summer school. Unfortunately, summer school courses did not provide a full year of English instruction, and so E S L students were often unprepared for the next level/grade of English. Trying to persuade students and parents to persevere with the slower pace of language acquisition, however, did not seem to succeed. 3.3 Time This project began in September 1998 and concluded in March 1999. Each teacher needed to open one of their classes to observations for one month. They also needed to meet with me once a week to co-plan teaching activities. Meeting times occurred during a prep block, lunch, after school, or release time was arranged. There were teacher-interaction funds that were accessed. One formal interview and questionnaire, each taking one hour, with teachers and students was also required. Each student was observed for one month. 58 3.4 Procedures For this project, I used a variety of qualitative data collection techniques. The collection of data involved journal records of observations, interviews, and questionnaires. As each data collection cycle was completed, I recorded the way in which I monitored and evaluated that cycle. These case records were the data I used to show if 'improvements' had taken place. Also, for each activity I tried or issue I tackled, I kept a research journal to collect substantial data. I kept a detailed journal of my observations, interviews, questionnaires, meetings attended, and activities conducted. Along with the journal, I collected documents relating to the situation, such as student assignments and tests. I followed the action research stages suggested by Mcniff, Lomax, and Whitehead (1996). The procedure was as follows: 1. Communicating by letter and in person the objectives of the project to teachers and students, and inviting them to participate; 2. Meeting with the participating teachers and students to complete a questionnaire and participate in an interview to gain an in-depth understanding of their perceptions, thoughts, and opinions on the research questions; 3. Meeting with the teachers to co-plan activities based on integrated language and content instruction (stage one of the action research cycle: strategic planning); 4. Implementing the action plan for the classroom activities (stage two of the action research cycle: action); 5. Observing and evaluating students' progress based on integrated language and content instruction (stage 3 of the action research cycle: observation, evaluation and self-evaluation); 7. Meeting with the teachers to reflect upon the action taken and student progress (stage four of the action research process: critical and self-critical reflection on the cycle); 8. Documenting all the observations and interviews from the action research cycle in my research journal; 9. Examining, analysing the data with the participating teachers and students; 10. Planning the next action research cycle; 11. Writing the report. Furthermore, participating teachers had one of their classes observed three 59 times/hours a week, for one month. Teachers met with the researcher once a week for one hour to co-plan teaching activities, and reflect upon the results. I reported all my findings from the observations, interviews, and questionnaires with teachers and students, in a research journal. Furthermore, dialogues were recorded in writing, rather than audiotaped and cited verbatim. Student participants were observed three times/hours a week for one month in their content course. The observations were of the participating ESL students' progress based on various teaching strategies and content. I implemented the questionnaire to obtain background information of the participants (teachers and students) in order to better understand their responses to the ESL support program and related research questions. The questionnaire was administered during the interviews of teachers and students. It took approximately fifteen minutes. 3.5 P a r t i c i p a n t s I conducted this research with four English teachers who were colleagues of mine, and had shown support and an interest in my work, and had a high ESL population in their classroom. I also selected ESL level 5 students in these English teachers' classrooms, some of whom I had taught previously in my ESL program. I interviewed nineteen students in this study between January and March 1999. Some of the students involved in this study were those who had initiated contact with me as an ESL specialist for support before I conducted this study. Therefore, they were seeking help and this project would further their goals. I wrote a letter of invitation to participate in this research project for all possible subjects. Participation in this action research project was voluntary and discussed in person with the subjects and the researcher. The project was conducted at my secondary school in a variety of social studies and English classrooms. The subjects who did not speak English had their consent forms translated into their native languages in order to provide an informed consent. 60 3.5.1 Myself and Educational Philosophy Much of my educational philosophy for supporting ESL students influenced the design of my research project. My beliefs have their foundation in my practice and in the research in TESOL. I hold particular beliefs about effective second language instruction which are an integral part of my teaching methods and learning decisions. First of all, I am committed to provide equal opportunities for all the students to learn. I believe that an appreciation of the first languages and cultures of language minority students is essential and that a sensitivity to the emotional needs and individual skills should be integrated into the ESL program. In other words, ESL learners are like all learners and therefore require active participation, an opportunity to learn through individual and group processes, and an opportunity to learn in a variety of ways and at different rates. Secondly, ESL support should strive for continuous learning of both general academic concepts and language (Teemant, Bernhardt, & Rodriguez-Munoz, 1996). Thus, graphics and key visuals (Mohan, 1986; Early, Mohan & Hooper, 1989; Tang, 1992a, 1992b, 1993) are used to lower the language barrier and organise information so that it is easier for ESL students to access. Thirdly, I need to access the students' prior knowledge before introducing any new information (Carrell & Eisterhold, 1983; Hadley, 1993). Fourthly, all the students need continuous exposure to large quantities of written and spoken English which is comprehensible and age appropriate. Fifthly, regular and substantial interaction in English for diverse purposes and the opportunity to communicate for real, personally significant purposes are key factors associated with successful ESL instruction (Norton, 1992). The main objective for supporting ESL students is to help them develop fluency and literacy in English so that they will be able to function in the social and academic environment of a secondary school. The following skills should be developed according to the needs and abilities of the individual student. First, basic interpersonal communication proficiency in the student's everyday life and 61 cognitive academic language proficiency in the student's school life are extremely important goals (Cummins, 1984). Second, learning strategies, study skills, and problem solving skills pertaining to the student's course work and everyday life are important for surviving in and out of school (Chamot & O'Malley, 1987). Third, Canadian citizenship, geography, history, and culture should be taught to enable students to understand and adapt to their new environment. Furthermore, the basic skills of speaking, listening, writing, reading, and English grammar should be developed. 3.5.2 The English Department With regard to the formal observations, interviews, and questionnaires, I worked with the English department. In particular, I worked with four English teachers and nineteen ESL level 5 students. A description follows of the four English teachers who participated in my research study. One English teacher was a master teacher (Teacher A) who had taught English and ESL for many years in British Columbia. Teacher A was a female English teacher from England. She had taught for ten years here in Canada. She had experience using the Integrated Language and Content approach, in particular the Knowledge Framework for teaching ESL students. Over fifty percent of the students in her English classes were ESL students. She would describe her teaching style as eclectic, including some traditional and progressive teaching methods. Teacher B was a twenty-nine year old Japanese-Canadian woman who had lived in Canada her whole life, but had worked in Japan for four years. Her first language was English, but she also spoke Japanese and French. She was a new teacher in our district who had taught English overseas for several years. I was also fortunate to work with two other English teachers at our school from February to March 1999. Teacher C was an experienced English teacher who had taught English for approximately ten years with both the neediest students in the school (in alternate programs for the non-academic students) and the brightest (in 62 the International Baccalaureate program). In other words, Teacher C was able to teach English to all types of students and had been very successful. Teacher D was the student teacher for Teacher C. Teacher D also wanted to be involved in this research project and was interested in teaching ESL students in the future. She met with me several times to discuss her students and how we could adapt her lessons to meet the needs of her ESL students. She was familiar with the Knowledge Framework approach from her education training at the University of British Columbia. She was very interested to see my unit which integrates the Knowledge Framework and literature. She was twenty-three years old and was graduating with her Bachelor of Education from the University of British Columbia. 3.5.3 English as a Second Language Students: Level Five A detailed description of the nineteen ESL level 5 students is included to provide background information which aids in the analysis of the qualitative data collected for this research study (see Appendix D). The nineteen ESL level 5 students were selected to be part of this research study (nine male and ten female students). They were observed in their English classes, given a questionnaire to complete, and interviewed. All these ESL students willingly participated in the study and contributed greatly to the data collection. Descriptions and students' perceptions in answering the various interview questions and questionnaires are reported in this study, but are not meant to be judgmental or disparaging. The first student I interviewed, student A, was from one of the English 12 courses I was helping in as the ESL support teacher. Thus, I knew this student from working with her for three months. She was Chinese, spoke Cantonese, and was from Hong Kong. She was seventeen years old and had received three years of ESL instruction in her four years in Canada. She said that she spent four to five hours each night on her homework, and even stayed up all night on occasion. She had a tutor to help her with her school work. She was doing well in her other academic courses. She felt that she was below average in her English class and needed to work 6 3 very hard to succeed. Her current grade was a C- (see Appendix C), but her English was improving with her diligence and her teacher's guidance, along with my support. Her goal for learning English was to enter a university in Canada and to have a better chance of a job back in her home country. She lived with both parents in Richmond. She said that she was an average student back in Hong Kong. She did not like living in Canada and sometimes resented learning English. She sometimes wanted to speak English, but most of the time she spoke Cantonese to her Cantonese friends. She did not want to fit into Canadian society, have Canadian friends, or participate in Canadian activities. She felt that studying in Hong Kong was harder than in Canada. I also worked with student B for three months in her English 12 class. She was a seventeen year old ESL student from Hong Kong. She spoke Cantonese, Mandarin, and was learning English. She had received only one year of ESL classes and then entered English 11. She felt she was below average in her class and needed to work hard to keep up with the English speakers. She spent around three hours a week doing her English homework. She did not have a tutor to help her outside of class, but did get help from her ESL friends and English speaking classmates. She did not have many native English speaker friends. She said that she spoke in English 20% of the time when she was in her English class, and she spoke English 100% of the time outside of class. She was doing well in her other courses. She was receiving B's. Her goal for learning English was to enter a college or university in Canada. She said that she wanted to learn English because it was a key to success in the world. She lived with both her parents and family in Richmond and said that they were landed immigrants. She enjoyed living in Canada and did not resent learning English in school. She desired to fit into Canadian society. She said that school was more difficult here in Canada only because of the language barrier of learning English. She went from ESL to English 11 in the summer to English 12 in the Fall. This was quite an accomplishment. 64 Student C was also in the English 12 class which I provided E S L support for three months. She was a seventeen year old student from Hong Kong. She spoke Cantonese, Mandarin and was learning English. She had lived in Canada for two years. She had two years of ESL instruction and then went into English 11 and was in English 12 at the time of the study. She felt she was an average student in the English class, but needed to work very hard to keep up with the rest of the class. She spent on average three hours per week on her English homework. She did not have a tutor to help her with her work outside of class, but had utilised the E S L support provided by myself and two colleagues in-class and out of class. She did get help from her E S L friends with her English assignments. She did not have many native English speaking friends and did not seek help from them. She spoke in English 50% of the time in her English class and 100% of the time outside her class. She was receiving good grades in all her other subjects this year. Her goal for learning English was to enter university in Canada. She wanted to learn English and live in Canada and was not resentful. She really wanted to fit into Canadian society, have Canadian friends and participate in Canadian activities. She lived with her family in Richmond. She did not think school in Canada was more difficult than in Hong Kong. Math and science courses in Canada were easier. She took English 11 at summer school in Richmond for no credit, but to get familiar with the content like the novel Lord of the Flies and the play Macbeth. E S L student D was a former student of mine. He was currently in an English 12 course. He was a seventeen year old student from Hong Kong and spoke Cantonese. He had been in Canada for five and a half years with five years of E S L instruction. He viewed himself as below average in his class and needed to work hard to keep up with his classmates. He was just passing this English 12 class, but was borderline. He felt that his writing was very weak in this class and did not think he did anything well in the course. He struggled with organization skills, which hindered his success in his English 12 class. He spent two hours per night on his English 12 homework. 65 He had a tutor to help him with his work. He did get help with his homework from a group of his E S L friends. He did not get help from English-speakers. He spoke English 50% of the time in his English class, but only 10% of the time outside of class. He said that he had high marks in all his other courses. His goal for learning English was to enter a university in Canada. He lived here without his parents, since they both worked in Hong Kong. He said that he was an unmotivated student in Hong Kong and almost failed all of his courses. He wanted to learn English so that he could live in Canada in the future. He wanted to live in Canada and did not resent learning English. He also wanted to fit into Canadian society, but did not have any Canadian friends or participate in any Canadian activities. He found school the same in Hong Kong and Canada. Student E was an eighteen year old, female ESL student from Taiwan. Her first language was Mandarin. She had lived in Canada for five years and had four years of E S L instruction. She was a former E S L student of mine. I taught her E S L level four -the level before entering English 11 in the mainstream. She felt that she was an average student in her English 12 class and worked quite hard. Her grade was a C-and she felt that her mark would improve by the end of the year. She spent approximately three hours a week doing her English homework, but had a tutor twice a week to help at home. She did not study with a partner or group, but did get help from friends with her English assignments. She did have English-speaking friends outside of class and received help from them. She spoke in English 100% of the time when she was in class, but only 50% of the time when she was outside of class. Her goal in learning English was to enter college or university and to have a better chance of a job in Canada or back in Taiwan. She lived in Canada with one parent, her mother, and her father was back in Taiwan. She acknowledged that she had some difficulty at school in Taiwan. She wanted to learn English and live in Canada, but may not live in Canada her whole life. She wanted to fit into Canadian society and have Canadian friends. She was a member of the library club which had English-66 speaking students. She found school in Taiwan and here in Canada very similar with regard to the level of difficulty. Both were difficult for her. Student F was female, aged eighteen, and was from El Salvador. She spoke Spanish as her first language and had lived in Canada for five years. She had received four years of E S L instruction before entering English 11. She was a shy student, and self-conscious of her accent when she spoke in English. She felt she was an above average student in her class, worked hard and was organised. Her grade in her English course was a B. She also felt she would improve her mark by the end of the year. She spent thirty minutes to an hour per night on her English homework. She did not have a tutor to help her at home, but did have a partner to study with. She did not get help from native English speakers or have many English-speaking friends. In class she spoke in English 100% of the time, and out of class she spoke in English only 25% of the time. She was doing fine in her other classes. She was receiving 60% to 70% in her other courses, but there was too much memorization for her to improve her marks. Her goal for learning English was to graduate from high school and enter college or university in Canada. She lived with her mother, step-father, brother and sister in Canada. She was an average (C - B grades) student in El Salvador. She wanted to learn English because she was living in Canada. She wanted to be living in Canada and fit into Canadian society. She found school harder in her home country because she had to take sixteen courses each year. Whereas, in Canada students take eight courses each year. Student G was a sixteen year old female from the Philippines. Her first language was Filipino/Tagalog and she spoke some Spanish. She had lived in Canada for one year and nine months and had received one year of E S L training. She was in mainstream English 11. She felt she was an average student in her English class, did not work very hard, and yet was getting a B letter grade. She felt she would improve her mark by the end of the year if she strived harder. She was a very organized student. Her time spent on her English homework varied throughout the year. She 67 did not have a tutor to help at home and did not get help from other friends with her assignments. She did have many English-speaking friends and spoke in English 70% to 90% of the time. Overall, she was receiving B grades in all her subjects at school. Her goal in learning English was to graduate from high school and go to college or university, whatever was required to meet her career goals. She lived with both her parents and younger sister in Canada. She was an A student in her home country of the Philippines and was a very hard worker because to remain in her school students had to have a 75% average or better. She wanted to be fluent in English for her own sake. She wanted to be living in Canada, speaking in English, and fit into Canadian society. Student H was a sixteen year old male from Taiwan whose first language was Mandarin. He was a former E S L student of mine. According to Student H, he was in Communications 11, rather than regular English 11 because of his low achievement in ESL. He said he had failed grade 10 English because of incomplete assignments. He was currently improving his performance because he was reading and learning the content, concentrating more, and completing assignments. Student I was a sixteen year old Taiwanese male who was in English 11. He was a former ESL student of mine. He had the same English teacher for English 10 and English 11 and was showing great signs of improvement. He was a diligent and outgoing student, who participated even though his English was not perfect. His marks were lower in English 10 than in English 11, which showed he was catching on to the work. Student J was a seventeen year old male from Hong Kong whose first language was Cantonese. He had lived in Canada for seven years and had received five years of ESL instruction. He was a former E S L student of mine and was in Communications 11 rather than English 11 due to the many years of English instruction with very little progress. He viewed himself as an average student and worked hard in his English class. He was currently passing Communications 11 and felt he would improve his 68 mark by the end of the year. He planned to take English 11 in the summer. He felt he was best at reading and worst at writing activities. He spent one to two hours each night on his English homework, and had a tutor to help him. He liked to study with a partner and sometimes received help from friends with his English assignments. He did not get help, however, from English speakers and did not have any English speaking friends. He said he spoke in English 50% of the time in class and 70% of the time outside of class. In his other subjects he was receiving C and B letter grades, except in social studies which he was failing. His goal in learning English was to graduate and go to university and have a better chance of getting a job. He lived with, his mother and sister in Canada. Student J said he did not have difficulty in school in his home country. He wanted to learn English because it helped him a lot to communicate with others. He enjoyed living in Canada, but did not really want to fit into Canadian society. He did, however, want to participate in Canadian activities. For him, school was more difficult in Hong Kong than in Canada because there was more work to do. He found it really relaxed here. He enjoyed learning English, but found it frustrating and slow-going. He acknowledged that he was not very motivated when it came to completing school work. He did, however, have a tutor three times each week to help him. Student K was a sixteen year old male, from Hong Kong, and spoke Cantonese, French, and some English. He had lived in Canada for nine years and had received four years of ESL instruction. He was in English 11. He was a former E S L level 4 student of mine and was one of my top students. He had moved from Montreal and seemed to be very enculturated into Canadian society. He was receiving a B in English 11, but felt he would improve his grade by the end of the year. He spent about 30 minutes each day doing his English homework. He did not have a tutor to help him at home, but did get help from English speaking friends with his school work. He had many English speaking friends. His goal in learning English was to be 69 able to go to university and improve his career opportunities. He wanted to learn English and fit into Canadian society. Student L was an eighteen year old female from Hong Kong. Her first language was Cantonese. She had lived in Canada for five years and had received five years of ESL instruction. She was a former ESL 4 student of mine. She was enrolled in Communications 11. She viewed herself as an average student that worked hard. She said she spent one to two hours each night on her English homework. She did have a tutor at home to help her, studied with a partner, and received help with her English assignments from some English speakers. She did not have any English speaking friends. She spoke in English 50% of the time in-class and 50% of the time outside of class. Her goal in learning English was to go to university in Canada. She did not live with her parents here in Canada because they needed to work in Hong Kong. She wanted to learn English, live in Canada, and fit into Canadian society, but not participate in Canadian activities. Student M was a seventeen year old female from Taiwan. Her first language was Mandarin. She had lived in Canada for four years and had received three years of ESL instruction. She was in English 12. She viewed herself as an average student that worked hard. She was passing English 12, which was an accomplishment for an ESL student. She spent two to three hours each week on her English homework. She did have a tutor to help her at home and she received help from English speaking students. She did not, however, have many English speaking friends. She spoke in English 40% of the time in class and 40% of the time outside of class. She was receiving B or C+ grades in her other subjects. Her goal in learning English was to help her communicate better with Canadians. She lived with both parents here in Canada. She was a B student in Taiwan, but had difficulty with math. She wanted to be living in Canada, speaking in English, fitting into Canadian society, making Canadian friends, and participating in Canadian activities. She found school in Canada more difficult because English was her second language. 70 Student N was a nineteen year old Iranian female whose first languages were Persian and German. She had lived in Canada for five years and had received five years of English instruction. She was in English 11 and was a former E S L student of mine. She viewed herself as an average student that worked hard. She was receiving a C in her English course. She spent two to three hours each week on her English homework. She did receive help with her English assignments from the learning resource teacher in our school and from her English boyfriend outside of school. Her friends were all English speakers. She spoke in English 100% of the time. She was doing well in most of her other classes except for social studies. Her lack of background knowledge of Canadian history and the difficult vocabulary of the textbook were to her difficult obstacles to overcome. Her goal in learning English was to graduate from high school and go to college and university and become a German teacher. She lived with her mother in Canada and her father lived in Iran. She was an average student in Iran (B grades), except she had difficulties with math. She wanted to be living in Canada, learning English, meeting Canadian friends, fitting into Canadian society, and participating in Canadian activities. She found school more difficult in Canada than in Iran or Germany. Student O was an eighteen year old male from Mozambique, Africa whose first language was Swahili and he also spoke some Arabic and Portuguese. He had lived in Canada for six years and had received four years of E S L instruction. He was in English 12. He was a former ESL student of mine. He viewed himself as an above average student that worked very hard. His grade was 83% in his English 12 course. He spent two to three hours each week on his English homework. He did not have a tutor at home to help him, but studied with a partner or group. He had many English speaking friends since he was the star football and basketball player in our school. He spoke in English 100% of the time because his adoptive parents did not speak Swahili. His average was 75% (B grades) in all his classes. His goal in learning English was to be able to go to an American university on a basketball or football 71 scholarship. He was a refugee from Mozambique and thus lived with his adoptive family in Canada. His sister was still in Africa and his parents were killed in the civil war in Mozambique. He could not compare school here with school in Mozambique because he did not go to school in Mozambique. He was very grateful to be living in Canada, learning English, fitting into Canadian society, having Canadian friends, and participating in Canadian activities. He felt his ability in class was good and was improving all the time. He pushed himself, read a lot, was focussed, and went for extra help or tutorials. Student P was a sixteen year old male from Taiwan. His first language was Mandarin. He had lived in Canada for four years and had received two years of ESL instruction. He was in English 11. He viewed himself as an above average student and a hard worker. He was receiving 81% in English 11 and thought he would improve his grade by the end of the year. He spent one hour each night on English homework. He had a tutor to help him with math and science, but not English homework. He usually worked independently, but did ask friends for help sometimes. He rarely received help from English speakers, although he did have English speaking friends. He spoke in English 90% of the time in-class and 40% of the time outside of class. His average in all his subjects was 80% which was a high B grade. His goal for learning English was to attain an average of 86% or higher in order to go to the University of British Columbia. He lived with his mother only because his father worked in Taiwan. He had some difficulty with science at his school in Taiwan. He enjoyed learning English and living in Canada. He wanted to fit into Canadian society, have Canadian friends, and participate in Canadian activities. For him, school was more difficult in Canada because of his language difficulties and the amount of freedom in. school. Student Q was a nineteen year old female from the Philippines who spoke Tagalog as her first language. She had lived in Canada for two and a half years and had received one and a half years of E S L instruction. She was in English 11. She was 72 very shy and embarrassed of her accent when she spoke in English. She viewed herself as an average student who worked quite hard in her English course. Her grade was a B in English and she thought she would improve her grade by the end of the year. She spent thirty minutes to one hour on her English homework each night. She did not have a tutor at home but did receive help from her sister sometimes. She usually studied with a partner. She did not receive help from English speakers and did not have many English speaking friends. She spoke in English 85% of the time when she was in her English class. She was receiving A, B, and C+ letter grades in all her other courses. Her goal for learning English was to enter college or university in Canada. She lived with her mom and sisters here in Canada. Her father was killed in the Philippines. She wanted to learn English, live in Canada, have Canadian friends, fit into Canadian society, and participate in Canadian activities. Canadian school was more difficult in Canada for her because of her language problems. Student R was a sixteen year old male from Taiwan who spoke Mandarin and some English. He had lived in Canada for three and a half years and had received two years of E S L instruction. He was in English 11. He viewed himself as an above average student who worked hard. His grade in English 11 was 88% which was an A grade. He spent about one and a half hours on his English homework each day. He had a tutor for a one hour lesson every two weeks. He studied with a partner and a group. He received help from English speakers during class. He did not have many English speaking friends. In class he spoke in English 95% of the time and outside of class he spoke in English 25% of the time. He was receiving A and B grades in all his other courses which were mostly in science and math. His goal in learning English was to enter university in Canada. He lived with his entire family in Canada. He wanted to be living in Canada because he felt he would receive a well paid job in the future. He wanted to learn English in order to survive in Canada, but it was a lot of work. He wanted to fit into Canadian society, but also wanted to retain his Chinese 73 culture. School was less competitive in Canada for him than it was in Taiwan. Student S was a seventeen year old male from Hong Kong who spoke Cantonese as his first language. He had lived in Canada for six years and had received five years of ESL instruction. He was in English 11. He was receiving a C+ grade in English 11 and B and C+ grades in all his other courses. He spent around one hour each day on his English homework. He studied with a partner, but did not have a tutor at home to help him. He had many English speaking friends and many helped him with his course work. He spoke in English 90% of the time in class and 30% of the time outside of class. His goal in learning English was to go to university in Canada and to make Canadian friends. He lived with his entire family in Canada. He wanted to learn English, fit into Canadian society, live in Canada and participate in Canadian activities. He was a very social person and needed to learn English to expand his social circle. 3.6 Method of Analysis For this research project, I used a variety of qualitative data collection techniques. I journaled my observations in content classrooms. I kept a detailed journal of subjective impressions, description of meetings attended and lessons learned. Along with the journal I collected documents relating to the situation, such as student assignments, tests, and questionnaires using open or closed formats. Also, I interviewed colleagues and students, which allowed the many subtle nuances of unfamiliar perspectives to be explored in detail and clarified. I employed semi-structured interviews. The questions of which are found in Appendix B. I provided written descriptions of meetings and interviews for people involved, in order for them to validate or amend such records. I promptly recorded the exchanges of meetings and interviews in a research journal, making sure that though not verbatim, the participants' words were faithfully paraphrased to reflect their observations and views. Furthermore, I created percentages from student responses to the interview questions. Lastly, I included students' work, written records, and 74 other sorts of documentary information. I used the data as evidence of particular interpretations and explanations of the action. As each action research cycle was completed, I had records of the way in which I monitored and evaluated that cycle. These case records were the data I used to show the 'improvements' that had taken place. I was able to show the progression of events which included my own changing understanding of the situation and reevaluation of the position I held at the start of the research. In addition, I used triangulation which is the process of investigating using a number of different methods in order to make better conclusions that take into account the interpretations (Mcniff, Lomax, & Whitehead, 1996). For example, I employed observations, interviews, questionnaires, and analysis of documents in order to make my interpretations. I used collaborative, reflexive (the process of becoming aware of our own perceptual biases) inquiry into my research question. I created a plural structure, consisting of various accounts and various critiques of those accounts and ending, not with conclusions intended to be convincing, but with questions and possibilities intended to be relevant in various ways for different readers. The purpose of my enquiry was to change what I was doing in the light of how I saw myself influencing my situation. I kept careful records of (a) myself, and how my behaviour and thinking were changing, and (b) representative or significant others, and how I felt their behaviour and thinking was changing. I checked my perceptions with theirs, so if possible to get them to do their own action research, and produce evidence of their progress. I created a data pool, collated my findings and made them available to participants in the research (Mcniff, Lomax, & Whitehead, 1996). I also identified criteria and standards for myself and others to judge if I was being effective. I pulled out of the data, critical incidents which I thought showed these' criteria and standards in action - for example, instances when my E S L support 75 was evident or effective for teachers and ESL students. These could also be regarded as performance indicators - instances of the criteria in action. Alone, I could not make the final judgment about my effectiveness in relation to the educational development of another, so I asked the people who were influenced by the practitioner - me. Only they could say what they meant by 'better'. Thus, I secured firsthand data from other people, and was careful about using it as evidence. For each piece of evidence, I put in dates, places, and people who were present. My data needed to be authenticated, so I received signatures on documents and transcripts, and showed the authorisation for the use of data. I also received authentication from critical friends for my field notes. I ensured that any judgments I made were reasonable, fair and accurate. I was aiming to say something about my improved understanding of my practice; to say that I have tried something new, and I can show the processes and outcomes of this. Others and I needed to agree about what constitutes good practice (the standards and criteria), so that we could agree whether or not my practice had improved, and whether the evidence I had supported my claim. From what we agreed to be good practice, how did we judge whether the work was better now than it was; and how did we test that out? The most reasonable way to test it out was to see if the participants benefited. In other words, as long as I was confident that others shared my view of 'good' practice I could present my work to them, with specific criteria and accompanying evidence. They would scrutinise aspects of my work. This kind of validation was essential in action research. The evidence I produced decided whether or not my explanations could be regarded as valid - I did what I claimed to have done. It was important that the effectiveness of action research was demonstrated in terms of an improvement in the quality of the lives of people with whom it was supposed to be affecting. In other words, this project evaluated the effectiveness of ESL support and integrated content and language instruction in my school community. 76 Chapter 4 Conduct of the Study Chapter four discusses the chronological development of the ESL support program at my secondary school. First of all, the administrative support, initial planning, propaganda campaign, and raising awareness of the ESL support program are presented. Then, providing ESL support to the social studies, English, and ESL departments is discussed. 4.1 Beginnings: Development of the E S L Support Program Being both an ESL and social studies teacher since 1994 in my secondary school, I was chosen along with two other colleagues to develop an ESL support program for the ESL level five students in mainstream classes. My ESL support colleagues and I were all language specialists, having ESL and English language training. As a team, we designed a program which provided language services for both ESL level five students and their content teachers. We hoped to provide an easier transition from ESL courses into the mainstream for many ESL students and their teachers. Our vision for ESL support in our school was fortunately shared by our administration, many teachers and ESL students. It was this vision that I decided to investigate in my research study. 4.2 A d m i n i s t r a t i v e Suppor t Fortunately, the administration was extremely supportive of my new role as an ESL support teacher. After approaching my principal and vice principal with my action research proposal to work with level five ESL students (ESL students who had finished the ESL program) in their mainstream classes, the administrators offered me this new job description. As an ESL support teacher, I was able to conduct research with colleagues and students during my work day. This role legitimised my research endeavours and provided opportunities for involvement by my colleagues and their students. 77 I greatly appreciated the administration's support. The administrators, however, also benefited from this arrangement. They needed to provide language services to E S L level five students because of a government mandate and funding from the B . C . Ministry of Education, and the apparent needs of both content teachers and ESL students. My new job description as an E S L support teacher fit the particulars of this support position. In the process of working with teachers and E S L students, my role as an ESL support teacher was defined for myself, my school, and my research study. This was a new position created from funding by the B .C. Ministry of Education to support ESL students once they entered the mainstream. There were three E S L support positions at our secondary school. I was a part-time E S L and social studies teacher. The two other E S L support teachers included an ESL/French teacher and a resource teacher. Their credentials included language teaching overseas, department head position for ESL, and a doctorate in reading. We were a very effective and cohesive team. Al l of us were new to this position in September 1998 and were given liberty by our administration and direction from our Richmond school district to design an E S L support strategy for our school community. The expectation of our administration was simply to divide our energies between three departments - social studies, English and science. These three academic courses were the most troublesome for E S L students because of the high language demands. I was working with both the social studies and English departments. My two colleagues were working with the English and Science departments. Furthermore, the administration encouraged our E S L support team to promote co-teaching and co-planning with content teachers. 4.3 Initial Planning In the initial planning of our support program in September 1998 we, the three support teachers, discussed our concerns about our clients - teachers and students. We knew that there would be three kinds of teachers and students in our 78 school: (1) those who would want to work with us and seek us out, (2) those who would want to work with us, but would not approach us, and (3) those who would be either reluctant or closed to the idea of support. We wondered if teacher or student reluctance would be based on fear of our observations, criticism, change, or lack of information. Initially, our ESL support position was created to help only the ESL level 5 students in their mainstream classes. In other words, that was who the money from the provincial government was designated for. We, however, felt that the support would be better delivered and received if we worked with teachers and also with all the ESL students, regardless of their level, in the mainstream classes. We felt that the needs were so great and the ESL students so many, that our energies would be far better 'utilised by focussing on teacher-interaction in order to impact the most students. We wanted to show that we were making changes with teachers. We wanted to title our documentation of ESL support this year "Our Journey", rather than "Our Successes". We realised we were going to grow along with this job position. We recognised the potential for success was great, but also was failure. Being proactive and optimistic, we were encouraged to start trying to make a difference in our school. 4.4 Publicity Our next step was to focus on publicity for ESL support in our school. We wrote a letter to the teachers to explain our role as support teachers and to clarify information. In other words, we wanted to emphasize the fact that we were not to be over-paid classroom assistants. We wanted to inform teachers of the ESL culture of our school, who the ESL students were, and why teachers needed our support. After three drafts and much consultation with our ESL support team and the administration, we submitted the letters to the three departments at their department meetings. At the department meetings we also spoke about our role in the school this year, answered any questions, and listened to the concerns of the teachers. In our 79 meetings we discussed E S L reading levels, need for E S L support, services, frustrations, and immediate strategies. My colleagues wanted E S L students identified and ideas for presenting content, besides "chalk and talk". Furthermore, at a staff meeting, our E S L support team gave a presentation on E S L support to further promote our services. As an E S L support team, we also needed to clarify for teachers what the ESL levels meant (see Appendix E). We discussed in our letter and presentation at our second staff meeting the approximation of E S L levels with native speakers' reading levels (see Appendix E). In other words, our E S L department approximated that ESL 3 was similar to a grade four reading level. ESL 4 was similar to a grade six reading level and E S L 5 was similar to a grade eight reading level. Many mainstream teachers were surprised by how low the reading level equivalents were for E S L students and that E S L level 5 students were not fluent or near native speakers! Whenever possible, we would explain to teachers the approximate number of years it takes for an E S L student to acquire cognitive academic language proficiency (Cummins, 1984) - five to seven years! 4.5 Raising Awareness Our next step (October 1998) was to identify the E S L students in each mainstream class for teachers on their class lists. This had never been done before and we felt when teachers saw the number of E S L students they were teaching that year, their level of concern might increase enough to seek our help. For instance, in some social studies and science classes, ninety percent of the students were E S L , levels one to five. We thought that by identifying the E S L students for teachers, the teachers might be open to having us provide E S L support. 4.6 Providing ESL Support To provide support to the E S L level five students in their mainstream English and social studies classrooms, I was involved in co-planning, co-teaching, and providing in-service opportunities for the teachers. My services included 8 0 workshops or seminars in order to highlight some support strategies which have worked successfully in my classroom, in many other language and content courses, and were supported by the research. Our next challenge was how to get into our colleagues' classrooms, since we had not yet been invited. We had not received any memos from teachers to come to observe their classrooms, despite our letters, presentations, and workshops. We all felt like we had done much of the up-front work, but were now waiting...waiting for an invitation. We decided to speak to teachers individually about classroom visitations and this seemed somewhat intimidating. Therefore, we first went to speak to colleagues that were our friends to start this process of visitations. One of my colleagues who was a friend of mine, was open to having me come to observe her ESL students, but was unsure about my role in her classroom. After several presentations to the staff, departments, and individual letters, I was surprised that this colleague was still unsure about my ESL support role. This made me realise that I needed to get into the classrooms and make a difference for the teachers and ESL students in order to attain some credibility. Teachers would then talk to one another to promote my work. My next idea was to set up appointments with each social studies teacher to come to their classrooms and if I did not hear back from them, then I would just show up. Thus, my calendar became very booked with appointments. I tried to set aside two weeks for each of the eight teachers. 4.7 ESL Support of the Social Studies Department My first classroom visitations involved interviewing students to find out what their difficulties were with the subject matter and then giving them support strategies. Along with providing strategies for students, I wrote up reports for teachers to let them know what their ESL students were struggling with and then some suggestions to support their learning. Along with interviews, I was able to observe the ESL students' level of interaction with their peers, their participation, their level of frustration, and some of their coping strategies. I also collected 81 background information about each E S L student to inform their teachers. Furthermore, I commended the teachers for strategies which they utilised in their teaching practice which would support E S L learners and suggested other strategies to be tried. For example, I suggested (1) using prereading strategies such as key visuals to activate background knowledge, (2) using key visuals to lower the language barrier when teaching the content, (3) giving students the vocabulary they need before the lesson, (4) being explicit in your teaching, (5) providing the language needed by students to understand the content, and (6) if a teacher was teaching using key visuals, then he or she should try testing using key visuals. Sensing the need for more information on E S L teaching strategies, I organised a small package for the social studies department which explained the basics of the ILC instruction method called the Knowledge Framework and its application to social studies. I then followed up this package with a workshop on teaching and learning strategies for E S L students with the social studies department. In more detail, I covered the reasons for the ILC approach and the mainstreaming of E S L students into content classrooms. I also showed the potential of key visuals, language support for writing paragraphs and essays and reading the text, writing genres, assessment and evaluation, and some general information on E S L students needs. To follow up these handouts, I was invited by the social studies department head to provide a short workshop to the social studies department on E S L teaching practices. I discussed how to integrate content and second language development. I remarked that much research shows that E S L students learn best when language and content are integrated. Thus, content teaching without language support results in difficulties for both the content teacher and E S L learner. I was also involved with one of my ESL support colleagues in developing a handout to give to mainstream teachers with suggestions to help their E S L students. It showed in graphic form some key strategies to help E S L learners. I used this handout in many further discussions with teachers or during workshops which I 82 conducted. I also organized an afternoon meeting for the grade eight social studies teachers to discuss 1. course content, 2. new text books, 3. evaluation procedures, 4. learning outcomes for the course, 5. teaching activities, and 6. learning strategies for E S L students. In other words, I addressed their primary concerns and then made time to discuss teaching strategies for ESL students. To follow up the meeting, I found a teacher's guide which went with our grade eight social studies text book. This teacher's guide was full of graphic organisers and seemed to reinforce all that I had discussed at the meeting. With regard to my E S L support for E S L students in social studies classes, I used two major strategies. First, I provided a one week, three hour session on "How You Can Be Successful in Social Studies" to the entire social studies department. With the students, I discussed learning strategies for using their textbooks, understanding the overall course content, completing homework assignments, writing multiple-choice, short-answer, or essay tests, completing in-class assignments, working with a partner or group, listening to the teacher, taking notes, organising their binder, study skills, and time management. The students for the most part were very receptive and viewed me as coming to help them be more successful in social studies. I had spoken with many of these students outside their classrooms, too. I felt like I had met at least half the students in our school through these classroom workshops. In the social studies classrooms that I visited, I was involved in various activities. After I provided whole-class workshops on learning strategies and study skills, I worked with small groups of E S L students in order to explain content matter to them in graphic form. I also listened to the teacher's lectures, took notes in graphic form, and then photocopied my notes for the E S L students. Furthermore, I helped the E S L students highlight the key ideas in the handouts or take good notes from videos. My second strategy was to ask teachers to give me a list of all their E S L students 83 who were failing their courses and I would come and pull these students out in pairs to go over their work with them. Teachers and students were most grateful for this service, however, both wished I was available more often. I was able to monitor the progress of 28 students on my list. I also provided graphic organisers of entire courses or chapters in a textbook for social studies. Students found these graphic organisers very useful. They could see the big picture before they delved into the details of their texts or course content. It helped, of course, that I had taught these courses myself in previous years and was therefore familiar with the content. There were many flowcharts and time lines drawn for social studies classes and individual students. In one particular class, I pulled a group of ten ESL students together to discuss the course overview, note-taking from class lectures and text, working together, and participating in class. One student said to me that she wished I had come in September, rather than February. Lastly, some of my time was spent working with ESL students on their lack of organisational skills. Learning a second language and being unorganised was a deadly combination for some students. For the most part, the level of language in the social studies text books was too high for the ESL students and their lack of background knowledge made comprehension extremely difficult. The ESL students who were passing social studies usually worked with native speakers, had tutors at home, or were taking the course for a second time. Unfortunately, most of the ESL students I spoke with were working all alone on their social studies work, without the support of even one friend. For example, for some of these struggling students, I reviewed how to study with a partner, make study guides, seek help from their teachers, read their text book, take notes, and write their tests. In general, the teachers and the ESL students were very receptive to my support and advice. 4.8 ESL Support of the English Department In my quest to support English and social studies teachers, in particular, using the Knowledge Framework, I was able to incorporate my Literature Through the 84 Knowledge Framework (LTKF) unit into some senior English courses (see Appendix F). This L T K F unit had been my reference point for many discussions with English teachers. I had presented the unit in graphic form and had given the unit to many English teachers. Once I had explained the principles behind the unit, the teachers seemed keen to apply parts of the unit which made sense in their teaching context. Some of the English teachers realised that they were already applying some of the strategies of the Knowledge Framework, but could now see a more systematic way of implementing more of the Framework into their courses. For example, an opportunity arose between December 1998 and March 1999 to work with one teacher who taught English and literature to grade eleven and twelve students. She sought out my help, along with my other E S L support colleague who was also a resource teacher. She was concerned with the low level of English proficiency in her classes, especially in grade twelve. She did not know how these students arrived in her classroom or how they could possibly pass the English course. She sought assistance and asked for teaching strategies for these low-level E S L level 5 students. At our initial meeting, we discussed the problems with sending work home and it being completed by tutors or copied from the internet. We also discussed how many of the ESL students in her classes had taken short cuts in their language training to get into English 12. Many had taken English 11 courses at summer school and barely passed. Also, many of her students had exceeded their number of years of E S L instruction (five years) and thus were exited/sent into the mainstream English courses. Also, some of these E S L students were passed into Communications courses instead of English courses, but had somehow been registered in regular English courses. In other words, many E S L students were in her class, but were not ready to be there. We discussed some strategies for teaching novels, composition, graphics, and evaluation. Fortunately, some of her E S L level 5 students I had taught in previous 85 years in the ESL program. Therefore, I knew their abilities and personalities. These ESL students felt comfortable working with me. With regard to this teacher's concern about evaluation, we contacted another English teacher for her to meet with and review her standards of grading. She found this very helpful. She also met with another ESL teacher who taught senior ESL courses in order to compare the grading standards. This English and ESL teacher even traded classes for a week to see what the ESL levels were for the students. They found this exchange very beneficial. While working in this English 12 class I was involved in many activities. I helped with the lack of background knowledge for content related to their novel studies or poems. I provided strategies for the students to enable them to interpret poems. I also aided groups of ESL students in explaining the elements of literature, such as theme, in graphic form. I worked on public speaking and research skills. I analyzed language samples from English speakers' assignments in the class to help the ESL students see what an " A " assignment looked like. Lastly, I was able to speak with their teacher in order to aid in evaluation of ESL writing activities and provide insights on the ESL students' difficulties. The English teacher and I had many discussions about teaching and learning strategies for ESL students, especially our lowest achievers. The English teacher used inclusive questioning skills which engaged all her students, including the ESL students. The ESL students would respond slowly and softly to her questions. Then one day we had a discussion about using a "talking stick" or a "conch" to control the flow of class discussion or conversation. The next class the students were using the "conch", which was actually a stuffed animal, in order to speak in class. A l l students got a chance to speak and were required to participate. This was a successful lesson! I also suggested using more small group work because most of the discussions in this class seemed to be with the entire class. I felt that small group discussions were very valuable to get students speaking without the wait time or possible embarrassment in a whole-class discussion. Furthermore, with regard to writing, the 86 English teacher gave out several handouts which explained all that was required in an essay. These handouts needed to be explained to the ESL students because of the sophistication of the language. Lastly, this English teacher wrote her instructions or answers to homework or class work on the overhead projector. I knew that especially the ESL students appreciated the effort she took to write down important information. This was very beneficial for the students who could not keep up with the pace of the oral discussions. In conclusion, my initial plan for working with this grade twelve English class was to co-teach the class. What resulted was my teaching of the ESL students in one group, while the English teacher worked with the rest of the class. I also worked with individual ESL students to address their needs. Along with working with the students, I was able to have some pedagogical discussions with the English teacher. We discussed several teaching and learning strategies for her English classroom. At first, she was reluctant to implement these strategies with the entire class. She preferred me to use them with the ESL students. She did not want me to "insult the intelligences of the native speakers" by using such strategies as graphics. The native speakers could "be upset and find it a waste of time". Eventually, however, this English teacher saw the value of the strategies I used with the ESL students and wanted to implement them with the entire class. We read through books and handouts from my classroom and found wonderful graphics developed for teaching elements of literature. Our differing opinions on pedagogy slowly merged. This was a rewarding experience. Furthermore, I was able to provide support for Teacher C s ESL students in her English 11 and 12 courses. These ESL students seemed to be doing fine because there was routine to her class. The students participated in their reader-response journals. Her motto was "less is more". In other words, the students did less writing, but really focussed on skills and techniques, rather than volume. There was a lot of oral work and presentations. The group work conducted by the teacher was beneficial for the 87 E S L students. 4.8.1 Development of the Literature Through the Knowledge Framework U n i t The Literature Through the Knowledge Framework (LTKF) unit (see Appendix F) was an instrument used for my research of mainstream English classrooms. One intent of my research study was to assess the effectiveness of this ILC unit with E S L learners and their content teachers. I designed this unit in 1997 in response to the increasing ethnically diverse population of students with varying degrees of English ability in my secondary school. These E S L students needed effective language and content instruction in order to survive in their classes and fuel their intellects. This unit was one approach to meeting the needs of E S L students from various linguistic and cultural backgrounds. I desired students to have learning experiences that were appropriate to their intellectual levels regardless of their level of English proficiency. My hope was that the teaching of literature and language could be integrated in order to empower E S L learners. Discussions with a 'critical friend' (Mcniff, Lomax, & Whitehead, 1996), an E S L colleague, led to the design of this literature-based ILC unit based largely on the Knowledge Framework and genre theory. Literature, composition, speaking, and listening activities were organised according to the Framework. My colleague was very keen to be involved in my research and then the design of a unit plan. Her expertise as an E S L instructor and use of the Knowledge Framework were a great help in the creation of this unit. Involving our E S L students in the process was also beneficial. Our students assessed the clarity and logic of the presentation of the unit and its importance and usefulness in language learning. Collaboration with my E S L colleague, for the purpose of integrating literature with language aims using the Knowledge Framework as our guide, was rewarding. We explored the possibilities of fuller integration of the Knowledge Framework into our own curriculum and taught others how to do the same. Our results proved the 88 success of collaborative teaching of two teachers who used the Knowledge Framework for teacher collaboration. I would like the Knowledge Framework to continue to be the basis for collaboration among E S L and mainstream teachers. The following research was selected to assess the theoretical background for creating an integrated literature and language learning unit (Purves & Monson, 1984; Probst, 1984; Collie & Slater, 1987; Royster, 1991; Norton, 1992) based on the Knowledge Framework (Mohan, 1986) and Genre Theory (Carrel, 1985; Derewianka, 1990; Halliday, 1994; Reppen, 1994; Henry & Roseberry, 1998; Feez, 1998; Christie, 1999). The design of the L T K F unit plan focussed mainly on the "how" or the application of these theories for the purpose of supporting E S L students in the English department. For the L T K F unit, literature activities were classified and organised into the six knowledge structures (KSs) from the Knowledge Framework. The thinking skills were underlined for each activity, except for the activities which had the thinking skills implied. There was much room for flexibility and creativity for both teachers and students in these suggested activities. For example, for the knowledge structure "description" one activity was "make comparisons using metaphors and similes" and another activity was "cartoon (thinking and speaking bubbles)" where the thinking skills of labelling and describing were implied. Furthermore, questions to guide student research of a topic were included under the activities list. Also, a variety of "frame questions" were provided. The graphics or key visuals displayed in the unit were also classified and organised into the six knowledge structures. The graphics came from a variety of excellent sources such as well-recommended books, colleagues' ideas, and my own designs. Once a certain graphic was tried and proved to be an excellent learning tool, then it was incorporated into this unit. The language section of the unit was based on the language of the Knowledge Framework. In addition to the language or discourse structures presented by Mohan 89 (1986), I included a list of transition words, key markers, or logical connectors. This list aided students in their writing and was mostly additional information. In addition, the graphics (Mohan, 1986) revealed the KSs in text structures (e.g., narrative). Thus, texts could be classified by their KSs. Furthermore, text genres also "fit" nicely into the six KSs. For example, the genre of an information report both described and classified information. Therefore, students saw that information reports used the KSs of description and classification. Along with the addition of suggested activities to use with our literature-based program, we included a writing component to our unit. Text structures such as types of paragraphs and essays were added. Each text structure was given an explanation. Most of the genres included in the unit were identified in systemic functional grammar (Derewianka, 1990; Halliday, 1994). This approach to teaching text structure or genre was adapted from Halliday's (1994) systemic linguistic theory and parallels Mohan's (1986) Knowledge Framework approach. This approach was also elaborated as a set of text structures which guided the use of written discourse, especially academic discourse. Furthermore, the functions of academic writing were realised by their genre structure. These genre structures were included and explained in the L T K F unit. For example, for each genre, the purpose, text organisation, and language features were explicitly identified. Also, the composition section explored many types of writing possibilities, besides the narrative genre. I felt it was important for students to move beyond the narrative and explore other genres in their use of literature. This unit may appear too analytic, however, we made room for the exploration, imagination, and creativity needed in engaging with literature. The unit organised the activities in a logical, yet creative manner for the students, and also the teacher. Teachers could use this as a lesson-planning guide. I feel, however, that the students should be let into the process and have access to the unit's charts. Our unit did not, however, provide guidelines for what sort of literature should 90 be used with one's language learners. The criteria of suitability clearly depended on the particular group of students, their needs, interests, cultural backgrounds, and language levels. Some primary factors to consider, however, were whether the chosen literary work would stimulate the learner's personal involvement, and would the language difficulty of the work be too far above their normal reading ability (Collie & Slater, 1987; Norton, 1992; Probst, 1984; Purves & Monson, 1984; Royster, 1991). In practice, students using the L T K F unit received prereading strategies to activate their background knowledge in order to increase their chances of comprehending the text. For example, through many reading experiences, students learned how to approach the reading of different literary genres such as folk tale, fantasy and poetry. Therefore, teachers needed to develop guidelines to help students read, comprehend, and respond to the various genres of literature. The L T K F unit was one attempt at providing these guidelines for teachers and E S L students. 4.9 ESL Support of the ESL Department Along with E S L support, I volunteered time to be my E S L colleague's mentor teacher. Our school district promoted first year teachers to connect with one other teacher and use the time as a mentorship. Consequently, I promoted Integrated Language and Content Instruction within our E S L department by meeting with my ESL colleagues, especially my mentoree. Along with meetings, I had my E S L classes observed each week by my mentoree. These observations were the most beneficial for mentor and mentoree because all the discussions about teaching practices were applied to real-life situations. Many lunch hour meetings with the ESL department transpired on the topic of ILC instruction. My hope was that the E S L department could speak the same language when it came to teaching strategies. When mainstream teachers needed help, they could approach any E S L teacher in our school and see consistency in teaching practices/pedagogy. This was not entirely accomplished, but that was to be expected since teachers have professional autonomy 9 1 over their teaching practices. What was especially curious in my school was the fact that so little dialogue had occurred between the E S L and English departments. I was not sure why these teachers had not taken the initiative to collaborate since they shared similar concerns. Systemic problems, perhaps, had perpetuated this lack of communication. The E S L teachers were primarily outside the school in portables while the English teachers taught inside the building. Most teachers taught in two departments, so they could be located anywhere in or out of the school. Even at staff meetings and professional development days, E S L and English teachers would be cordial, but would not 'talk shop'. They had not made it a priority, which was my concern since both the E S L and English departments shared many of the same students and issues. I hoped my action research project would create some bridges for teachers in both departments. Continued dialogue between teachers after the project was completed, was my goal for action research. 92 Chapter 5 OBSERVATIONS Chapter five reports on the findings, referred to as observations, of the study. Due to the nature of the action research model, observations were made during the third stage of the cyclical process of planning, action, observation/ evaluation, and reflection (Mcniff, Lomax, & Whitehead, 1996). The observations include a definition of the E S L support role , effectiveness of the E S L support program, teacher collaboration, application of the ILC approach and the Knowledge Framework, challenges and issues for content teachers and E S L level five students, and the dual role as support teacher and researcher. 5.1 ESL Support Role Defined 5.1.1 As Perceived by Self: ESL support teachers are language development specialists who act as consultants to both teachers and ESL students, with a focus on co-teaching. My role as an E S L support teacher evolved during this research study. Initially, the administration was instrumental in defining some of our job description and articulating this to our support team and our staff. After the E S L support team's promotional work in explaining our services to our staff and our identification of the E S L five students in the school, however, we were disappointed with both the lack of response to our services and the confusion around our job description. Due to the context of our school community, which was extremely busy and continually faced with changes, the poor response from our staff may have been expected. Therefore, instead of promoting myself as a co-teacher, I invited myself into as many social studies and English classrooms as possible to help the E S L students. Teachers who saw my work with the E S L students were impressed. As a result, conversations about E S L students and pedagogy flowed naturally from being present 93 in the classroom. Some co-teaching occurred, but I mostly helped the E S L students by teaching seminars to the whole class, small groups, or providing individual instruction. My role became very flexible based on each teacher's wishes. I presented myself as having a specialist role. I was, however, amenable to the requests of each teacher. Flexibility and accessibility were the keys to success for E S L support in content classrooms. Confidence in one speciality area and the content area must be evidenced in order to attain credibility from the teacher and students. Furthermore, being an outgoing teacher who had developed relationships with the staff over a period of five years was very beneficial to my role. 5.1.2 As Perceived by Administrators: ESL support teachers are language specialists who promote co-teaching with content instructors and provide individual instruction for ESL students. Initially, the administration met with each candidate for the position of E S L support and discussed our vision for the program. I felt very supported by their enthusiastic response to my suggestions. They were open to my suggestions of my role as a consultant. They promoted my role as an E S L specialist to the entire staff and staff meetings. They wanted my role to be accountable to the staff and students. They were very impressed with the seminars and workshops which I held for English, E S L , and social studies teachers. Therefore, I was entrusted with this large responsibility and basically left alone to define myself in our school community. 5.1.3 As Perceived by Colleagues: The ESL support team are ESL trained teachers who must prove their effectiveness through action and not words in content teachers' classrooms. Teachers wanted to see action; therefore, our E S L support team earnestly tried to get into as many classrooms as possible despite scheduling constraints (ie. time table), and teacher skepticism. There was some criticism of our E S L support position due to the limited number of E S L support blocks/hours and part-time E S L support staff. Some colleagues felt our work would only be a "band aid" solution 94 because of our few blocks. At this time, I was given nine hours per week and my ESL support, colleagues were each given three hours per week. We did not let the time schedule defeat us, but were ready to be flexible with teachers and even use more teacher-interaction funds to meet with teachers when it was convenient for them. Furthermore, Teacher B felt that the most significant factor in her E S L students' success in her English courses was their self-motivation, confidence to ask questions, and E S L support from the school. In addition, she said that she needed much more support from the E S L support teacher, but realized the limitations of our timetables. She had seven blocks of English, and I had only two blocks for E S L support of the English department and my other E S L support colleague had one block of E S L support. Thus, we did not have enough time to reach all her classes, let alone all the other English teachers' classes. In addition, Teacher B made several comments about what was most challenging for her as a participant in the E S L support program. At first she was confused about what to do to receive support for her E S L students in her classes. She was also unsure about what the support could do for her and her students. She felt that she needed to take a risk and meet with the E S L support team. She would be opening her classroom up for observation which could be daunting. She strongly believed teachers need to share more, advocate more for their students, and learn to be open with their struggles in order to get help. Moreover, according to Teachers C and D, more administrative support from our Principal and Vice-Principals needed to be given to this issue. Teacher C felt that teachers too easily accept the status-quo, even though they were unhappy with it. 5.1.4 As Perceived by ESL Level Five Students: ESL support teachers are ESL instructors who are a welcome support or unwelcome intruders. The E S L students perceived an ESL support teacher in a variety of ways. Depending upon whether the students were former students of mine, whether the content teacher promoted my credentials and work, and whether the students were 9 5 comfortable with their label as E S L students, their perceptions of my role varied. I was either viewed as a welcome support or as an intruder. Most E S L students, however, were very receptive to my services and even desperately sought out my support. One student commented to me that she wished I had come to help her much sooner. Al l my former students were greatly relieved to see my presence in their classroom. They respected my credentials and knew me as a "good" teacher. I had taught all of the grades in social studies and had worked previously with all the grades in the English department. My former students were even promoting my work to other E S L students. On the other hand, a minority of E S L students, who strongly disliked the label of E S L student and were trying to hide the fact that they had difficulties with the English language, were upset by my offer of support. These E S L students were concerned that their English-speaking peers would think less of them if they were known as E S L students. They viewed my support as an insult and wanted me to either disappear or be extremely discreet. These students who were not receptive to my role as an E S L support teacher were not former students of mine. 5.1.5 Tension in Perceptions: Differing perceptions of the ESL support role existed amongst ESL support teachers and content instructors. Tension in perceptions of my role as an E S L support teacher was evidenced mostly between content teachers and myself. The administration and E S L students, for the most part, were very receptive to my role any way I chose to define it. The staff, however, were more difficult to convince of the merits of my role as an E S L specialist in their classrooms. I needed to prove my worth with action, rather than words. Seminars, workshops, presentations, literature of our services, were not enough. My validity was shown once I entered the classrooms. Confusion and skepticism of my role did lessen as the year progressed. I did, however, need to be open to teachers' comments, suggestions, and their wishes for my role in their classrooms. Eventually, teachers did speak to one another and promote my work. 96 Tension in perceptions was inevitable, but with persistent dialogue and effective action the tensions subsided and grew into a collaboration of ideas. 5.2 E S L Support Effectiveness 5.2.1 As Perceived by Self: The ESL support team provided exceptional support services to content teachers and ESL students. As a result of our ESL support program, E S L students knew that there was a support team ready to help them at any time. Teachers knew that they were not alone in teaching E S L students and that support was provided. The administrators were grateful to be able to help both teachers and students through this E S L support team. Despite the initial hesitancy by the staff to utilise our services and the part-time status of each E S L support teacher, the year was very successful. The entire social studies, English, and science departments received support by our E S L support team. Teachers in these departments received identification of all their E S L students in their content classes. Support was provided in a flexible manner to best suit each classroom. Workshops, seminars, co-teaching, small group and individual support was provided for teachers and their ESL students. I felt at times like an ambulance service in our school, providing short-term emergency service. At other times I felt like a physician providing long-term care. At our final staff meeting of the year, our E S L support team received a standing ovation. I was moved by the staff's appreciation. 5.2.2 As Perceived by Administrators: The ESL support program was so effective that it should be a model for the school district. As an E S L support team, we have received nothing but praise and appreciation from our administrators. We have been applauded at staff meetings and in person. The administration was so impressed with our level of service to the school, that word got out to the board office of our school district and they asked to meet with our ESL support team to learn how we designed our program. The school board regarded our 9 7 ESL support so highly that they used our E S L support team as a model for the district. In addition, other E S L support teachers from other secondary schools were encouraged to meet with our team and learn about our program. Thus, we met with teachers from other schools and spoke at district interaction meetings. Although we were not comfortable with the notoriety, we did feel grateful that our work was valued. 5.2.3 As Perceived by Colleagues: The ESL support team was initially regarded with skepticism, but was increasingly valued. In general, our E S L support team was regarded as very effective by our staff. There was initial skepticism and confusion, but as the year progressed there were more teachers who expressed their appreciation and respect. Teaching can be a thankless profession, but we received many thank yous. An example of my effectiveness with teachers was demonstrated after a morning seminar given to the resource and E S L departments. According to one of my colleagues who attended this seminar, she said that the information and handouts which I gave out to the group were "gold mines". She was so excited to pass on this information to her students in the resource department. Teacher-interaction funds were used to pay for this morning seminar for the E S L and resource departments. I conducted the seminar for six teachers. The topics for the seminar included Integrated Language and Content Instruction, The Knowledge Framework, Key Visuals, Writing Genres and Knowledge Framework Connections, my Literature Through the Knowledge Framework unit, E S L resources, and Evaluation Strategies. Thus, one of my goals as an E S L support teacher was to instruct other teachers in E S L teaching strategies. With regard to the English department, my effectiveness was evaluated by the four English teachers who volunteered to be interviewed. Teachers A and B were asked what were the three most important things they learned from their participation with the E S L support team. These two teachers mentioned 1. their 98 better understanding of E S L students in their context; 2. the importance of visuals such as graphics; and 3. the fact that they were not alone with their feelings of frustration. There was a support system available to help these English teachers. The master teacher, Teacher A , noted that the Knowledge Framework and the Integrated Language and Content approach were very valid teaching approaches and not over simplified or "too young" for high school students. Both teachers felt confident and enjoyed using the graphics in their teaching. Teacher B had even shared some of her graphics with another E S L teacher in the school. These two teachers also commented on what was most rewarding for them as participants of E S L support. Both teachers mentioned that they now had new graphics from me to use in their classes and their belief in the value of graphics and visuals had been reinforced. I was able to meet with Teacher B several times to discuss in particular the Knowledge Framework and the importance of teaching the language to support each knowledge structure or graphic. These teachers also shared their work with graphics with me. I acquired some valuable graphic organizers for my resources. (e.g.,. graphics to explain point of view and a graphic overview for the novel Chrysalids). Next, both teachers were asked how they would improve the E S L support provided for them and their E S L students. Both teachers commented on how they needed support in all their classes, especially in English 12. Teacher B mentioned the importance of one-on-one instruction for her E S L students. She saw this individual instruction as essential to learning the English language and not provided for in the regular classroom. Because of the quick pace of instruction in English, E S L students needed the support to bring them up to speed with the rest of the class. 5.2.4 As Perceived by ESL Level 5 Students: The ESL support program was very helpful, especially the individual instruction. According to the E S L students interviewed, the E S L support helped them a great deal in their mainstream English classes especially with poetry investigation, 99 essay writing, and developing graphics. When asked what was the most helpful from the E S L support team, 1 0 % of the E S L students interviewed said the in-class assistance with interpreting poetry and short stories. Also, editing essays, providing graphic organizers especially to help understand themes from the novels of poems, making flowcharts, diagrams, and webbing to increase comprehension of ideas from the novel were most helpful. In addition, one-on-one attention for editing writing and learning about grammar mistakes was valuable. These E S L students also provided suggestions to improve the E S L support given to them this year in their mainstream classes. They said to focus on writing, be aware of the different styles between teachers, and the in-class support was very helpful because of the immediacy of the problems and the need for a solution. 5.3 Teacher Collaboration/Interaction: Collaboration increased over time as ESL support specialists worked in cooperative relationships with content teachers. As an E S L support team, we saw that our levels of involvement in teachers' classrooms progressed as we worked in cooperative relationships. We started with our presence in their classrooms and moved up eventually to some co-teaching. In seeking to work with other content teachers, I had to give the impression that having E S L support in the classroom would be less work for the teacher. Teachers were normally too busy at work to take on one more task. I really felt, however, that I could help teachers be more efficient and have less work to do, especially with their E S L students, by having me in their classroom. Some teachers did not have time for formal meetings and so my "meetings" tended to be during class time, while the students were working on an assignment or I would "meet" with teachers during lunch in the staff room. These were very informal and non-threatening meetings. We were planning in the classroom. For example, I explained for one teacher how to do a cooperative jigsaw activity with his students. For another teacher, I showed him how to conduct student-self assessment and criteria-based assessment practices in his 100 classroom. As an E S L support team, we also sought to bring the English and the E S L departments together to discuss common issues and concerns. There was little communication between English and E S L teachers in the past and yet their concerns were so similar. According to Teacher A, she thought that a gap between the English and E S L departments should never have existed. Their concerns and issues were so similar and many of their students were the same. Team-teaching should have existed to support these E S L students and their teachers. They had the same clientele and similar course content. A gap between the departments did exist because there still was a referral to E S L students as "them". In other words, there needed to be a shared responsibility for E S L students between the E S L and English departments. Answering this same question, Teacher A commented that she wondered if the E S L teachers were supposed to teach a bridging class (ESL to English), or be a recycled English teacher. She saw a lack of cohesiveness in the English and E S L departments and also wondered about criteria for evaluation of E S L student writing. According to Teacher B, when asked whether a gap had been bridged between the English and E S L departments in some way through the E S L support team, she commented that yes there had been some progress in this area. For example, when she first started teaching, she did not know who was in her English department. English teachers seemed to be in several departments in the school and therefore had difficulty attending English department meetings. She questioned the amount of communication between English teachers. She discovered that Macbeth , for example, was being taught in both grade ten and eleven due to a lack of communication between teachers. Therefore, an E S L support teacher, like myself, introduced this teacher to other English teachers, and also initiated several ESL/English department meetings in order to have everyone together to discuss common issues around teaching ESL students. Teacher C felt that the gap between E S L and English depended on who was 101 teaching the E S L or the English course. In other words, gaps or walls were created by individuals, rather than departments. Furthermore, Teacher C did mention that the gap between the E S L department and the rest of the school staff was lessening due to the E S L support Team's work in our school that year. Some teachers were still unaware of our services, but this was not due to lack of communication. Teacher C believed that teachers needed to be willing to close the gap. Unfortunately, the perceived gap between the two departments had existed for so long, that for some teachers this year's attempts to bridge the gap with our E S L support team had been regarded with some skepticism. Despite many attempts, some successful and others not, of getting the two departments together to discuss our common concerns, some teachers still did not see value in discussing common issues. With regard to the E S L and resource departments, which both shared similar clients, there was also a gap due to the departments working in isolation. These two departments were integral to each other and the rest of the school. Having one resource teacher on our E S L support team, enabled the E S L and Resource departments to work together to share ideas, resources, knowledge, and time. For example, many of the highest risk E S L students were also on the resource teachers' case loads. These E S L / L D students were extremely needy and their content teachers needed help to teach them. Thus, with the E S L and resource teachers teaming together to address the content teachers' and E S L / L D students' needs, it was a more effective force in the school. 5.4 Application of the ILC Approach: The ILC approach was selectively, and at times superficially, implemented in content courses. Most English teachers I worked with did not seem to have the time to fully explore the Knowledge Framework. Instead of going through the entire L T K F unit with me, they wanted to hear about generalities and then look over the unit on their own time. This L T K F unit, however, could be implemented over several years, each year the teacher finding something new to try. 102 Most change in our educational context was slow. Teachers needed to not only be convinced of the merits of the change, but also have time to digest and implement the new information. Most teaching schedules did not allow time for teacher interaction or reflection, and thus change occurred in the classroom with the content teacher and myself working together. I tried to not get discouraged, but to focus on the inroads made with teachers and the seeds I hoped to plant for E S L students now and in the future. For example, both Teachers C and D were introduced to the Knowledge Framework and in particular my Literature Through the Knowledge Framework unit. They said that they had used several of the strategies provided in the unit such as prediction boxes, brainstorm webs, drawing images, graphing character traits, charts of scenes in a play, summarising thoughts in a graphic, creating own graphics, and flow chart summaries of acts in a Shakespeare play. 5.4.1 My agenda: The Knowledge Framework was the most successful teaching method for ESL support of content teachers and ESL students. I was so convinced that the Knowledge Framework (Mohan, 1986) approach to integrating language and content for E S L students was effective, that I had a clear agenda with regard to supporting teachers and E S L students. I sometimes felt like an evangelist preaching the virtues of the Framework to everyone I met because of the impact it had on my teaching. Students each year in my E S L classes commented, on their end-of-the-year course evaluation forms, that the Knowledge Framework had been very beneficial for their learning in my class and for other subjects. The Knowledge Framework was incorporated into most of what and how I taught all my students, E S L and English-speaking students. My students responded so well to the teaching of thinking skills along with graphics and language, that I felt compelled to share this teaching method with other teachers, especially since most teachers were also struggling with a high percentage of E S L students in their classrooms. My research study gave me further incentive to share the ILC" (Harper & Piatt, 103 1998) teaching methods with other teachers in my school. Having the research to validate this approach to teaching was helpful in my discussions with teachers and students. I tended, however, to focus more on the practical application rather than the theoretical side of the Framework while I worked with staff and students. The theoretical side provided the understandings to apply the Framework to most teaching contexts and gave me the confidence to discuss the merits of this approach to any teacher. In a respectful manner, I was able to adapt this teaching approach with individual teaching contexts and styles. According to the participants in the interview, Teacher A felt that using graphics was the most significant factor in the E S L students' success in her English courses. For example, she had used graphics to explain expectations for writing structure, character studies, and connections between dramatic personae. Teacher B was teaching English 11, 12 and Literature 12 that year. She felt that the Knowledge Framework was helpful in three ways. First, it made ideas that were abstract into more concrete concepts. Second, the language or discourse structures of the Framework lowered the language barrier in her classroom. Third, relationships between concepts were presented in a clear manner. For example, when teaching the Shakespearean play, Macbeth , to grade eleven English students, she made a plot outline and a flow chart by sequencing the events on the chalk board. Furthermore, when teaching Hamlet, she used a sociogram to teach the relationships between characters in the play, and a web to describe character traits and theme. The teachers were then asked in the interview what ideas or strategies from the ILC approach would they continue to use in their English classes. Both Teachers A and B commented emphatically that they could not teach their E S L students without integrating language and content using graphic organizers. Time was always a factor in teaching and the graphics decreased the time it took for students to comprehend the content; thus these teachers could not do without graphics in their 104 teaching. In other words, keeping the learning very visual was key to success with ESL students. Teacher C was also very skilled in using a variety of teaching methods to engage her students, including her E S L students in her English classes. For example, in one of her classes she taught Macbeth by using graphics as a prereading strategy to teach the structure and plot. With regard to the E S L students involved in the interview, the majority (84%) said they had used graphics in their English classes before, but it depended on their English teacher. Most of the E S L students participating in the interview process were from three English teachers who were open to progressive teaching strategies such as utilizing graphic organizers or collaborative learning. This did not negate the fact, however, that the students used in the interview process were from many different English classes in the school. Most students who identified with using graphics in their English classes also noted that the graphics were primarily used for brainstorming before writing assignments. One student was very specific and mentioned using webs, graphs, time lines, tables, flow charts, and outlines. Moreover, the majority of E S L students (84%) participating in the interview said that they had learned about the Knowledge Framework and writing genres before. One student mentioned learning about writing genres such as descriptive, narrative, and expository. This high percentage was mostly due to the fact that they were taught either by myself or one of my E S L colleagues who emphasized teaching the Knowledge Framework and the corresponding writing genres in the senior E S L level four classes. Therefore, it very much depended on who their E S L teacher was and whether their E S L teacher was trained in the Knowledge Framework and writing genres. Twenty-six percent of the E S L students said that they had used writing genres in their English class before, but it very much depended on which English teacher was teaching the course. 105 5.5 Challenges and Issues for Content Teachers, ESL Learners, and ESL Support Specialists The following findings arose unexpectedly from my observations and interview questions included in my research study (see Appendix B). These findings are related to challenges and issues for content teachers, E S L learners, and E S L support teachers. These discoveries will hopefully interest E S L support specialists, content teachers, administrators, school district officials, and members of the Ministry of Education in B.C. in order to affect change for E S L support programs. 5.5.1 Content Teachers This E S L support position increased my understandings of the great diversity of teaching styles in the school and how each individual teacher, although unique, did have similar issues as other teachers. The E S L student population growth in our school had certainly created a shared concern for these students by our faculty. 5.5.1.1 English-only Language Policy: The lack of English spoken by our student population is of great concern to many teachers. A minority of students speak English as their first language and teachers are tired of policing the language spoken in their classroom. Thus, the language issue is still debated in our school, with little hope for a solution. 5.5.1.2 ESL Student Passivity: ESL students appear to be too passive, which concerns many content teachers. Another concern for teachers was the E S L students' passivity in class. Were these students unmotivated or were they unable to do the work because of their poor language proficiency? Our E S L support team shared some cultural information about the E S L students with staff in order to explain their appearance of passivity. Many E S L students came from a culture where they were not expected to participate in class, except to listen to the teacher and complete assignments. These students had not learned how to form or express an opinion of their own in class discussions. There were also many fears of embarrassment if the E S L students spoke with a 106 foreign accent and were not understood. Also, the pace of speech in most classrooms was far too quick for E S L students to translate what had been said and formulate a response in English. Furthermore, a major challenge for Teachers C and D was the passivity of the ESL students in their English classes. According to Teacher C, at the beginning of the year she assumed that everyone would participate in her course, but she came to understand the E S L fear of speaking in English and 'saving face'. She was not irritated by the lack of participation, but was now working on building trust in order for the ESL students to take risks. She said that if she was fortunate to have the same E S L student in her English courses for two years, e.g., English 10, and English 11, she could see great improvement in participation in class discussions. She also wondered about the E S L students passivity in other courses, such as science, and whether or not the E S L students were encouraged to participate. 5.5.1.3 Assessment and Evaluation: Assessment and evaluation of ESL student work is extremely challenging for content teachers. Alternate assessment and evaluation strategies for ESL students is one solution. Social studies and English teachers were concerned with the evaluation of E S L student work. Teacher A found evaluation of her E S L students very difficult, especially designing or using criteria-based assessment tools like rubrics for writing. Furthermore, according to Teacher B, plagiarism had become a very significant problem in some Engish courses. Entire essays could be found and down-loaded from the internet. Students could have their tutors or friends edit their essays, or in other words, rewrite their essays so that they were at a university level. Therefore, more and more teachers were using only in-class writing for their evaluation of their E S L students. Take-home assignments were given less weight towards the students' overall grade in the course. Furthermore, on her own initiative, Teacher B met and discussed many E S L 107 related issues, especially assessment and evaluation, with an E S L teacher. This E S L teacher taught level four ESL. In other words, this E S L teacher taught the students who would end up in this English teacher's grade eleven English class. Their discussions were mainly around evaluation standards for these E S L students. They swapped many writing samples of their students, which was helpful in establishing criteria for evaluation. Also, they switched classes for a while so that she, the English teacher, could meet and see the levels of English for the E S L students in the ESL class and the E S L teacher could do the same in the English class. They were then better able to define their expectations for the E S L students in the E S L program and the mainstream English classes. This teacher interaction marks the success of the support team's efforts to promote E S L and content teacher collaboration in our school community . 5.5.1.4 Teaching ESL Students: Content teachers wonder about their ESL students' comprehension and exam preparation. Teacher A explained the challenges she faced when E S L students entered her English courses after completing their E S L programs. She found it difficult to teach literary devices such as allusion, idiom, and theme and new vocabulary to the E S L students. Teacher B's greatest concern with teaching E S L students in her English classes was the provincial exam preparation and whether or not the E S L students understood what they were doing. Teacher D's biggest concern with teaching E S L students in her English class was getting them to tell her when they did not understand. She did not want blank faces. She had used graphics to teach literature. For example, she had used character charts and flowcharts when she was teaching a novel. 5.5.1.5 English Teachers: English teachers face many challenges when ESL students enter their English courses. Teacher B was also asked what challenges she faced when E S L students entered her English courses after completing their E S L programs. She mentioned modifying 108 assignments to ensure the E S L students' learning and comprehension of assignments. She also assumed that they had more knowledge of the English language than they actually had. She had made far too many assumptions about their level and ability. Finally, her greatest challenge was how to bring these E S L students up to the level of English 11 or 12 so that they could graduate and pass the provincial exams. One of the challenges faced by Teachers C and D when E S L students entered their English courses after completing their E S L programs was that the E S L students had formed bonds with their E S L teachers and felt less safe and secure in their English course. Furthermore, E S L students would not come to see their English teacher for help. Also, the ESL class size of 20 as opposed to the English class size of 30, provided more individual attention. "When you have a class size of 30, the students are viewed as one mass, not individuals." Another challenge for English Teachers C and D was identifying the level of their E S L students in their English courses. "What is the measuring stick?" Some of these complaints were valid in past years, but were alleviated with our E S L support. We first provided class lists which identified all the levels of E S L students in the mainstream for the English, social studies, and science departments and for any other teacher who requested it. Furthermore, we put together a filing system and data base for all teachers to access which had current and past information on E S L students' language levels, tests, writing samples, past teachers' comments and suggestions, and academic report cards. 5.5.1.6 ESL Program: There are several important skills and content matter for ESL students to learn in the ESL program before entering the mainstream English courses. Another interview question asked what were the most important skills or content knowledge for E S L students to learn in the E S L program before entering the mainstream English classes. According to Teacher A , she said that it depended on the 109 course and the learning outcomes for each course. The new teacher mentioned that there needs to be a focus on literary devices, essay writing, sentences, grammar, and speaking. Both Teachers C and D felt that more emphasis on the oral skills of the English language should be emphasised in the E S L classes. Unfortunately, for many Chinese E S L students, their only chance to practice speaking in English was in their E S L classes because the majority of students at our school speak Cantonese or Mandarin as their first language. 5.5.1.7 English Educational Facilitators: English educational facilitators in the school district share common concerns. Furthermore, I participated in a district initiated teacher-interaction meeting of E S L and English educational facilitators. From this meeting I learned about the common concerns and realities for English teachers all over the district. Some of the English teachers said that they no longer were English teachers, but were rather ESL teachers. Some schools did not provide as many years of E S L support before entering the mainstream because if more E S L classes were available, English teachers would be out of a job. Teaching strategies, content, and standards were key issues along with assessment and evaluation. According to some of the teachers present, past assessment and evaluation tools seemed unsuitable for the E S L students in their classrooms. 5.5.2 ESL Level 5 Students 5.5.2.1 English Courses: There are many difficult tasks in mainstream English classes. By far the most difficult task for the E S L students who were interviewed (60%) was writing essays and paragraphs in their English classes. These students (42%) also mentioned reading and understanding Shakespeare as very difficult. Grammar (37%) was ranked the third most difficult task. Next, keeping up with the pace of reading in the class (26%), oral presentations (16%), interpreting poetry (16%), 110 spelling (10%), interpreting questions from novels (5%), participation in class and group discussions (5%), improving vocabulary (5%), writing process and skills (5%) and English idioms (5%) were all mentioned as the most challenging tasks. 5.5.2.2 English Courses: There are few easy tasks in English classes. When asked what these E S L students did well in their English classes, they mentioned several tasks. First, reading short stories (47%) was mentioned. Second, reading novels (42%) was said to be easy. Next, listening to class discussions (26%), speaking in English (16%), writing paragraphs (16%), completing homework assignments (10%), and writing essays (10%) were mentioned as easier tasks. Finally, grammar, journal writing, projects, participating in group activities, and listening (5%) were all said to be less difficult tasks for these E S L students. 5.5.2.3 Challenges Faced in ESL and English Courses: There are many similarities and differences. These E S L students had a variety of responses to the question of what challenges they faced in their mainstream English classroom, as opposed to the E S L classroom. 100% of the students mentioned they struggled with the English teachers' teaching practices. For example, the teacher was more strict, did not help them every step of the way, had higher expectations, and assumed students knew the information or had the background knowledge for the content. Also, their English teachers assumed students were at the same linguistic level as native English speakers, expected that grammar was no longer a problem for E S L students, spoke too quickly for E S L students to understand the teacher or complete assignments, and the teacher did not teach grammar rules which were expected to be known. Furthermore, 16% of the students mentioned the fact that there was more homework. Ten percent of the students discussed how the marking was harder than in E S L , grammar errors in writing were too many, and the competition was greater. Five percent mentioned the intense pressure to pass the course, the readings were too difficult, the writing style of the teacher was different from the students, there were more work and I l l presentations, the work in general was harder, and answering questions using your own words was very challenging. For 47% of these E S L students, the transition from the E S L program into the mainstream English course was not difficult, only initially. Fifteen percent mentioned it was a difficult transition for them. The students mentioned many differences between the E S L and English courses. In E S L , 16% of the students mentioned that the teachers explained the information more clearly, used simpler vocabulary, and used graphics more often. Ten percent mentioned that the E S L teachers helped you very closely. Furthermore, these students mentioned that the E S L teacher did not have assumptions about the E S L student's ability, put less pressure on the E S L students, spoke slower, emphasized pronunciation, grammar, oral speaking, provided much support, and were approachable. Also, the E S L course was different than the English course because E S L focussed more on the structure of reading and writing by explaining the Knowledge Framework and its related writing genres. There was also more group work, less writing assignments, one novel was covered, less homework, less reading of short stories, and less investigation of literary devices such as theme. E S L was easier than English and taught you the basic skills for English. On the other hand, some students felt that the E S L course was harder because students learned so many writing genres, essays, elements of literature and novels. In other words, the E S L course was so general; students learned 'everything'. Students in E S L also spoke more in class because it was less intimidating with fewer students. Lastly, students in E S L felt more comfortable with their progress and viewed learning the English language as attainable. These E S L students also commented on how the English class was different from their E S L classes. Twenty-one percent of the students mentioned that the English class was more verbal with more class discussions. Sixteen percent said there was less support from the English teacher, more homework, more emphasis on 112 critical thinking and ideas, and the work was harder because the standard was higher in a class with native English speakers. Ten percent discussed writing less, but with more analysis, more English was spoken, there were more quizzes, and the teacher expected that grammar was no longer a problem for the E S L students. The E S L students also mentioned that you worked independently, you needed to ask many questions in order to understand the class work, the writing was harder, and reading Shakespeare was a challenge. In addition, in the English class, the marking was stricter, you felt less comfortable because there were less E S L students, an inner pressure to succeed and increased pressures from parents to complete the English course quickly. With regard to the course, you wrote many essays, gave more presentations, focussed on grammatical errors in writing, dealt with more information, meaning and comprehension and read less novels. The competition was greater, you recognized your need to improve your English quickly, and the pace of assignments was faster. Group work was more interesting because you were with more English speakers. Also, the environment was different from E S L because you had more opportunities to speak with English speakers and improve your English. According to these ESL students, 26% felt that the ESL class and English class were very similar with regard to their curriculum. Furthermore, both courses taught essays, outlines, short stories, novels, elements of literature, graphics, and learning strategies. There was a similar amount of work. Both courses were very interactive. You read a lot of literature and wrote many paragraphs and essays. Both courses required students to participate in group work, class presentations and discussions. These students felt that the only difference was the fact that in their English class there were many English speakers and they needed to read and understand Shakespeare. 5.5.2.4 Most Beneficial Experiences in ESL for Transition into English Courses 113 When asked what experiences in E S L were the most beneficial for them or prepared them best for the mainstream English classes, these E S L students provided several answers. First, 63% felt that the Knowledge Framework was most helpful. This included the graphics, language structures, and the related writing genres. Next, 32% mentioned learning the elements of literature. Twenty-one percent felt that the grammar charts and graphics were most helpful. Ten percent thought the quantity of reading required was important preparation for English classes. Also, the students mentioned learning about the writing process, new vocabulary, writing techniques such as brainstorming, poetic devices, practising public speaking skills, and learning the various types of essays. 5.5.2.6 Most Beneficial Experiences in English Courses These E S L students also commented on the teaching or learning activities which helped them most in the English classroom. Twenty-six percent of the students mentioned the teacher elaborating and explaining things in detail, giving examples, clarifications and providing time for discussion. Ten percent mentioned the teacher answering questions in the novels, discussing the novel's theme, presenting poetry, using visuals for discussions, reading stories outloud with the class and providing clear instructions for essay assignments. Furthermore, the students discussed the teacher using group work, providing guidance on how to analyze a poem, enforcing the English language in the classroom, providing graphic organizers, and writing notes on the chalk board or overhead projector for a test or assignment. 5.6 Unique Role as Support Teacher and Researcher Tensions inevitably arose from the dual role as teacher and researcher. These tensions, however, were manageable because although I was the action researcher, I was not the central teacher in the classroom. I was researching my role as a support teacher, not as the primary teacher. There were, however, several conflicting aspects to my double-role as support teacher and researcher. 114 First, as a researcher I was to question my role and teaching practice and as a support teacher I was to have great confidence and belief in my services to teachers. Thus, my reflections or questions were written in my journal and expressed to my E S L support team, but rarely to the content teachers. Furthermore, as a researcher I needed to think before I acted, and as a support teacher I was required to act quickly, make rapid decisions, find solutions promptly, and rely on my intuitive side. Thus, I needed to take time at the end of each day to reflect on my role and practice as a support teacher. During the day, I was too busy to stop and reflect. Second, my research required that I focus on a few topics, study them in great detail and in theoretical terms. Whereas, my support role required I act on numerous things, often at the same time and often unconnected to each other. In addition, my research was about analysis or pulling things apart, whereas my support role required synthesising or putting things together. Third, my research involved raising questions, but my support role was about solving questions and resolving problems at a very pragmatic level. Again, I needed to have this dual mind-set while I was in my E S L support role. I was constantly journalling my thoughts throughout the day, but mostly after my work day was completed. Fourth, I needed to speak in the same language as teachers, instead of using the theoretical or academic jargon. At times, it was difficult to explain my research and goals to teachers. Communication was key to co-teaching experiences and so I did develop a comprehensible way of expressing my research concerns to teachers and E S L students. Fifth, finding time in my day to record data, write up my research, interview teachers and students, reflect on my practice and role as an E S L support teacher and then develop action plans, was very challenging. Working full-time as a secondary teacher and having to conduct research was too difficult initially, until I took a part-time position at my work. For three years I worked part-time at the secondary school 1 1 5 and was a part-time master's student at the University of British Columbia. Finding time to research and write the thesis paper was difficult, but attainable. Discipline was key to completing the thesis. Staying focussed amongst all the other aspects of one's work life was essential. Despite these conflicts in being both teacher and researcher, it was a worthwhile endeavour. Action research enabled me to achieve richer understandings of my role as a support teacher, improve my practice, and benefit my colleagues and their E S L students. 116 Chapter 6 D I S C U S S I O N Chapter six is a discussion on E S L support. First, I discuss the E S L support role and its effectiveness. Then, teacher collaboration, the application of the ILC approach, and challenges and issues faced by content teachers, E S L five students, and E S L support teachers are discussed. Next, chapter six makes suggestions on the unique role of support teacher and researcher. Lastly, improvements and recommendations for E S L support programs are outlined, along with the need for further research. 6.1 ESL Support Role Defined With regard to the definition of E S L support, there are as many definitions as there are E S L support teachers. How E S L support is defined in one school, as compared to another school, depends on the school community it is serving. Many parties are involved in defining the role (Sarason, 1996). Administrators, colleagues, ESL students, and E S L support teachers all take part in the creation of the E S L support role. Each party has unique contributions to the definition of the role. Dwyer (1998) points out that each party is needed and must be included in the formation of the ESL support program, or the program will not be as effective. To best serve the specific needs of a school community, we had to be flexible with regard to time-tabling, providing support services, and designing the E S L support program. Although flexibility is essential, we found that staying committed to our beliefs about our role was also important. For example, convincing others of the merits of co-teaching, and using alternate teaching and assessment strategies (Short, 1993), was a worthwhile cause. In order to provide effective support services, we had to be clear about our role and be able to articulate the support services (Griffin, 1994). Therefore, the E S L support role in a school should be clearly defined, but also open to change. The role will evolve and hopefully progress to better meet the needs of the 117 school. Despite the challenges of providing support services to teachers and E S L students, the rewards were many. We remained optimistic, despite the challenges or disappointments. With regard to tensions in perceptions of the E S L support role in my school, there were many tensions initially between E S L support teachers and colleagues, but they lessened. With time, more communication, and classroom interaction, teachers validated our support role and were far more receptive to our services (Teemant, Bernhardt, & Rodriguez-Munoz, 1996). As an E S L support team, we showed that action, rather than words, won the hearts and minds of colleagues in our school. When tensions in the definition of our E S L support role arose, we were confident in our job description and yet open to suggestions for change (Dwyer, 1998). 6.2 E S L Support Effectiveness In general, we felt quite effective in our role as E S L support teachers. Our E S L support program succeeded in several ways. We reached all the E S L level five students in our school and provided support services for their English, social studies, and science teachers. We provided several types of services to teachers and E S L students including in-class or pull-out support, individual, group, or whole-class instruction, seminars and workshops for teachers, and flexible time-tabling. We also educated the school staff on E S L student challenges in the mainstream and E S L programs, provided teaching and learning strategies for teachers, and brought entire departments together to discuss E S L issues (Harper & Piatt, 1998). On the whole, I felt we were successful in meeting many needs in our school in an authentic, holistic, and substantial way (Dwyer, 1998). There were certainly disappointments and challenges with both teachers and students, but we made good progress. 6.3 Teacher Collaboration Teacher collaboration was one of the greatest challenges in our E S L support role. There were, however, successful attempts at collaborative teaching between the 118 content and E S L support teachers: a finding which supports previous studies ( Clarke, Davis, & Rhodes, 1998; Tang, 1994; Teemant, Bernhardt, & Rodriguez-Munoz, 1996). Once a trust and respect were developed between both teachers, then the co-teaching was a possibility. This took time, however, and required that the E S L support teacher worked with one teacher for a significant amount of time. For example, we worked with each teacher in the three departments for two to three weeks each. Furthermore, if we worked with a teacher in the past year, we would continue the relationship the following year and co-teaching developed faster. The planning for the co-teaching usually occurred while working together in the class. Very few teachers were available to meet outside the class hours. A hectic schedule was very common for most teachers and E S L support could be viewed as one more task to complete. Thus, we tried to speak as much as possible to teachers while we were in their classroom. Furthermore, bringing departments together to discuss E S L issues was one of our successes. For the longest time, gaps between departments existed in our school. The E S L support team, however, made good progress in closing these perceived gaps for many teachers. We provided free lunches, with the support of our administration, and facilitated discussions around common E S L issues. The English and E S L departments, which definitely needed each other's help and support, were brought together several times. We needed to break down some barriers and myths that had developed between the two departments. We also needed to inform each other of our job descriptions, course content, teaching strategies and issues concerning teaching E S L students. We also brought together the resource and E S L departments several times to discuss the E S L / L D (learning difficulties) students that were on both our case loads. I also collaborated with the social studies department. I provided workshops and seminars on E S L teaching and assessment strategies as suggested in the literature (Garmston, 1987; Galbraith & Anstrom, 1995; Short, 1993). There seemed to be a new openness to discussing E S L issues in our school. Our school 119 staff was informed and knew where to turn when they were in need. 6.4 Application of the Integrated Language and Content Approach After spending one year developing an integrated language and content unit for literature-based courses as advocated by a number of researchers (Probst, 1984; Purves & Monson, 1984; Collie & Slater, 1987; Norton, 1992; Costodio & Surron, 1998), I was very intent on sharing my unit with as many English teachers as possible (Galbraith & Anstrom, 1995). It was a lot of work designing the unit, but I had help from one of my E S L colleagues in the creation of the unit. I entitled it Literature Through the Knowledge Framework (see Appendix F). Thus, I needed to instruct teachers in the basics of the the Knowledge Framework (Mohan, 1986) first, before the unit would make sense to them. Therefore, I was able to not only provide a literature unit, but also effective E S L teaching strategies based on the Knowledge Framework, for many teachers. With regard to the application of the unit, most teachers who learned about the unit from me felt they would use the unit where it applied to their specific course. I developed the unit so that it was adaptable to any literature and any grade for any English course. It was a teaching strategy guide. Most teachers were very grateful for this unit, and received it as a gift for their participation in my research study. One teacher commented to me that it was a "gold mine". My E S L support role, therefore, did include sharing this unit with as many teachers that I worked with. I was happy to share this knowledge. 6.5 Challenges and Issues Faced by Content Teachers There were many challenges and issues that content teachers faced while teaching E S L students. These challenges still existed, but teachers knew they were not alone and there was a team in the school that was able to support them and their E S L students. Teachers had a place to air their concerns and receive support. The support they received was not only talk, but action. We provided a level of service that was professional, efficient, flexible, and effective. We could not help one 120 teacher for the entire year, but we could still make a difference for the time we were working together. Furthermore, teachers could seek support throughout the year for individual students they were concerned about. Moreover, the challenges and issues teachers faced were not insurmountable. Teachers, however, needed more support than we could provide. We had begun a work in our school and would continue to address as many needs as possible. We were not miracle workers. We were teachers who came alongside content teachers and tried to make their journey less difficult to travel. 6.6 Challenges and Issues Faced by ESL Level 5 Students Challenges for E S L students in content courses were also many. Most E S L students who were interviewed seemed to view their teachers as the source of most of their struggles. Their teachers' expectations, teaching style, teaching strategies, course work, and assessment strategies (Short, 1993) were mentioned as unsupportive of the E S L students' learning. Some students, however, did compliment some of their teachers and took some responsibility for their own difficulties in the mainstream courses. It was a tough road for these ESL students in secondary school. Older students who immigrated to Canada with low language proficiency were in the worst position. These students tended to be the neediest and require the most support. When working with their content teachers, we were able to provide support strategies, and also a realistic picture of these students for their teachers. Many teachers did not have an understanding of the limited reading, writing, and speaking skills of many of these students. In other words, we were able to provide practical and realistic counsel for teachers and their E S L students because of our experience working with E S L students. 6.7 Challenges and Issues Faced by ESL Support Teachers E S L support teachers also had concerns which existed for a variety of reasons. Most of the challenges faced by E S L support teachers were similar across the district and there were many ways to address them. Most of the difficulties existed due to the 121 realities of the job situation. As E S L support teachers we had to work with teachers who were not used to sharing their classrooms and students with other teachers. There were many E S L students in content classes that were really struggling, time-tabling was never easy, and assessment of E S L students was difficult due to the limited amount of time spent with each student. Despite these difficulties, we had to find ways to provide effective support to teachers and E S L students. To ensure success, we had to have a clear understanding of one's role as an E S L support teacher, along with a flexible, realistic, and optimistic approach to support. 6.8 Unique Role as a Support Teacher and Researcher Being both a support teacher and action researcher was a wonderful experience, despite the conflicting roles (Atkinson, 1994). Making time to investigate my practice along with other teachers' practices and E S L student experiences enriched my professional life. The challenges I faced in the dual role of teacher/researcher were overcome with diligence, perseverance, and discipline. My practice will never be the same after this research project. My findings will hopefully benefit other E S L support teachers, content teachers, and E S L students in mainstream courses. 6.9 Improvements for ESL Support One benefit of my research study was the improvements made to the E S L support program in our school. The second year of the support program made improvements based on my observations. After speaking with my E S L support team, colleagues, E S L students, administrators, and school district consultants, the E S L support program at our school improved its services. First, we continued the identification of E S L students on class rosters for teachers. Teachers appreciate this information and want it to continue. Second, we spoke at our first staff meeting and subsequent department meetings about our program and services offered. Third, we developed a teachers' guide to E S L level five support services (see Appendix E). This information guide included our E S L support 122 objectives, overview of the ESL program at our school, definition of ESL support for level five ESL students, an annual instructional plan for each ESL student, classroom teaching strategies, ESL level five assessment rubrics, report card comments for ESL students, and how to access ESL support. Fourth, the ESL support team created a filing system for all the ESL students in the school. Each file included students' ESL support, ESL level, reading and writing assessments, report cards, and an annual instructional plan. Fifth, as an ESL support team we met with every ESL level five student by working solely with the English department from September until December. We felt that this enabled us to meet with every ESL level 5 student in our school, introduce ourselves, and work with many English teachers. We divided our services among the three departments, English, social studies, and science for the months of January until June. We created schedules for each teacher in each department informing them of our visitations to their classrooms. We visited particular classes, knew the ESL students who we would work with, and provided support services to the ESL students and their teachers. For the second year of ESL support, we did not wait to be invited to a classroom. We had attained credibility from the prior year's work and were able to schedule our services accordingly. After working with each ESL student, our assessments were put into the student's file for future reference. All teachers had access to our filing system at any time. We kept the files in a central location in the school - the resource department meeting room. Along with scheduled services, we still received memos from teachers about individual students who teachers were particularly concerned about. We met with these students usually at lunch time, but sometimes in the afternoons or after school. We continued to provide flexible services such as direct instruction to an individual learner or groups of learners (pull-out, drop-in before, after, or during school, or in-class support), planning or consulting collaboratively on a regular and ongoing basis to support the educational program of the students, or classroom assistant 123 support specifically allocated to stated goals for the student. Lastly, in order to reach all the ESL level five students in the school, our ESL support team had to be flexible with our timetables. Flexibility is key to this position of ESL support. 6.10 Recommendations for E S L Support Programs As a result of this action research project, I would like to reiterate recommendations for ESL support programs in various teaching contexts. First, for effective full inclusion or integration of ESL students in mainstream courses, it requires ongoing language support services by ESL support specialists or content teachers with ESL training (Harper & Piatt, 1998). Ongoing support from ESL trained teachers will help prevent inclusion models from merely providing superficial access to standard curriculum, contact with native speakers, and opportunities to interact socially and develop academic language skills in content areas (Harper & Piatt, 1998). Furthermore, strategic use of ESL specialists to support students and teachers in adapting curriculum and planning instruction is a critical component of effective ESL support inclusion models (Harper & Piatt, 1998). Second, an effective ESL support program allows time to require a change in teacher behaviour and attitude towards ESL learners (Dwyer, 1998). In other words, positive teacher attitudes are critical to the success of ESL support programs (Harper & Piatt, 1998). Third, a successful ESL support program requires a variety of instructional program options to effectively serve the ESL learners and meet the school's changing needs (Harper & Piatt, 1998). Models for second language support should reflect the needs of a school community. There are many effective programs to choose from. Fourth, successful collaboration between ESL and mainstream teachers, across subject areas, is critical to the success of ESL support programs (Joyce & Showers, 1982; Kwiat, 1989; Galbraith & Anstrom, 1995). For collaboration to be effective, the ESL support specialist needs to be clear about his or her role (Harper & Piatt, 1988), define responsibilities, develop realistic expectations, and share information about 124 successes and failures (Davidson, 1992). Furthermore, the role of the ESL support teacher is a language development specialist, not merely an assistant to the content teacher. Fifth, for effective collaboration, peer-coaching is an effective method to improve the implementation of new teaching techniques (Calderon & Spiegel-Coleman, 1984). Sixth, the Knowledge Framework (Mohan, 1986) is an effective tool for promoting collaboration between ESL and content teachers (Tang, 1994). In addition, success of the collaborative model depends on the voluntary participation of teachers, an atmosphere of trust and mutual respect, and familiarity with the Knowledge Framework (Tang, 1994). Seventh, success in innovative collaborative teaching requires experienced teachers, sufficient implementation time, and administrative support (Nunan, 1992). Eighth, for collaboration to be useful, it requires that ESL support teachers address the realities of each teaching context, be relevant and be pragmatic. Ninth, ESL support specialists should be diplomatic, but diligent in promoting the Integrated Language and Content Approach (ILC) to mainstream teachers. The ILC approach helps avoid segregating or clustering ESL students in the lowest levels of instruction and reduces ESL student drop-out rates from secondary school (Dwyer, 1998). Tenth, there needs to be a systematic effort to improve the skills of mainstream teachers supporting ESL learners (Dwyer, 1998). The achievement of second language learners improves with the professional development of content teachers (Dwyer, 1998). There needs to be a shared responsibility for the ESL students between ESL and content teachers (Dwyer, 1998). A staff development model should be "context sensitive, knowledge-based, purposeful, well-articulated, ongoing, continuous, and reflective (Griffin, 1994, p. 29). Dwyer's (1998) model of professional development for content teachers includes voluntary participation, collaboration, and workshops using the technical coaching model (Garmston, 1987). Lastly, ESL support programs need to build a broad base of support and advocacy, and target the 125 areas of strong need in order to receive support from the school community. 6.11 For Further Research With regard to further research of ESL support services, more research is needed in the following areas: 1. defining ESL support roles; 2. developing ESL support programs; 3. analyzing role perceptions; 4. evaluating the effectiveness of support programs; 5. applying the Integrated Language and Content Approach in a secondary school context; 6. challenges and issues faced by content teachers, ESL students and support teachers; and 7. the unique dual role of being both a teacher and researcher. Each school context is unique and this research study explores only one context. Although each situation is unique with its own needs and characteristics, it is beneficial to adapt the conclusions from this study to other contexts. There are common challenges and issues faced by ESL support teachers, content teachers, and ESL students in many secondary schools. Defining and evaluating one's role in a school also has commonalities across various contexts. In addition, teacher collaboration, application of the Integrated Language and Content Approach, and the unique role of being both teacher and researcher have conclusions which could apply to other teaching contexts and thus benefit other school communities. 126 REFERENCES Anderson, R .C. (1985). Role of the reader's schema in comprehension, learning, and memory. In H . Singer and R. Ruddell (Eds.), Theoretical model and processes of reading (3rd ed.). Newark, D E : International Reading Association. Anderson, C . L . , Herr, K. , & Nihlen, A.S. (1994). Studying your own school. Thousand Oaks, C A : Corwin Press. Atkinson, Sue (1994). Rethinking the principles and practice of action research: The tensions for the teacher-researcher. 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Watt, D., & Roessingh, H., (1994). ESL dropout: The myth of educational equity. Alberta Journal of Educational Resear8ch, 40, 283-296. Widdowson, H.G.(1978). Teaching language as communication. Oxford: Oxford University Press. Winter, Richard (1996). Some principles and procedures for the conduct of action research. In Ortrun Zuber-Skerritt (Ed.) New Directions in Action Research (pp. 3-9) London: The Falmer Press. Zuber-Skerritt, Ortrun (1996). Introduction: New directions in action research. In Ortrun Zuber-Skerritt (Ed.) New Directions in Action Research (pp. 3-9) London: The Falmer Press. Zuber-Skerritt, Ortrun (1996). Emancipatory action research for organisational change. In Ortrun Zuber-Skerritt (Ed.) New Directions in Action Research (pp. 3-9) London: The Falmer Press. T H E U N I V E R S I T Y O F B R I T I S H C O L U M B I A 135 Department of Language Education 2125 Main Mall Vancouver, B.C. Canada V6T 1Z4 Tel: (604) 822-5788 Fax: (604) 822-3154 A semi-structured interview will be based on the following sample questions for the questionnaire. Questionnaire: Teachers This questionnaire concerns our research. Please take a few minutes to respond freely to these questions. We appreciate your cooperation. 1. Name of participant: 2. Male Female 3. Age: 4. Home country: 5. First language: Other languages spoken: 6. How long have you lived in Canada? 7. What is you biggest concern with teaching ESL students in your English class? 8. Have you had to change or adapt your teaching methods/style/ or content due to the increase of ESL students in the mainstream? 9. Have you learned about the Integrated Language and Content approach? 10. Have you learned about the Knowledge Framework (Mohan, 1986)? 11. Have you used graphics with your students? 12. Have you used graphics to teach literature? E-mail: lang.educ@ubc.ca Web Site: http://www.lane.educ.ubc.ca Courier Address: 2034 Lr. Mall Road, Room 100 UBC, Vancouver, B.C., V6T 1Z2 T H E U N I V E R S I T Y O F B R I T I S H C O L U M B I A 136 Department of Language Education 2125 Main Mall Vancouver, B.C. Canada V6T IZ4 Tel: (604) 822-5788 Fax:(604) 822-3154 A semi-structured interview will be based on the following sample questions for the questionnaire. Questionnaire: Students This questionnaire concerns our research. We would appreciate it if you would take a few minutes to respond freely to the questions. Thank you for your cooperation. 1. Name of participant: 2. Male or Female 3. Age: 4. Home country: 5. First language: Other languages spoken: 6. Time in Canada: 7. Years of ESL instruction: 8. English course: English 8, 9,10,11, or 12 9. How many years have you been out of the ESL program? 10. Have you used graphics in your English class before? Explain. 11. Have you learned about the Knowledge Framework before? (knowledge structures, thinking skills, graphics, helpful language) 12. What are the most difficult tasks for you in this English class? E-mail: lang.'cduc@ubc.ca ' Courier Address: 2034 Lr. Mall Road. Room 100 Web Silo: hup://ww\v.lanc.cduc.ubc.ca U B C . Vancouver. B.C. . V6T 1Z2 137 Appendix B INTERVIEW: TEACHERS AND ESL STUDENTS Tel: (604) 822-5788 Fax: (604) 822-3154 Department of Language Education 2125 Main Mall Vancouver, B.C. Canada V6T 1Z4 INTERVIEW: TEACHERS 1. In what ways did the ILC unit, "Literature Through the Knowledge Framework", support yourself and your ESL students? 2. Has a gap been bridged between the English and ESL departments in some way through this action research project? 3. What challenges do you face when ESL students enter your English courses after completing their ESL programs? 4. What are the most important skills or content knowledge for ESL students to know before entering the mainstream English classroom? 5. What are the most common ways of teaching literature and composition currently in mainstream English classrooms? 6. What ideas or strategies from ILC approach would you continue to use in your English course? 7. What are the five most important things you learned from your participation in this action research project? 8. How confident do you feel about using the ILC approach with your students in the future? 9. What was most challenging for you as a participant in the action research cycle? 10. What was most rewarding for you as a participant in the action research cycle? 11. What are the benefits to you from participating in the action research cycle? 12. How would you improve the action research cycle or process? E-mail: lang.educ@ubc.ca Web Site: http://www.lane.educ.ubc.ca Courier Address: 2034 Lr. Mall Road, Room 100 UBC, Vancouver, B.C., V6T 1Z2 T H E U N I V E R S I T Y O F B R I T I S H C O L U M B I A 138 Tel : (604) 822-5788 Fax: (604) 822-3154 Department of Language Education 2125 M a i n M a l l Vancouver. B . C . Canada V 6 T 1Z4 INTERVIEWS: STUDENTS 1. In what ways has the ILC unit, "Literature Through the Knowledge Framework", supported you in your mainstream English class? (Activities, Knowledge Structures, Thinking Skills, Graphics, Writing Genres) 2. What challenges do you face in the mainstream English classroom? 3. Was it a difficult transition from the ESL program into the mainstream English course? Explain. 4. How are ESL classes and English classes different? similar? 5. What experiences in ESL were the most beneficial for you? In other words, what experiences in ESL prepared you the most for mainstream English? 6. What teaching or learning activities help you most in the English classroom? 7. What do think about your ability in this class? Excellent Very Good Good Satisfactory Below average Poor 8. What did you learn through working on this ILC unit? 9. What was most helpful from the ILC unit? 10. What was the most difficult to understand from the. ILC unit? 11. Had you learned from an ILC unit in the past? If yes, what did you learn? How was it similar or different from what you learned in this class? 12. How do you think you can improve your performance in this class? E-mai l : lung.edue@ubc.ca Courier Address: 2034 Lr . M a l l R o a d . Room 100 Web Site: hup:/Av\vv, .kine.cduc.ubc.ca U B C . Vancouver. B . C . . V 6 T 1Z2 Appendix C RICHMOND SCHOOL DISTRICT #38 GRADES/PERCENTAGES 86% A 73% B 67% C+ 60% C 50% C -0-49% I Appendix D GRAPH OF ESL STUDENT ! PARTICIPANTS ro cn i\> O J no ro ro ro o co co - s i cn cn CO ro O co CO cn cn CO ro Academic ability in home country Canadian schools are more difficult than schools in homecountries friends, participate in Can. activities Fit into Canadian society, have Can. j English spoken in-class and outside-class 1 Desires to learn English Enjoys living in Canada English-speaking friends Help from friends Other academic subjects English homework Tutors Goal for learning English is post-secondary education/ career Level in English course English course Living with entire family in Canada Years of ESL instruction Years in Canada First language Home country Ethnicity > CD Male/Female Questionnaire: Part i ci Dants/Students: average student yes o English 20% outside class resentful does not like it doing well 4-5 hours/night yes ••< CD (fl below average: c-English 12 yes three four Cantonese Hong Kong Chinese seventeen —h > yes, because of ESL desires to fit in 20% in-class, 100% outside class key to success in this world yes not many < CD doing well 3 hours/week Z3 o yes below average rn t9_ 35° zr ro yes jone I Cantonese, Mandarin 1 Hong Kong 1 Chinese ! seventeen —h r\> oi no P O C O ro ro ro ro o C O CO cn cn C O ro o C O co " s j cn cn C O 3 o_ cn < "< 3 *< C Q C O 3 •< rn •< rt rt o X O (A rt. o O CD CD CD o CD o O CD < 3 CD 3 " o <u CD W )% in-cla (A CA rt CA o zr CA CD CA o o -- 3 3 < schools ires to )% in-cla many zr CO rj —1» d grade ours/we rage lish 12 iese g Kong tonese, enteen schools —h CA (A ours/we o> ' rt" (ft o CD Ma 3 7 T Ma 5' . 3 cr O teach C L o rt zr o s P © s teach arin Q - o CD —l —t". c CA —h rt o" CA c a l rt e class 3 < cn < >< 3 C L rt < •< cr m 3 —h —h o X o <A 3 o o, schc CD 0% in-CD CD o o CD CD CD 3 o, pare ve <" zr o at CD o, schc s, no 0% in-CA CA M Bm o zr o CA CA low a glish o, pare ve e and inese ng Ko ntone vente o 0) n cp_ - i < —* 3 0) 3 (A CD 3 :lass, 1 CA CD ro rt C Q CD 3 s are Q . 3 o :lass, 1 /nigh rage, s wor zr 21 —h cr o r-t- o 1 o rt O S 3 CO Z5~ Q _ no 5' —h tsi X tsi o O ' C L 3 C _ CD C Q rt class ! Kong 3 < < < <^ C O < < 03 m 3 o — H —1 CD —"h m o CD <—> CD CD CD CD CD < 3 O <" zr 01 to' , both CA 10% in CA (A CA hours/ CA CA erage, glish 1 c - 1 CD inese iwan indarir ihteen 0) i o o ro —I CD las ee D _ —h rt» cn cult 0% outside class 1 3 < < < 3 < —*% C O 3 <^ 0) m < rtt rt. X m co CD T I O CD o CD CD o CD 3 ' o O CD cr 3 CD o <" ispani • D m CA o s P O S CA CA 3 at CA a> cn i min CA ove glish (A c CD ispani Salv anish ihtee co —• 3 O c o> o 0> anish 3 0) 3 rt < Q _ Iva at CD CA era O —\ C L CA o I Q o —i — i CD was 001 hou cr was s " O S ~ \ 3 3 ore o cz r-t-ca" 3 " ore (A rt Q . a l —h CD — * cV O tz_ at rt CA 142 ro cn ro CO ro ro ro ro o to OO 4^ cn cn co ro _ o co OO CD cn CO ro <^ CD CA 70-90% outside-class •< CD CA CD CA yes ZJ O B's | varied o •< CD CA average, B English 11 *< CD CA one one year and nine months Filipino Phillipines Tagalog, Spanish sixteen CD below average Communications 11 Chinese Taiwan Mandarin I sixteen 3 X above average English 11 Chinese Taiwan Mandarin sixteen 3 no, Hong Kong was more difficult no, but wants part, in Can. activity 50% in-class^ 70% outside class yes < CD CA yes, ESL friends Cs and B's 1 - 2 hours/night yes < CD CA average/passing Communications 11 no, lives with mother and sister five seven Chinese Hong Kong Cantonese seventeen 3 < 143 ro cn ro ro CO ro ro ro ro o CD oo C I cn co ro -. o CD 03 -s i cn CO ro yes yes .yes ... j yes, English friends 1 30 minutes/night I 3 o .yes ;. I CO English 12 j four I nine ! Chinese j Hong Kong, Montreal j Cantonese, French ] sixteen 3 yes,but not want to par. in Can. ad 50% in-class, 50% outside class I yes 1 yes ] yes | <^ CD OJ m 3 [Q_ oj" zr Ul 73 CD Ol *r CD —I Ul 1 - 2 hours/night j yes .yes average Communications 11 j 8 five j five i Chinese j Hong Kong j i Cantonese ] eighteen j —*i r~ yes, because of ESL yes 40% in-class, 40% outside class | yes ! not many yes, English friends fine, B's and Cs j 2-3 hours/night < CD Ul improve communication with Can. average, passing I English 12 | yes three four Chinese Taiwan Mandarin seventeen —n yes yes 100% all the time yes yes yes CD UJ 2-3 hours/week yes, become a German teacher average English 11 lives with mother only five five Iranian Iran, Germany Persian, German nineteen —h Z I 144 ii PO PO PO PO PO PO CO 03 cn CO PO o CO 00 cn CO ro - * o - s i cn cn CO PO < CD 01 o o < CD CO < CD U l man < CD cn 75% average ro t no American univ. on at above average, 83% m 3 to refu —1> o sz six Afri Moz Swa CD zr 3 O % all the time very grateful < parents 75% average 3 hours/week American univ. on at above average, 83% ish 12 gee status,adopted can ambique, Africa hili, Arabic, Port teen hie gee status,adopted sz to <-+ cz o < CD CO o se o 01 zr 3 o —ti so 01 in q < CX) < cn oo < s< so m 3 r-t —* o H cn TJ CD o CD CD O CD o CD CD ci- 3 o s o zr 01 landari s, beca i% in-CO cn 3 CD UJ m co l% av hour/i CO CO ove a glish , only o sz inese iwan landari :teen s, beca o i CD 3 < —* , only ZS sz to —H QJ CD —* —-cn CD CO U) riends [Q CD zr r+ l 01 £} /es O —h -fc. riends CD m O riends OO r+* co 3" r~ i outside class Np OS mother ! "< <^ oo u •< 3 "< > CO 3 * < SO m < o r+ -n H 3 —h •o CD CD cn CD CD o CD O O CD < 3 CD 3 — zr 01 —* s, bee cn % in-cn cn s, ESL B, an i minu U) erage glish ' s, mo e and o and ipino TD ZS galog letten SO o C L t~r r f 01 01 CD CD CO —* 3" CO ise ass riei Cs UJ i CD hal 3" 01 o —1% m ass ids 3" and CD —ti •< CD 01 co so o U l 01 r— nd family ur/night 1 ister CO - * CO H CO *< 3 > *< •< 01 m c< r+ r-t- o H cn 3 01 CD cn CD CD o CD and 1, CD CD cr 3 CD zr zr 01 tandari iwan ' s, but % in-s, in ( CO t man CO s, B's and 1, 00 CO ove a glishl CO o CD CD 01 3 inese iwan tandari iteen o u <^ ro ZT < « O 3 oi U l ma las: rde era 01 3 3 GO O CQ zr r-t- sz a> so o SO ro o rs/ —t\ CD z> cn SUI rs/ oo O o SUI 3 oo O zr O to.' 3 ZS c < ZT "O CD r-t- CD r+ eti cn cn eti CD C L 5 t-f culture CD ive culture class Can. IS) OI PO PO CO PO PO PO i PO o CD CO cn cn CO PO _. o CO CO -si CD cn CO PO yes 90% in-class, 30% outside class | yes 1 many j yes ... .. .... . _J C+, B's 1 hour/night ] o yes above average, C+ English 11 yes five six Chinese Hong Kong Cantonese ] seventeen 3 CO Appendix E TEACHERS' GUIDE TO ESL L E V E L 5 SUPPORT SERVICES TafiTp nf Contents RHS ESL Support Objectives 3 Overview of ESL Program- Levels 1 to 4 4 ESL Program Level 5 - Support Defined 5 Annual Instructional Plan - Level 5 6 Classroom Strategies 7 ESL Level 5 Assessment 8 Report Card Comments 9 How to Access Support 10 2 IV •  147 Level 5 Support Ohjprfivpc has received Ministry funds to support level five ESL students. The delivery of this support is based on our philosophy for ESL learners: Principles of Instruction O ESL learners require active participation, opportunities to learn through individual and group processes, and opportunities to learn in a variety of ways and at different rates . • ESL support program endorses continuous learning of academic concepts and language • ESL teachers use-a team approach to support students and work with classroom teachers, resource teachers and counsellors Objectives <s> to develop English language skills so that social, personal and academic goals can be achieved ®> to teach language development strategies «s> to track progress to provide individualized support for students in their regular course work 3 148 O v e r v i e w o f E S T , P r o g r a m - T . P V P I S I f o zt E S L l Math P.E. gr 8-10 / Elective 11-12 Elective Elective BLOCKS ESL 2 ESL 2 ESL 2 Science Math P.E. gr8-10/ Elective 11/12 Elective Elective BLOCKS: ESL 4 P.E. gr 8-10 / Elective gr 12 Social Studies / Elective gr 12 Science/Elective gr 12 Math/Electivegrl2 French gr 8 / Elective 9-12 Elective Elective 149 ESL Level 5 - Support Program - September to Tune September to December: Our mandate is to support all level 5 students in the school. We three ESL support teachers have organized our timetables to spend two consecutive weeks with every English class. Please keep in mind that we are required by the Ministry to serve all ESL 5 students. We are offering the following choices: 1) Two week pull-out intensive writing program. (Grades can be assigned at the end of the week). • . •• o r 2) Two week short-term pull-out to teach a specific assignment or skill as determined by the teacher. or 3) Two weeks of in-class support (individual or small group assistance with a specific assignment or skill). January to June: From January to June, ESL level 5 students in Social Studies, Science and English classes will be supported in the following ways: 1) Michelle Konnert will provide support for ESL level 5 students in Social Studies and English classes 2) will provide support for ESL level 5 students in Science classes 3) will provide support for ESL level 5 students in English classes Services provided can include: • direct instruction to an individual learner or group of learners • pull out O in-class • planning/consulting collaboratively on a regular and ongoing basis to support the educational program of the students The 'How To Access Support' Form is on page 10 of this booklet. 5 m 150 Annual Instructional Plan (AIP) for ESL Level 5 students in the classroom !>ubjecy/ Classroom Teacher: sSL Support Teacher Learning Outcomes for language instruction in the classroom: increase ability to understand & use English colloquial and idiomatic expressions-increase independence when reading complex text increase development of the use of appropriate structures, vocabulary and overall organization of written language develop higher order thinking skills enable student to achieve the expected learning outcomes of the curriculum in provincial Strategies: O content area writing strategies O content area reading strategies • vocabulary instruction • grammar instruction • listening and speaking instruction • O Date: Types of Servirp: • direct instruction to an individual learner or group'-of learners • pullout • drop in (before, after or during school) • in-class • planning/consulting collaboratively on a regular and ongoing basis to support the educational program of the students • classroom assistant support specifically allocated to stated goals for the student Schedule of Support: Ongoing in class support provided in class during block 151 Classroom Strategi es These examples of good teaching practice are recommended to assist ESL students in the classroom: from Guide for ESL Specialists p38 and ESL Learners: A Guide for Classroom Teachers pl8&19 The Teachers Use of Language ®> provide additional "wait time" for student responses to questions be conscious of the vocabulary you use ©> teach the language of the subject ®> simplify sentence structures and repeat sentences verbatim before trying to rephrase ©\ rephrase idioms or reteach their meaning @> clearly mark transitions during classroom activities e> periodically check to see if the ESL student is understanding Contextual Supports for Linguistic Development write key words on the board and use visual and other nonverbal cues to present key ideas «s> provide written notes, summaries, instructions and prereading instructions • e> respond to language errors use directed reading activities «e> U Se audio taped texts to combine aural and visual cues e> establish a supportive environment for language learning «s> use cooperative learning strategies ®> encourage student to rehearse information or instructions orally use peer tutoring «s> establish a homework club ®> use key visuals/graphic organizers to present content 7 ESL Level 5 - Assessment 152 Annual Assessment: The Ministry requires language level assessment of all ESL students iri the school. In collaboration with the English or Social Studies teacher, the ESL support teacher will help fill out the Green Card. The assessment includes: The completion of the Green Card by an English or Social Studies teacher in collaboration with the ESL level 5 support team and a Writing Assessment scored using the School District No. 38 (Richmond) Secondary Written Language Observation Matrix and/or A Reading or Speaking/ Listening Assessment 8 Suggested report card comments f o r level 5 students • Additional language support has been provided to enable student to achieve the expected learning outcomes of the provincial curriculum. • Additional language support has been provided to help student apply reading comprehension strategies in academic subject materials. • Additional language support has been provided to teach writing skills and use graphic organizers. • Additional language support has been provided to help student edit and proofread for correct grammar, including complex verb forms in their writing. • Additional language support has been provided to increase student's ability to understand and use complex sentence structures and abstract vocabulary. • Additional language support has been provided to help student apply learning strategies in academic subjects. • Additional language support has been provided to help student understand and use metaphoric, idiomatic and colloquial language (figures of speech, words with multiple meanings). 9 154 30W JO Access S l i p p p n r f 1. Refer to class list to see which students qualify for ESL Level 5 Support 2. Fill out the Request for Level 5 Student Support Form (below) 3. Place in ESL support teacher's mailbox: - Science - English Konnert - Social Studies/ EN 4. Release time is available for planning and implementation Request for Level B Sfndent Snppm* Teacher: Student (s): Course: Grade: Support Teacher: EN Konnert SS/EN SC How can I help you? Request: (check where appropriate) • direct mstruction to an individual learner or group of learners by the ESL support pull out O in-class team • planning/consulting collaboratively with ESL support team on a regular and ongoing basis to support the educational program of the students Follow Up: 10 155 Appendix LITERATURE THROUGH T H E KNOWLEDGE FRAMEWORK UNIT - w 0 _ to tJ _ fe E g I ^ E | •"2 ! § > c Q CO. c w -= ^ „ _ 156 157 •3 g > 2 CL. 60 .S O o £ _ o •c 2 2 — o £ O 3 O >> a. o 158 S -a a •8 x -S O . E a a. E c o. £ X (0 a u S I I u _ _ o °>-i S i I S o QL 3 CD 0) a » o a o c c c c o o o o I a. n m S a « P. a uj 5 > a c a _ E 3 Q O < JI 23 2 E 3 O l < a. o-j» .2 c Q. J O $ >•£ E % •S 2 • 8* p « E * i f " II J J £ S *-£ ? S l f -_ <D o " •= r ™ a. <o : - « -5 5 SfUU 11 II o y 1 5 i l» * £ O JD <? .g * p = 1 J <J> <D ^ E s O P w i l l I i i j *r 1 .2 i " o> 5 = ° "I a i l 4 1 •g .a TI V 3 S « S a •» & a 13 o £ £• » m *> t 1 s 8 c f S a o ° • ^ -i 8 s H I 55 o £ 159 S J I ,Q St © t> — "S-E E 4 Co I Ion ' for more <*> « trt 1 issay: see "Principl' judgment, or ranking issay: see "Principl' judgment, or ranking 4 — cf • .S 1 'Argument gem argue the evaluat 1 160 2 O 8 a .0 o c o a 5 a n C o •— CB 3 a > UJ • v a. •a •a < 3 co 1 

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