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ContentStrategiesbyDomain

Inordertobeproficientinalanguage,studentsneedtodevelop
proficiencyinfourdomains:listening,speaking,readingandwriting.
Intentionalpracticeeachdayincontentareaclasseswillhelpstudents
Please, in the name of all
toacquirethelanguagetheyneedtobesuccessfulinschool.Hereare that is good in language
somestrategiesthatcouldbeincorporatedintodailypractice. and thinking, please let the
Althoughthetasksareseparatedbydomain,manyofthemare children talk.

integrated.Inotherwords,theyhelpdeveloplanguageintwoormore
domains.
Let them talk a great deal;
listen to the equivalent of a
book a day; talk the
Listening equivalent of a book a
week; read the equivalent
of a book a month and
1. ListeningTriadsPlacestudentsintogroupsofthreeandgive
write the equivalent of a
eachanumberfromonetothree.Writethreestatementsor book a year.
conceptsontheboard(canusegraphicstosupport).
Statement/concept1isexplainedtothegroupbyStudent1and
soon.(I.e.socialstudies:1Whatisalocalcommunity?2What -Walter Loban
isanationalcommunity?3Whatisaglobalcommunity?)
2. HandsUpStudentsaregivenasetofquestionsbasedona
text.Thetextisreadaloud,andasstudentsheartheinformation,theyraisetheirhands.
Thequestionsshouldbeintheorderthatinformationisgiveninthetext.
3. InAdditionStudentsofferinformationaboutatopic.Otherslistencarefullyandadd
ontothefirstidea.Sentencestarterscanbeusedtohelpaddtotheideas(I.e.Onething
IcouldaddIhaveadifferentideaaboutthat)
4. ClosingAffirmationAlargepartofAfricanPedagogy,affirmationshelpstudents
acknowledgetheirroleinlearning.Theaffirmationisreadaloudsentencebysentence
bythegroupleader.Thegrouprepeatstheaffirmation.Thesameaffirmationcanbe
usedforthecloseofeachday.Affirmationscanbewrittenbyaclass.(Seeexample)
5. InformationExtractionAtaskcouldbewrittenforstudentstolistentofactsor
opinions.Youcoulduseadocumentary,film,recordingofadebate(etc.)Forfacts,
prepareasheetinchronologicalordercorrespondingtofactsastheyarepresented.
Studentsthentransfertheinformationtothethesheetastheyarelistening.Theycould
makepredictionsaboutinformationbeforelisteningaswell.

Compiledby:MelissaPaton,WIDAProfessionalDevelopmentOutreachSpecialist

6. PictureDictationStudentshaveanumberofindividualpicturesthatcorrespondtoa
story,text,sequencetoanexperiment(etc.).Asthestory,textordirectionsareread
aloud,thestudentsputthepicturesintotherightsequence.
7. DescribeandDrawThiscanbeateacherdirectedorpairsactivity.Onestudentdraws
aseriesofshapes(couldberelatedtoacademiccontent).Thepartnercannotseewhat
isdrawn.Theartistgivesinstructionstothepartnerabouthowtorecreatethedrawing.
(I.eDrawacircleinthemiddleofthepage.Then,drawatriangleinthemiddle.)
8. BarrierGamesTheseareactivitiesthataredoneinpairsandinvolvesolvinga
problem.Theyinvolveaninformationgapwhereeachplayerhasdifferent
informationthateachplayerneedsinordertosolvetheproblem.Playersshouldnotbe
abletoseetheothersinformationbutshouldcommunicatetoeachotherinorderto
solvetheproblemtogether.

Speaking

1. StandandDeliver/JustaMinute Invitestudentstotalkaboutasubjectforoneminute
withouthesitationandrepetition.Ifthestudenthesitatesorrepeats,anotherstudent
maygentlyinterruptandtakeonthetopic.Thisshouldbemodeledsonoonefeels
discouragedaboutparticipation.Encouragestudentstokeeptryingtomakeittothe
oneminutemark!(Note:ItmaybeeasiertostartwithSocial/Instructionallanguage
suchas:Talkaboutyourbestfriendbeforemovingintolanguageofcontentareas.)
2. InquiryandEliminationChoosealargepictureshowingarangeofobjectswithinaset.
Onememberofthegroupchoosesonepicturefromtheset.Theothersmustguess
whatitisbyaskingyesornoquestionsonly.Thisworksbestifyoulimitthenumberof
questionsthatcanbeaskedandencouragestudentstoaskquestionsthatelicitthe
maximumamountofinformation.
3. Taboo Studentscanmakecardsaboutcontentconcepts.Onestudentmustdescribe
theideaonthecardwithoutsayingthetaboowords.Canbeplayedinteamsforpoints.
4. OpeningAffirmations Starteachdaywithacallandresponsethatispositiveand
affirmsthatallstudentsinyourclassroomarelearners.(Seeexample)
5. Think/Pair/Share Poseaquestionorideaormathproblemtostudents.Askthemto
thinkaboutitindividuallytoformideas.Allowthemtimetoworkwithapartnerto
workontheproblemandconstructananswertogether.Partnerspairthensharetheir
workwiththewholegroup.Thisisapowerfulideathatcanandshouldbeusedin
multiplecontentareas.
6. StringAlong Havestudentseachchoosefromabaggiefilledwithstringoryarnof
varyinglengths.Giveatopicandsometimeforthemtoreflectonwhattheywillsay.
(I.e.,Tellussomethingaboutyourbestfriend.orTellusaboutyourfavorite)After

Compiledby:MelissaPaton,WIDAProfessionalDevelopmentOutreachSpecialist

amomenttothinkabouttheprompt,studentstaketurnstalking.Theytalkaboutthe
subjectwhileslowlywrappingthestringaroundafinger.Whenthestringrunsout,the
talkingstopsandmovestothenextstudent.
7. OneMinuteBuzzForoneminute(perhapsshorterforyoungerstudents)talkwith
yourpartneraboutwhatwejustlearned.Whatwastheimportantlearningforyou?
Askstudentstobepreparedtosharethiswiththeclass.(I.e.thebuzzcanbeaboutthe
watercycleoramathconcept)
8. LuckofthedrawfishbowlPlacestudentsnamesinacontainerandpicktwoorthree
namesattheendofclass.Thestudentswhosenamesarechosenprepareabrief
summaryofspecificinformationrecentlylearnedforthenextclassmeeting.


Reading

1. ModeledReading/Readalouds/Thinkaloud Studentslistentotheteacherreadaloud
fromavarietyofgenres.Teacherschoosetextaccordingtopersonalandclassroom
interests,contenttopics,authorsandstrategiesbeingtaught.Specialattentionispaid
tofluent,expressiveoralreading.Selectedteachingpointsarebasedonongoing
observationandassessmentandtargetstudentscurrentneeds.Readaloudsteach
vocabulary,concepts,comprehensionstrategies,writingcraftsandtraits,etc.Teachers
frequentlyrereadtextstoteachadditionalconceptsandextendlearning.Inathink
aloud,teacherspauseandinterjecttheirownthinkingaboutthetext.Athinkaloudwill
modelspecificreadingcomprehensionstrategiesandprovidestudentswithamodelfor
metacognition.Readaloudsareusuallypairedwiththinkaloudssothattheteacheris
readingandthinkingaloudashe/shedemonstratesfluentreadingandthe
metacognitiveprocess(thinkingaboutonesthinking).
2. SharedReadingTheteacherandstudentengageinaninteractivereadingexperience
usingacommontextand/oratextwithlargeprint.Thisinteractionmaybestructured
sothattheteacherreadsaloudwhilestudentsreadalongorallyorsilently.Usually,the
teacherrereadsthetextmanytimesoveraperiodofdayswithstudentsjoininginorally
duringrepeatedreadings.Theuseofbigbooks,largecharts,pocketcharts,
transparencies,ormultiplecopiesoftextensuresthateveryonecanseetheprint.In
sharedreadingattentionfocusesonspecificteachingpointsbasedonongoing
observationandassessmenttotargetstudentscurrentneeds.Teachingpointsmay
includeconceptsofprint,rhyming,predicting,letterorwordrecognition,building
commonbackgroundknowledge,demonstratingandpracticingintonationandpausing,
practicingfluency,etc.

Compiledby:MelissaPaton,WIDAProfessionalDevelopmentOutreachSpecialist

3. ReadersTheaterProvidesanopportunitytorevieworextendamodeledorshared
reading.Studentscanbegroupedheterogeneouslybecausepartscanbeassignedbased
onlanguageandliteracystrengths.Simplepropssuchasmasksorpuppets(providedor
created)canincreasemotivation.

ReadersTheaterroutine:(multiplecopiesoftextareneeded)

Leaderreadsthestoryaloud.
Everyonereadsthestorytogether.
Partnersreadthestoryaloud.
Everyoneisassignedapart.
Studentspracticepartsontheirown.
Studentspracticetheirpartstogether.
Studentsperformfortheclass.
4. JigsawReadingStudentsareplaceintogroupsoffourandaregivendifferentpassages
aboutatopiccontaininginformationthatthewholegroupneedsaboutaquestionor
hypothesis.Passagescanbeassignedatthestudentsindependentlevel.Eachstudent
readsthepassageindependently,takingnotes.Thegroupconvenesandshares
information.Withthesharedinformation,theyformananswertothehypothesisor
question.(Canbeusedatalisteningstationaswell.)
5. StoryInnovationUseanoriginalstoryasthebasisforcreatinganewone.Workingin
groups(orasateacherledactivity),keywordsarechangedtocreateanewstorywhile
retainingtheunderlyingstructure.Forexample,thecharacterscouldbechangedand
eventsarechangedtofitthenewcharacters.Aschangesaremade,thestoryiswritten
onapieceofchartpaper.Studentstaketurnsmakingsuggestionsandreadingthestory
asitiscreatedtoensurethatitmakessense.
6. Sequencing Cutupsectionsoftextandplacetheminenvelopes.Handthemoutto
smallgroupsandgivethegroupstimetoorganizethemintologicalorder.Thesections
couldbegluedandthentheycandiscussanddefendtheirdecisionsinalargergroup.
(I.e.asequenceofeventsrelatedtoanhistoricalevent)
7. WallpaperingGivegoupsofstudentssmallpiecesofpapertowritedownonething
theyknowaboutatopic,oroneideathattheyhaveaboutacontroversialissue.
Studentsthenstickthepiecesofpaperonthewall.Studentswalkaroundtheroomand
readotherstudentsideas.Latertheycancommentontheideasofothers:Iagreewith
theonethatsaidIdidntknowthatIdontthinkthatsright
8. 321Havestudentswritethreethingsthattheyconsidertobeimportanttoremember
fromwhattheyhaveread,twothingstheywouldliketoinvestigatefurtherandone
thingtheywouldliketodoforaproject.

Compiledby:MelissaPaton,WIDAProfessionalDevelopmentOutreachSpecialist

Writing

1. DictoglossStudentslistentotheteacherreadingapassagewithoutwritinganything.
Onthesecondread,studentswriteasmuchasthecan.Studentsthenworkinpairsto
trytorecreatethepassage.Thenstudentsmovetogroupsoffourtonegociatewhat
theyheard.Thepassagecanbereadagainwithstudentsselfcorrectingthepassageor
canbecollectedforinformation.
2. Snowballing Pairupstudentsandaskthemtodiscussathemeortopicorstory.Give
themthreeminutestodiscussandwritedowntheirmostimportantideasonseparate
piecesofpaper.Havethemcrumpletheirideasandthrowintothecenteroftheroom.
Thepairjoinsanotherpairtomakeagroupoffourandtheyhaveanotherthreeminutes
tocomeupwiththreenewideastoaddtothesnowballpile.Youcancontinuemaking
biggergroups.Readfromthesnowballpileorhavestudentschooseasnowballto
writeaboutthatday.
3. WordSplashKeycontentrelatedwordiswrittenonboardforstudentsto
spontaneouslyaddwords/phrasesassociatedwiththetopic.
4. GraffitiWriteGroupsofstudentsrespondtocontentrelatedquestionprompts
introducingatopiconstationsaroundtheroominasequentialmanner.Allowthemto
growthroughthestationsatleasttwotimestorespondtheideasofothers.
5. ResponseJournalStudentsreactregularlyinjournalformtoquestionpromptsbased
onwhattheyhaveread.
6. StickyNotesWithsticky(postit)notes,havestudentswritedownIwonderif...or
Thisremindsmeof...promptstodemonstratepossiblequestionsorthoughts.Can
alsobeusedforcomprehensionstrategies(predicting,makingconnections,etc.)
7. ExitSlipsHavestudentsprovideabriefwrittensummaryofwhattheyhavereadjust
priortotheendofthelesson.Canbeformalorinformalslips.
8. SequencingUseasetofpicturesthatillustrateasequence.Individually,inpairsorin
groups,studentsputthepicturesintheproperorder.Theydescribethesequenceand
problemsolveuntiltheycometoagreementontheorder.Studentsthenwriteabout
thesequenceorcreateanoriginalstory.Achallengingadaptationistogiveeach
studentinathegrouponecardandtellthemnottoshowthecard.Eachstudent
describesthecard(anyonecanstart).Whenallhavefinisheddescribingthecards,the
groupnegociatestheorderofthecardsbasedonthedescriptions.Theythenplacethe
cardsinorderbasedonthediscussion.

Compiledby:MelissaPaton,WIDAProfessionalDevelopmentOutreachSpecialist

ClassroomTeachersESLSurvivalKit#1,ElizabethClarie,JudieHaynes,PrenticeHallRegents,
1994

DanishPeaceConference,2004

NewcomerProgram,ElizabethClaire,JudieHaynes,PrenticeHallRegents,1997

ScaffoldingLanguage,ScaffoldingLearning:TeachingSecondLanguageLearnersinthe
MainstreamClassroom,PaulineGibbons,2002

Compiledby:MelissaPaton,WIDAProfessionalDevelopmentOutreachSpecialist

Strategy Comparison
Strategy General Description Uses for this Strategy Domain Level
(I.e. formative assessment, (Listening, Speaking, Grade level cluster,
differentiation/scaffolding of Reading orWriting- language level
instruction and assessment) integrates domains)