English Language Learners
& Library Partnerships
Ruth Hall, ACL, Earl Haig SS Library, TDSB
Sandy Katz, Instructional Leader, ESL/ELD, TDSB
Session 1808
Ontario Library Association Superconference, Feb 27, 2010
Workshop Focus
 Relationships with ESL students
 ESL curriculum and research tasks
 Connections to a Research Model
 Building a skills continuum with research
 Modifications and accommodations for ESL
 Other Issues & Differentiated End Products
What does it mean…..
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Building Relationships
The Library is a safe place
T-L connects with many
classes, subjects, grades
Support students:
Help with assignments,
resources, avoiding plagiarism
Support teachers:
Help with assignments,
resources, avoiding plagiarism
Library as ESL
Curriculum Rationale
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•“Inquiry is at the heart of learning
in all subject areas.” p.52
 “In ESL and ELD courses, students will
develop their ability to pose questions and to
explore a variety of answers to those
questions” p.52
ESL and ELD Ontario Curriculum grades 9 -12 (2007)
Locating Information
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 Locate key information relating to the school and
community in a variety of simple texts
 Locate information for a variety of purposes in
simplified or adapted informational and graphic
texts selected in collaboration with the teacherlibrarian
 Locate information on classroom topics from
appropriate research materials selected in
consultation with the teacher-librarian, and
acknowledge their sources
Extract & Organize Information
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 Extract and organize key facts from information
texts designed or adapted for beginning learners
of English
 Extract information from informational and graphic
texts designed or adapted for English language
learners, and organize it using a graphic
 Extract information from a variety of sources and
organize it using appropriate outlines and
graphic organizers
Critical Thinking
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Identify the sources of information used
Compare information from a number of
sources on a topic for a classroom
research assignment
Identify sources of information used and
evaluate them for reliability and point of
Inquiry & ESL Friendly Assignments
Teacher-librarian offers help with:
Creating or modifying the assignment
Finding resources at the right level
Library Resources
 Elementary resources which can be modified to
“hide” the junior audience
 Sources with headings and graphics
 Online encyclopedias and reference books
 Online news articles (different levels)
 Reluctant reader materials
 Knowledge Ontario databases
 Elementary KO resources
 Recommended websites (pathfinders)
 Public Library
Considerations with English
Language Learners (ELL)
 Support literacy skills in first language
 Expect use of first language
 Silent period
 Opportunities to demonstrate what they know
 Different end products, not always language based
 Teach reading strategies (features of text)
 Projects should support broad language acquisition
 Move beyond mere copying to critical thinking
 Providing resources as a way to focus students
What is school like in other
Learning environment
Role of teacher
Type of learning - K/U
Challenges with critical thinking
Plagiarism issues
Research Model:
have kids had this kind of teaching?
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Together for Learning:
school libraries and the
emergence of the
Learning Commons a
vision for the 21st
century. OSLA. (2010)
Why a research model works for
Provides a structure or map for students
• consistency and common language
• transferable to all subjects and grade
• framework for:
designing projects
developing skills
assessing & evaluating
(Preparing for Research)
Stage 1:
Starts in the classroom
Introduce content
Introduce skills
Engage interest
Stage 1: Preparing
The Animals Project:
 Start with classroom activities about riddles &
answer question about wolves
 Students learn how to answer questions on a
nonfiction topic using a graphic organizer
 Engage interest using visuals which allow students
to engage prior knowledge and to choose topics
 Quick write (from the picture & prior knowledge)
 Next step - research in the library
Stage 1: Preparing
The Unexplained Mysteries Project
 In classroom read “Marie Celeste”
 Practice writing and answering 5 W research
 Brainstorm - what other unexplained mysteries do
you know?
 View slideshow of mystery topics
Guess what it is
What it’s called
What makes this a mystery
 Choose 1 mystery to research in the library
 Write research questions
Stage 1 - Preparing
Inventors and their Inventions Project
 In classroom teacher introduces the inventor, Alexander
Graham Bell
 Use the question matrix to create questions about Bell
under the headings:
The inventor
The process
The invention
 Read a simple info text on Bell to find answers
Formative activity
 View CBC Website - choose an invention
The Greatest Canadian Invention
Using the Research Process – Putting it
into Context
Ensures students understand the research
Activates student’s prior knowledge and
higher level thinking skills
Acknowledges the need for accessible
Diminishes “cut and paste” research
Teaches students a transferable skill
Using the Research Process – Putting it
into Context con’t
High Yield strategies:
Questions, Cues, and Advance
Organizers - 22% (Marzano)
Note-taking & Summarizing - 34%
Other than attendance, the greatest
impact on student achievement comes
from non-fiction writing (Reeves)
After Stage 1: A through C
Take some time to notice how the projects
fits into the steps of the research process
 Use the graphic organizer to identify the
scaffolding of skills from level A to C
Modifications & Accommodations
Working with ELL students who are not
in ESL classes:
adaptation =
accommodations &/or modifications
OR Differentiated Instruction (DI)…
What is Differentiated Instruction (DI)
(Based on Carol Tomlinson’s model of differentiated instruction)
ELL Considerations:
-Research in first language (background)
-Building literacy skills in both languages
-KO - translation
A note about Wikipedia
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Knowledge Ontario
Gale Cengage - Virtual Reference Collection
Science of Everyday Things
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Writing Questions: Putting it into Context
Taps into students prior knowledge
Clarifies/reinforces knowledge and
Provides a low-risk environment where
ELLs can share ideas and participate in
consensus-building tasks
Writing-to-learn strategy: Graffiti
 Put students in groups of 3
 Choose from 6 WH charts to stand beside
 Write research questions for the topic The
Bermuda Triangle under your ‘wh’ heading
 Every 3 minutes move to the next chart.
 Read the questions on the chart and add your
 Go back to where you started. Label the
questions ‘thick’ and thin’.
 Choose the three best questions and present
them to the group.
Other Issues: Plagiarism
How to minimize copy & paste responses
Answering questions, not general topics
Being engaged in the topic
Use of visuals to activating prior
Formative activities in the classroom
 Student generated questions, not teacher
Monitor the process in stages (e.g. notes by
source, storyboard planner)
Other Issues: Presentations
Using Storyboard organizers to plan
effective presentations
Why breaking down tasks is essential
How storyboarding works
Understanding the difference between slide
content and spoken content
Plan first - use computer after
Different End Products
 The process remains the same but the outcome
can be different
Provide a situation - zoo guide, invention
create a podcast to listen to at each station
Use comic life to publish your mystery on
the web
Forest of Reading - class book club in wiki
White Pine Wiki
tabs make
navigation simple
The goals of the White Pine Award
promote reading for enjoyment
make students aware of Canadian issues
addressed in young adult books
provide opportunities for students to
discuss the nominated titles in an
authentic, academic manner
Student responses
“When you don’t feel the school and class
environment, I think you feel more
comfortable so you can share ideas
“ We need to use formal English… we can’t
use MSN language or swearing words.
And it can correct our bad habits.”
Benefits of ESL-Library Relationship
Build student trust
Ongoing support, all subjects
Safe haven
Skill building, all grades
Access to technology
Support new &
experienced teachers
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The Exit Slip Strategy: Final Reflections
Reflection Framework #1
3 important ideas that I
want to remember
2 things I would like to OR
know more about
1 idea/strategy that I will
implement with my
what I
So what
does this
mean for
what am I
going to
do about
ESL & Library partners in
student success
Thank you very much!

ESL Workshop