Sunday, October 21, 2012

Socio Cultural Aspect of Schooling for ELLs

      I would like to address an important aspect of ELLs, which is related to their literacy in their own language. As a first immigrant, I realize that the young students who are learning English in school, may not be necessarily literate and/or fluent in the language that is spoken in their homes. Most parents whose primary language is not English, try to restrict their children's exposure to their own language with an intention that it will help them in English acquisition at a faster pace. However, the fallacy of this  notion can't be overstated. What they don't realize is the fact that learning any language gives the children opportunity to acquire strong vocabulary and huge fund of knowledge about a different culture, both of which are a great resource in their language and social development. The vocabulary in any language can be translated in English and the knowledge that they already have helps them gain the understanding of their global environment and respect the other students' identity, who come from different cultures and background. Without strong hold in any language, these children may feel lost and incapable to express themselves. Whenever possible in my capacity, I will try my best to inform and educate the parents of ELLs about the importance of gaining literacy in their native language in English acquisition.

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