New Jersey Department of Education

DOE A to Z: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z #

English Language Learners (ELL) in the Mainstream

Part Four: Let's Put it All Together

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Assessment Strategies

Summary: Comprehensible input: "i + 1"*, and suggested strategies such as primary sources, modified speech, rate of speech, type of sentence structure; no idiomatic language; error correction; providing students with expectations; alternative assessment such as portfolios, and journals so that students can monitor their own progress. [Time: 3.46 min. there is background noise]
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Comprehensible input

Design a Variety of Alternative Assessments - Assessments should be tailored to students current level of English language ability. Some suggestions for alternate and ongoing evaluation of student content knowledge, include:

  • Group response [e.g. oral, written, demonstrated]
  • Use of manipulatives, picture files, oral summary
    • Mathematics: Create computational [addition, subtraction, multiplication and division] sentences with manipulatives.
    • Science: Put planet pieces [pictures, representations of each planet, etc.] in order of distance from the sun or divide into groups by size or features.
    • Science: Place labels next to the parts of a plant.
    • Literature: Put picture cards of story events in order to summarize the story.
  • Use of a graphic organizer [e.g. web, t-chart, etc.] which can have:
    • Partial answers included.
    • A word bank for open ended, closed, and multiple choice assessments.
    • Partially completed timelines; teachers decide how many items students must match to dates.

Example: Major Events Leading to American Independence

1775 1775 1775-76 1776 1778 1778 1781 1783
1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8.

1. Battle of Lexington and Concord
3. Second Continental Congress meets
5. American army spends difficult winter at Valley Forge
8. Americans and British sign final peace treaty in Paris.

Choose the correct event to match #2, 4, 6, and 7

  • Congress approves the Declaration of Independence
  • British surrender at Yorktown
  • Battle of Bunker Hill
  • France enters the war to help the Americans
    • Dialogue journals
    • Performance and/or observational checklist [see "Retelling Checklist"].
    • Tests of key concepts
    • Thumbs up/Thumbs down: Students who are below intermediate levels may respond to "yes/no" questions by placing their thumbs up or pointing their thumbs down.
    • Numbered Answer Cards: Students may use cards with numbers to indicate answers to math problems or choose the appropriate answer from a group of possible answers.
    • Matching flash cards:
      • Match dates and events
      • Match cause and event
      • Match vocabulary word and definition
      • Match picture and part
    • Picture frames to draw and represent sequence of events