Sheltered instruction is the generic name for an instructional research-based model known as the Sheltered Instruction Observational Protocol or SIOP. The instructional model presents an eight-component lesson plan to facilitate learning in the content areas for English Language Learners. Fifty New Jersey ESL and bilingual educators have been trained in this model. A brief synopsis of this model is presented below. For a sample lesson plan demonstrating the use of the SIOP model, visit the SIOP Institute web site at: http://www.siopinstitute.net/lessonplans.shtml.
Preparation - Teachers prepare lessons with:
- Clearly defined content objectives.
- Language objectives which address the language of content [e.g., language functions, language skills, syntax, and vocabulary].
- Supplementary materials.
- Adaptation of content so that students are learning through meaningful activities.
- Age, grade, language level appropriate topics.
Building Background - Teachers build background knowledge of content topics by:
- Linking concepts to student background and between past and new learning. [See a discussion of concept-linking in Mosaic of Thought.]
- Choose and emphasize key vocabulary.
Comprehensible Input - Teachers provide and use techniques to facilitate understanding of new content:
- Speech appropriate to student proficiency level. [Refer to descriptions and suggestions in "Use a variety of Instructional Strategies."]
- Clear explanation of tasks to be accomplished.
- Variety of techniques are used to make content clear [e.g., visuals, hands-on demonstrations, use of body language, etc.].
Strategies - Teachers use and teach strategies to students. See CALLA.
Interaction - Teachers provide opportunities for frequent interactions—teacher/student and student/student by:
- Using different grouping configurations.
- Providing wait time for responses.
- Providing opportunities for students to clarify concepts in first language with an aide, peer, or first language resource.
Practice/Application - Teachers develop lessons which include numerous opportunities to practice new content concepts:
- With hands-on and/or manipulatives.
- By developing activities which allow students to apply content and language knowledge using all four language skills [e.g., speaking, listening, reading, and writing].
Lesson Delivery - Teachers insure that their lesson will "work" by:
- Clearly defined and supported content and language objects.
- Making sure students are aware of both content and language objectives for each lesson.
- Making sure students are engaged in the lesson 90-100% of the lesson [meaning lessons are interactive and not lecture].
- Setting the pace according to students' current ability level.
Lesson Review/Assessment - Teachers review concepts and conduct assessments appropriate for students' current ability level through:
- A comprehensive review of key concepts and vocabulary throughout the lesson and unit of instruction.
- Providing students with continuous feedback.
- Ongoing assessment of student comprehension of concepts and learning.