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Integrating Language, Content, and Learning Strategies in English Language Teaching

Anna Uhl Chamot The George Washington University

Integrating Language, Content, and Learning Strategies in English Language Teaching

What is CALLA-FL?
An instructional model that promotes thinking in the language class. Provides authentic content. Practices both academic and social language. Teaches learning strategies.

Anna Uhl Chamot The George Washington University

Why promote thinking in the English class?


Need for critical thinkers. High standards in education. Career challenges. Independent and life -long learning. Motivation. Self-knowledge and reflection.

Five instructional principles in CALLA-FL


Recognize and build on students prior knowledge. Provide meaningful learning tasks. Engage in interactive teaching and learning. Focus on learning processes and strategies. Help students evaluate their own learning.

CALLA-FL: The Cognitive Academic Language Learning Approach for Foreign Languages COMPONENTS: AUTHENTIC CONTENT ACADEMIC LANGUAGE LEARNING STRATEGIES

Why should English teachers teach content?


Develops reading, writing, and speaking across curriculum areas. Provides authentic texts and materials. Develops discipline -specific vocabulary and discourse. Provides access to new information in English. Motivates students through interesting topics.

Integrating Language, Content, and Learning Strategies in English Language Teaching

Anna Uhl Chamot The George Washington University

What kinds of content?


Aligned to students needs and interests. Cognitively appropriate. Content information and content processes. Focus: school subjects, personal interests, popular culture, careers, history, literature, performing and visual arts.

How to select content?


Identify content appropriate for students age and interests. Relate topics thematically. Include a variety of disciplines: history, literature, mathematics, science, art, music, etc. Vary sequence of content areas.

How can English teachers teach content?


Find out students interests. Study the school or university curriculum. Look at students textbooks for major content subjects. Identify major concepts and themes. Find material through a variety of resources, including the Internet.

What is the language component of CALLA-FL?


Language development through curriculum and cultural areas. Vocabulary and discourse of content subjects and cultural topics. Linked to students prior linguistic and cultural knowledge. Language and cultural awareness.

Integrating Language into Content Topics


Provide language activities with each content infusion. Teach vocabulary and discourse of content subjects. Develop reading, listening, speaking, and writing in all content areas. Use students prior linguistic knowledge. Develop language awareness: grammar, spelling, pronunciation, and usage.

How can ESL students learn new content and new language simultaneously?
Language activities added to content activities. Development of content vocabulary. Focus on students prior knowledge and interests. High teacher expectations. Instruction in learning strategies.

Integrating Language, Content, and Learning Strategies in English Language Teaching

Anna Uhl Chamot The George Washington University

What are learning strategies?


Thoughts and actions that learners use to help them to complete a learning task. Ways to understand, remember, and recall information. Ways to practice skills so that they are mastered more easily.

WHY TEACH LEARNING STRATEGIES? Show students how to be better learners. Build students self-efficacy. Increase student motivation for learning. Help students become reflective and critical thinkers.

WHAT IS A GOOD STRATEGY? Is it appropriate for the task? Do students perceive it as useful? Can students use it fairly easily? Does it help long-term retention? Can the teacher model it?

Ten Learning Strategies


Planning Selective Attention Predicting Making Inferences Using Background Knowledge Using Imagery Taking Notes Cooperating with Peers Summarizing Evaluating Self

Teaching Learning Strategies


Model the strategy by thinking aloud. Name the strategy. Have students describe their strategy use. Have students practice the strategy with content and language tasks. Have students evaluate the strategy.

Developing Metacognition
Model metacognitive awareness. Ask students to describe their thinking processes. Have students take responsibility for their own learning.