Reflection: ELL Students Digging up Fossils! - Section 2: Engage


This hands-on task requires a precision that keeps the students extremely engaged and this provides me with extra freedom to spend time sitting with ELL students and engaging them in one-one conversations related to the topic we are studying.  When opportunities such as this arise, I make a targeted effort to confer first with students who need additional support with language development.  I have a list I keep in the front of my binder that I use to keep track of when and with whom I hold these mini-conferences, and I also keep very simple anecdotal notes about key details related to their oral language development.  For example, I have one student who is always eager to explain his thinking.  His refusal to be daunted by the double workload of first composing his thoughts and then searching for the correct words in a second language humbles me.  This child speaks in a much more detailed way than he writes.  In speaking, he pauses a lot to search for words, but does then speak in complex sentences.  When he writes, he uses simple sentences and frequently begins them all with the same word (I, the, and so on). So when I spoke to him about his observations I pointed out to him that he was starting each sentence differently, restated the words he had just used to start several sentences, and said that he could use these words when he wrote as well.  

  ELL Students: Hands-on
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Digging up Fossils!

Unit 4: Fossil Evidence
Lesson 7 of 8

Objective: SWBAT participate in a mock fossil dig and use a simple key to identify fossils from the Pliocene Age in North Carolina.

Big Idea: Fossils can informa us about past environments.

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5 teachers like this lesson
Science, fossils
  105 minutes
mossosaur flickr
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