Language arts in first and second languages play an important role in the academic success of English Language Learners (ELLs). That is why it is so important to encourage parent engagement; so that parents can help their children learn and strengthen their first language. With the skills in place from their first language, ELLs can then learn their second language at a much faster rate. There are several resources and methods that teachers can use to encourage parent engagement to support language arts in first and second languages. Read on to learn more about these resources and methods.
A sound approach to learning language arts begins with learning and enforcing first language skills. Once ELLs are confident and have strong skills in their native language, it is much easier to learn their second language, which is oftentimes English. At the Latino Family Literacy Project, we like to focus on this approach of learning both first and second languages simultaneously. We encourage teachers and parents to visit Lectura Books for tools and additional resources to utilize this approach.
Lectura Books offers an array of bilingual books that are culturally representative of Latino ELL students and their families. These bilingual books help support first and second language acquisition, as both parents and children are reading in their first language while learning a second language.
Another great way to support language arts in first and second languages is using phonics. Lectura Books offers a phonics program geared towards ELLs called Family Phonics. This program was created specifically for ELL parents and children. The program includes 3 different levels of books that cover core phonics objectives such as learning simple words, vowels, and rhyming words. Additionally, this program encourages parental engagement and ideally meets Title I Parent Involvement needs.
For more information on encouraging parental engagement and supporting language arts in first and second language among ELL students and families, visit the Latino Literacy Program. We offer an array of resources and information for teachers working with ELL Latino children and families. We also offer webinars and workshops that provide methods and techniques that can be used in the classroom and when communicating with parents.