In addition to keeping-up with the latest overall education news, I’m obviously particularly interested in the latest research and policy issues related to teaching English Language Learners.
I thought readers might find it helpful to see what I’ve found to be the best free sources of this kind of information, so I’ve developed yet another “The Best…” list.
These sites are different from the ones I shared in The Best Resource Sites For ESL/EFL Teachers. Those sites share immediately practical ideas and materials that can be used in the classroom — today.
The sites on this list are more related to on-going research and policy issues connected to English Language Learners.
Here they are, not necesarily in order of preference:
The key blog I like that provides regular updates on ELL research and news is Learning The Language at Edweek.
TESOL Connections is a nice e-newsletter that’s sent out twice-a-month. However, you have to be a TESOL member in order to receive it (the archives will soon be available, though, to non-members). A “second-best” free TESOL resource that’s available to anyone is called The English Language Bulletin, which provides reports on ESL/EFL around the world.
The Center On Instruction has a ton of resources on research-based instructional practices in all subject areas.Because of its good materials on English Language Learners, I’m now adding it to this list.
Mary Ann Zehr (the author of the must-read Learning The Language blog) wrote about The American Institutes For Research expanding their interest in English Language Learners. I had never heard of the group, but apparently it’s a pretty big outfit. They have a webpage with some nice ELL resources and I’m adding them to this list.
Learning Port contains over 700 professional development resources from many organizations, including the NEA, the AFT, Edutopia, Colorin Colorado, and a ton more. It looks pretty good. It has a good section on English Language Learners.
The Migrant Policy Institute has launched the English Language Learner Information Center. They say it’s designed to:
provide informative fact sheets, maps, and state-level data resources that chronicle the demography and trends of immigrant families and their children.
It has a ton of accessible info, and may become the “go to” place for ELL data.
The ELT Journal, from The Oxford Journals, is a very nice collection of articles that teachers of English Language Learners would find useful. The collection, titled Key Concepts In ELT, is described this way on the top of the webpage:
‘Key Concepts in ELT’ is a feature of the Journal that aims to assist readers to develop an appreciation of central ideas in ELT, and to approach the content of articles from a perspective informed by current debate on aspects of theory and practice.
The list given below is an up-to-date guide to all ‘Key Concepts’ that have been published in the Journal. The list contains links to the original articles, which are available to download free of charge (PDF file).
ERIC , the Education Resources Information Center
Teaching English from the British Council
The LINCS (Literacy Information And Communication System) Resource Collection — Basic Skills is a good source of research on teaching and learning. It’s not specifically geared towards ELL’s, but much of the research is still relevant to them.
ASCD has quite a few research resources on teaching English Language Learners.
Diversity Learning K12 is a partnership between a number of respected researchers and practitioners in the ESL/EFL field, including Stephen Krashen and James Crawford. Here are some direct links to particularly useful pages on their website:
Teaching English Language Learners: What The Research Does and Does Not Say is by Claude Goldenberg.
The Center For Applied Second Language Studies has recently redesigned its website, and it looks great. You can find tons of research on this page of their site, or go to their ten most asked questions list.
AccELLerate! is the free quarterly newsletter of National Clearinghouse For English Language Acquisition. That link leads you to the issue archive.
David Deubelbeiss has collected some great resources at his School of TEFL.
The Marzano Research Laboratory doesn’t have a lot of research specifically for ELL’s, but most of its work can still be applied to them. You can either watch previous webinars they’ve hosted, or just download PDF’s of them. They also have book excerpts and reproducibles.
The Government of Alberta’s (Canada) Education website has an incredible page on research about teaching English Language Learners.
The WRITE Institute has a collection of useful research teaching English Language Learners.
The Department of Education just unveiled a revamped “What Works” website highlighting the results of their varied research. It seems to have a number of accessible tools. You can read more about it at Education Week. They seem to have surprisingly little on English Language Learners, but I’m still adding it to this list. One would think it would eventually have something useful related to ELL’s on the site.
Adolescent Literacy Research & Reports comes from Adlit.org. It has a wealth of research on a variety of related topics, including English Language Learners.
The Backseat Linguist is a new blog related to research on second language acquisition. It comes recommended by Stephen Krashen.
The National Clearinghouse for English Language Acquisition (NCELA) recently unveiled a newly-designed website. Here’s how it describes the site:
NCELA is proud to present our newly designed website (still at www.ncela.gwu.edu) that combines high-quality and oft-requested information about the English learner population with new features to make navigation easier and more intuitive. The website has a distinctive new look, and a thorough restructuring of the front page, bringing up-to-the-minute information to the fore. Visitors will find it easier to access key online content areas including information on federal grants, EL data and demographics, professional development, promising practices in EL education, and the full suite of NCELA resources.
Mapping Language: Limited English Proficiency in America is a very impressive interactive map (among other things) showing where English Language Learners are around the United States. It’s from the National Journal.
Feel free to provide additional suggestions in the comments section of this post.
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