Larry Ferlazzo’s Websites of the Day…

…For Teaching ELL, ESL, & EFL

February 15, 2018
by Larry Ferlazzo
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Research Studies Of The Week

'magnifying glass' photo (c) 2005, Tall Chris - license: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

I often write about research studies from various fields and how they can be applied to the classroom. I write individual posts about ones that I think are especially significant, and will continue to do so. However, so many studies are published that it’s hard to keep up. So I’ve started writing a “round-up” of some of them each week or every other week as a regular feature.

By the way, you might also be interested in My Best Posts On New Research Studies In 2017 – Part Two.

Here are some new useful studies (and related resources):

Eye exams linked to kids’ reading levels is from Eureka Alert. I’m adding it to The Best Places To Learn What Impact A Teacher (& Outside Factors) Have On Student Achievement.

Back-and-forth exchanges boost children’s brain response to language is from Science Daily. I’m adding it to The Best Resources For Learning About The “Word Gap”

New study highlights the struggles and strengths of Latino teachers is from Ray Salazar. I’m adding it to New & Revised: The Best Resources For Understanding Why We Need More Teachers Of Color.

New Stanford Study: A Positive Attitude Literally Makes Your Brain Work Better is from Inc. I’m adding it to The Best Resources On Helping Our Students Develop A “Growth Mindset.”

February 12, 2018
by Larry Ferlazzo
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Interesting Study On “Transfer” Reinforces Effectiveness Of “Learning By Doing”

 

I’ve written about about “transfer of learning” and how I’ve tried to apply it in class (see The Best Resources For Learning About The Concept Of “Transfer” — Help Me Find More).

And I’ve shared a lot about the importance of assisting students to follow the idea of “learning by doing” (see The Best Research Demonstrating That Lectures Are Not The Best Instructional Strategy and The Best Posts Questioning If Direct Instruction Is “Clearly Superior”).

Today, a post by Daniel Willingham (A New Idea to Promote Transfer) about a study on transfer of learning brings those two ideas together.

The study itself is pretty incomprehensible to a non-academic like me, but, as usual, Dan does a great job putting it into layperson’s terms.

Analogies are great ways to promote transfer (see my Ed Week video at the bottom of this post for more info). But even they don’t always work.

The study found that if teachers first introduce the analogy/story and then ask students to write a similar story before they challenge students to apply the analogy to a solving a problem, they’ll do a much better job of transfer than if they are asked to apply only the analogy given by the teacher.

It seems to me this, once again, reinforces the importance of learning by doing. It’s similar to research that shows students find lessons more relevant if they are challenged to write about how they will apply it in real life instead of teachers telling them the connection (see The Best Ideas For Helping Students Connect Lessons To Their Interests & The World).

However, it’s hard for me to see how this study has other practical implications in helping students understand transfer of learning outside of incorporating it in the context of a specific lesson on transfer (like the ones I’ve done and written about).  Let me know if you have other ideas.

February 12, 2018
by Larry Ferlazzo
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Study Shows Positive Impact Of Ed Tech On ELLs & Students With Special Needs

A new study has found what much previous research has concluded – good use of ed tech can have a positive impact on all students, but especially on ELLs and students with special needs.

Here’s an excerpt from Web-based teaching can improve science understanding for struggling pupils:

 

I’m adding it to The Best Research Available On The Use Of Technology In Schools.

February 8, 2018
by Larry Ferlazzo
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Great Infographic: “You’re Hired: The Skills Employers Seek in New Hires”

From Washington, DC: Regional Educational Laboratory Mid-Atlantic comes this great infographic, which you can download here in full size.

I’m adding it to:

The Best Info On Skills Employers Are Looking For In Job-Seekers

The Best Social Emotional Learning (SEL) Resources

By the way, here’s their response when I asked for permission to republish it here:

We’re happy to have you publish the infographic with attribution to the REL Mid-Atlantic. The document is in the public domain.

It would be great if researchers made finding accessible through infographics!

February 2, 2018
by Larry Ferlazzo
0 comments

Around The Web In ESL/EFL/ELL

Five years ago I began this regular feature where I share a few posts and resources from around the Web related to ESL/EFL or to language in general that have caught my attention.

You might also be interested in The Best Resources, Articles & Blog Posts For Teachers Of ELLs In 2017 – So Far. and The Best Resources, Articles & Blog Posts For Teachers Of ELLs In 2017 – Part Two. Also, check out A Collection Of My Best Resources On Teaching English Language Learners.

In addition, look for our next book on teaching ELLs, which will be published in the Spring of 2018.

Here are this week’s choices:

Edraak is a Arabic-language teaching and learning platform. It was started by the Queen of Jordan. The site has an ESL program and I’m wondering if it would be useful for secondary students. I’d love to hear from teachers who have tried it out. Here’s video about it:

I’ve periodically used existing Chatbots with students for language-learning activities (see The Best Online “Chatbots” For Practicing English). I’m now exploring the possibility of having students create their own for their classmates to use. There are some free tools that seem pretty easy to use, like Rebot. And Botsify will also let you create a audio one for Alexa. Again, I’d love to hear from teachers who might have tried this strategy already.

Do People Say is an intriguing new site that might, or might not, be helpful to ELLs. It lets you “find the context where English word or phrase is used or check if it is used by English speakers at all.” Here’s a video about it:

Bilingualism Benefits Low-income Children is from Language Magazine. I’m adding it to The Best Resources For Learning The Advantages To Being Bilingual.

Schools key to successful integration of child refugees, says study is from Eureka Alert. I’m adding it to The Best Sites For Learning About World Refugee Day.

Lost In Translation: The Power Of Language To Shape How We View The World is from NPR.

How to Use Microsoft Translator is from Richard Byrne. I’m adding it to The Best Sites For Learning About Google Translate & Other Forms Of Machine Translation.

The Shallowness of Google Translate is from The Atlantic. I’m adding it to the same list.

Trump’s immigrant crackdown brings ‘blanket of fear’ to Houston schools is from The Houston Chronicle.

This tweet shares an interesting YouTube channel. I’m adding it to The Best Sites For Learning About The World’s Different Cultures:

I’m adding this next tweet to The Best Video Clips Of Sneaky Critters — Help Me Find More:

I’m adding this tweet to The Best Resources For Learning About The Importance Of Prior Knowledge (& How To Activate It):

February 1, 2018
by Larry Ferlazzo
0 comments

Research Studies Of The Week

'magnifying glass' photo (c) 2005, Tall Chris - license: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

I often write about research studies from various fields and how they can be applied to the classroom. I write individual posts about ones that I think are especially significant, and will continue to do so. However, so many studies are published that it’s hard to keep up. So I’ve started writing a “round-up” of some of them each week or every other week as a regular feature.

By the way, you might also be interested in My Best Posts On New Research Studies In 2017 – Part Two.

Here are some new useful studies (and related resources):

How talented kids from low-income families become America’s “Lost Einsteins” appeared in Salon. I’m adding it to The Best Reports On The New “Lost Einsteins” Study.

RESEARCH BITES – ELABORATIVE INTERROGATION is a useful research review. I’m adding it to The Best Resources For Learning About The Value Of “Self-Explanation”

The top of this chat has some interesting info on an infamous study on classroom walls. I’m adding it to The Best Posts On The Study Suggesting That Bare Classroom Walls Are Best For Learning.

Quality of children’s sleep may affect eating habits and weight is from Science Daily. I’m adding it to The Best Resources For Helping Teens Learn About The Importance Of Sleep.

Publish or (the field will) perish: Blended learning needs more peer-reviewed publications is from Brookings. I’m adding it to The Best Research Available On The Use Of Technology In Schools.

Did new evaluations and weaker tenure make fewer people want to become teachers? A new study says yes is from Chalkbeat.

January 29, 2018
by Larry Ferlazzo
0 comments

In Education, If It Sounds Too Good To Be True, It Probably Is….

 

Matt Barnum wrote an excellent piece today on an obviously inflated research result touting the benefits of personalized learning (see Why ‘personalized learning’ advocates like Mark Zuckerberg keep citing a 1984 study — and why it might not say much about schools today).

The search for the silver bullet in education never seems to end, and that search is carried on by people who should be smart enough to know that there isn’t one.

Really, it’s doing a lot of little things right that add up.

Personalized learning – both tech and non-tech – can have a positive impact on student learning (though it is clearly not a cure-all), and there’s a fair amount of research that documents that fact (see The Best Resources For Understanding “Personalized Learning”). I talk about what it looks like in my classroom in my ASCD Educational Leadership article, Student Engagement: Key to Personalized Learning.

There’s also a lot of research, and – it appears to me – substantial agreement (with some exceptions), from research about what effective teachers should do (see The “Best” Lists Of Recommendations About What “Effective” Teachers Do).

It seems to me that we teachers, our students and their families would be far better off focusing on improving all the smaller actions that can add up to moderately improved learning than searching for a phantom solution that hits it out of the ballpark.

Supposed silver bullets seldom appear to hit their target (see The Best Posts About Attrition Rates At So-Called “Miracle” Schools).

 

 

 

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