English as an Additional Language Program (EAL)
Language Acquisition at SCIS
SCIS creates a multi-lingual learning environment in which the language of instruction is English, while also fostering other languages, including mother tongue. The acquisition of additional languages provides students the opportunity to thrive within our culturally rich community. The ability to communicate in a variety of modes in more than one language is essential to the concept of an international education that promotes intercultural understanding.
English as an Additional Language (EAL) at SCIS: Grades 1-5
Our English as an Additional Language (EAL) program supports English language development in the context of our English learners’ school day. Our program follows research and evidence-based best practices in academic language acquisition. It is guided by WIDA’s English Language Development Standards and is aligned with IB PYP philosophies. Through our program, our EAL and homeroom teachers maximize co-planning, co-teaching and co-assessing time to integrate content, language, and literacy instruction effectively, which accelerates academic language development. Additionally, SCIS provides all our teachers with professional learning opportunities in best practices in teaching English learners. All of our teachers are language teachers.
SCIS HQ-Main Lower School has adopted two EAL program models to support the various proficiency levels of our students acquiring academic English: A Pull-out Model and a Co-Teaching Model.
Pull-Out Model (Stage 1): New English learners in stage 1 receive instruction from an EAL teacher during an EAL Pull-Out period every day. The instruction for the new English Learner groups is specifically targeted for their “entering” English proficiency level needs.
Co-Teaching Model (Stages 1, 2 & 3): English learners in stages 1, 2 and 3 receive EAL support in the Co-Teaching Model. EAL teachers co-teach with homeroom teachers in the students’ homeroom classrooms. Co-teaching benefits students’ English language growth in many ways. Through co-teaching, language instruction is integrated with content and literacy instruction, which accelerates academic language growth. It also provides students with additional opportunities to work in smaller, teacher-facilitated groups, with more reading, writing, speaking and listening activities. EAL and homeroom teachers collaborate closely to target your child’s his/her individual goals based on his/her English Language Proficiency Levels.
EAL Program Progression and Exit: What you can expect
SCIS teachers collaborate to analyze multiple sources of data and classroom performance when considering EAL program progression and exit for each English Learner. Generally, students exit the EAL program when they can demonstrate grade-level proficiency on several assessments in conjunction with classroom performance. Please contact your child’s EAL teacher if you have questions regarding your child’s English development and SCIS’s EAL program.
Upper school Grade 6-12
SCIS provides support within the school day to students for whom English is not the dominant language. Special EAL class time is provided. At the beginning levels, the EAL program concentrates on equipping students with the vocabulary and structures for meeting immediate school needs and assisting in the settling process. As students gain confidence, they move onto broader themes designed to develop speaking, listening, reading, and writing skills to a level that will enable them to participate effectively in all regular classroom lessons including English Language and Literature. Students with limited English proficiency, or transferring from non-English speaking schools, will be assessed to determine the level of EAL support required. EAL classes are required for any student whose oral and written language is not sufficient to function satisfactorily in academic subjects. This may include both MYP English Language Acquisition classes and EAL Resource classes.