English Learners

The Orono Schools support students with diverse needs in cross-cultural settings and serve the oral language and linguistic needs of ELL students. There are approximately 40 students K-12 served in the Orono Schools. Students receive 30-45 minutes of ELL service every day through pull out instruction.  Both the WAPT and ACCESS are used to test English language acquisition. Scores are given on a scale of 1-6 indicating their proficiency level. Most of our students are intermediate and advanced proficiency and in need of exposure to more complex academic language. Materials are selected by the two ELL teachers in the district. The following are critical literacy strategies classroom teachers utilize with English language learners:
  • Selecting texts with content related to students’ background knowledge. 
  • Activating and building background knowledge before reading. 
  • Pre-teaching both content-specific and academic vocabulary. 
  • Using a series of books based on similar themes. 
  • Teaching strategies for solving unknown words. 
  • Selecting texts that will build vocabulary and background knowledge in content areas. 
During the 2012-13 school year, Orono Schools will be training individual classroom teachers on the SIOP Model (Sheltered Instruction Observation Protocol) of lesson preparation and building background and vocabulary for learners. Both content and language acquisition are highlighted in this lesson planning model. Literacy coaches and ELL teachers will assist classroom teachers with identifying resources, materials and implementing instructional practices that are most effective for students with diverse learning needs. Additionally, during the 2013-2014 school year, Orono Schools will send a team to the SIOP training institute to develop a train-the-trainer model for classroom teachers.