English as a Second Language, Enriched Programs

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Language Repertoire

In the Secondary Cycle One and Cycle Two EESL programs, the Language Repertoire section consists of five elements essential to the development of students’ linguistic competence: functional language, vocabulary, language conventions, language register and audience. This knowledge enables EESL students to communicate more accurately and confidently in English at all times and in a variety of contexts.

At the elementary level, students developed a personal language repertoire that allowed them to participate in all classroom situations in English. At the secondary level, EESL students expand and refine their language repertoire with support from human resources (e.g. teacher, peers) and material resources (e.g. functional language posters for the processes, word banks, grammar references, dictionaries). Throughout the secondary level, they focus on the accuracy of their messages by noticing and correcting their errors. EESL students reflect on the development of their linguistic competence in English when they identify their strengths and weaknesses, consider and integrate feedback, set goals and make the necessary adjustments.

A. Functional Language

In the secondary-level EESL programs, functional language refers to varied fixed expressions (i.e. ready-made utterances) and open-ended prompts (i.e. sentence starters) that are taught and used in context to facilitate oral interaction. Functional language allows EESL students to participate in classroom life, share information, cooperate, use the processes and reflect on learning.

At the elementary level, students learned and experimented with functional language (i.e. useful expressions and vocabulary) through various classroom routines and meaningful communicative tasks that dealt with mostly familiar topics. EESL students begin the secondary level with a solid knowledge of functional language due to an Intensive English course or other enriching English language learning experiences. This explains the predominance of shaded boxes in the chart.

Throughout the secondary level, EESL students add new fixed expressions and open-ended prompts to their personal repertoire of functional language in order to communicate effectively. Secondary Cycle One EESL students use functional language spontaneously and with relative fluency and accuracy in order to carry out tasks that deal with familiar themes (e.g. social networking) and topics of a broader scope (e.g. sustainable development). Secondary Cycle Two EESL students use a wider range of functional language to express fluent, accurate messages that address increasingly complex issues and abstract ideas.

Functional language contributes directly to the development of the competency Interacts orally in English and supports the development of the competencies Reinvests understanding of texts and Writes and produces texts.

Language Repertoire
Student constructs knowledge with teacher guidance.
Student applies knowledge by the end of the school year.
 
Student reinvests knowledge.

E: The letter E shows links between the elementary- and secondary-level ESL programs.

Elementary

Secondary
Cycle
One
Cycle
Two
  1. Functional Language
  1 2 3 4 5
  1. Participating in classroom life
    1. Uses social conventions to:
      • greet (e.g. How are you?)
      • take leave (e.g. See you later!)
      • express courtesy (e.g. You’re more than welcome.)
      • apologize (e.g. Sorry, I didn’t mean to…)
E          
    1. Takes time to figure out what to say and how to say it (e.g. Wait a second.)
E          
    1. Invites others to contribute to exchanges and maintains interaction using rejoinders and connectors (e.g. What about you? I see what you mean, but…)
E          
    1. Gives warnings (e.g. Be careful!)
E          
    1. Asks for and gives/refuses permission (e.g. Do you mind if…? Sure, no problem.)
E          
    1. Gives instructions and participates in classroom routines (e.g.  Write this down. How was your weekend?)
E          
    1. Invites others and accepts/refuses invitations (e.g. Would you like to…? Yes, I’d love to.)
E          
    1. Asks for and offers clarification and responds accordingly (e.g. Could you repeat, please? What does… mean? What I wanted to say is…)
E          
    1. Asks for and offers help/assistance and responds accordingly (e.g. Can you help me with…? Let me give you a hand with…, That’s okay; I can manage on my own.)
E        
    1. Asks for and gives suggestions and responds accordingly (e.g.  Let’s…, Should I…? Sure, that’s a good idea.)
E        
    1. Politely interrupts a conversation (e.g. Before you continue…)
         
    1. Fills in pauses to maintain exchanges using fillers (e.g. I mean…)
         
    1. Uses discourse markers to link ideas (e.g. Then…, Next…)
       
    1. Asks for and offers advice and feedback and responds accordingly (e.g. I think you should…, I can help you with..., I don’t see it that way because…, I see what you mean…)   
     
  1. Sharing information
    1. Expresses capabilities and asks about others’ capabilities (e.g.  I can/can’t…, Do they know how to…?)
E          
    1. Expresses feelings and asks about others’ feelings (e.g. I’m thrilled. How do you feel about…?)
E          
    1. Expresses interests, tastes and preferences and asks about others’ interests, tastes and preferences (e.g. I can’t stand…, What’s your favourite…?)
E          
    1. Agrees/disagrees and asks about others’ agreement/disagreement (e.g.  We don’t agree with..., Do you agree?)
E          
    1. Expresses needs, wants and obligations and asks about others’ needs, wants and obligations (e.g. I need…, What does she want?)
E          
    1. Identifies, describes and asks about people, animals, objects, places (e.g. He is…, It looks…, Who are they?)
E          
    1. Identifies, describes and asks about events, experiences, ideas, issues (e.g. This is about…, It is important because…, What happened next?)
     
    1. Asks information questions (e.g.  Who/What/Where/When/Why/How...? Does he…? Can they…? Are you…?)
E        
    1. States opinions and asks for others’ opinions (e.g. In my opinion…, What do you think?)
E        
    1. Supports opinions and asks others to support their opinions (e.g.  I believe this because…, What are your arguments?)
     
    1. Expresses decision/indecision and asks if others have come to a decision (e.g. I decided that…, Have you made up your mind?)
         
    1. Begins/ends telephone conversations and uses voice mail (e.g.  Hello, I’m calling about…, Please leave a message.)
         
  1. Promoting cooperation
    1. Contributes to teamwork and harmonious exchanges (e.g. We need to agree on this…, I think it would be better if…, I can take care of…, I’ll take notes.)
E        
    1. Shares reflections on team’s work (e.g. Our team has to…, I didn’t follow our plan…, We need to adjust…, Next time we should…)
   
  1. Using the Response Process to construct meaning of texts with others
    1. Shares understanding of the literal meaning of texts when exploring texts with others (e.g. The title means…, What did you notice about this text? Based on the pictures, I think…)
       
    1. Shares understanding of the underlying meaning of texts when exploring texts with others (e.g. What the author is trying to say…, I think the message of the text is…, The title suggests…)
     
    1. Shares personal connections to texts with others (e.g. This happened to me once…, Two years ago, my sister…, Would you react in the same way?)
       
    1. Shares generalizations inspired by issues from texts with others (e.g. Our school would probably…, What could we do about this situation?)
   
  1. Using the Writing and Production Processes
    1. Discusses text components in models of written and media texts before engaging in the processes (e.g. A chart is useful to…, I noticed that this text has…, The table of contents is important for…)
E      
    1. Discusses internal text features (i.e. topic/information, language, text components) and external text features (i.e. purpose, audience, culture) when deconstructing models of written and media texts (e.g. What type of language does the author use? What’s the purpose of this text? The audience for this text is…)
       
    1. Discusses ideas when planning written and media texts (e.g. We need to do some research on this. What media should we use? I have some ideas about…)
       
    1. Discusses feedback when revising and editing written and media texts (e.g. This paragraph is unclear; maybe you can…, Are you sure of the spelling of this word? Let’s add…)
     
  1. Reflecting on own development as an English language learner
    1. Shares reflections about own development as communicator (e.g. I contribute to discussions. I need to improve my pronunciation. This expression is useful when…)
   
    1. Shares reflections about own development as listener/reader/viewer (e.g.  When I read texts, I should…, This text was difficult because…, It’s much easier to watch a video in English than…)    
   
    1. Shares reflections about own development as writer/producer (e.g.  It was difficult to work in a team…, My writing has improved because…, I’m good at…)
   
    1. Shares personal short- and long-term learning goals (e.g. I would like to…, By the end of the term, I hope to…, I will text my friends in English.)
       

B. Vocabulary

In the secondary-level EESL programs, vocabulary is acquired in context. Teachers target words and expressions that EESL students need to participate in classroom life and to carry out meaningful learning and evaluation situations. EESL students learn and experiment with vocabulary when dealing with issues inspired by the broad areas of learning and developing the cross-curricular competencies. They also use vocabulary related to strategies, processes, language conventions and texts.

At the elementary level, students developed a repertoire of vocabulary related to their immediate environment and needed to carry out tasks. Throughout the secondary level, EESL students continue to acquire and use a richer, more precise vocabulary which enables them to communicate effectively.

In Secondary Cycle One, EESL students increase their vocabulary when carrying out tasks that deal with familiar themes (e.g. friendship) and topics of a broader scope (e.g. child labour). In Secondary Cycle Two, EESL students refine their vocabulary as they explore increasingly complex issues (e.g. human rights).

Vocabulary contributes to the development of the three ESL competencies: Interacts orally in English, Reinvests understanding of texts and Writes and produces texts.

Language Repertoire
Student constructs knowledge with teacher guidance.
Student applies knowledge by the end of the school year.
 
Student reinvests knowledge.

E: The letter E shows links between the elementary- and secondary-level ESL programs.

Elementary

Secondary
Cycle
One
Cycle
Two
  1. 1 - Vocabulary
  1 2 3 4 5
    1. Uses targeted vocabulary related to the immediate environment (e.g. nine-day schedule, after-school activities)
E          
    1. Uses targeted vocabulary related to students’ interests and needs (e.g. text messaging, relationships)
E        
    1. Uses targeted vocabulary related to issues inspired by the broad areas of learning:
      • Health and Well-Being (e.g. hygiene)
      • Personal and Career Planning (Cycle 1) / Career Planning and Entrepreneurship (Cycle 2) (e.g. occupations)
      • Environmental Awareness and Consumer Rights and Responsibilities (e.g. pollution)
      • Media Literacy (e.g. copyrights)
      • Citizenship and Community Life (e.g. democracy)
E
    1. Uses targeted vocabulary related to the development of the cross-curricular competencies:
      • Uses information (e.g. source)  
      • Solves problems (e.g. solution)
      • Exercises critical judgment (e.g. viewpoints)
      • Uses creativity (e.g. trial and error)
      • Adopts effective work methods (e.g. process)
      • Uses information and communications technologies (e.g.  networks)
      • Achieves his/her potential (e.g. autonomy)
      • Cooperates with others (e.g. teammates)
      • Communicates appropriately (e.g. audience)
E
    1. Uses targeted vocabulary related to communication and learning strategies (e.g. skim: quick read)
E    
    1. Uses targeted vocabulary related to the response, writing and production processes (e.g. response process: exploring, connecting, generalizing)
       
    1. Uses targeted vocabulary related to language conventions (i.e. intonation, pronunciation and grammar) (e.g. talk: silent letter ‘l’)
E      
    1. Uses targeted vocabulary related to texts (e.g. text type: popular; text component: subtitle; text feature: topic)
E  
  1. 2 - Reflecting on Vocabulary
  1 2 3 4 5
    1. Uses various means to reflect on acquisition and use of targeted vocabulary (e.g. self-evaluation tools, class discussions, peer feedback)
   

C. Language Conventions

In the secondary-level EESL programs, language conventions refer to intonation, pronunciation and grammar. Intonation is the rise and fall of voice pitch to convey meaning and the stress applied to specific syllables within individual words. Pronunciation is the production of phonemes (i.e. sounds) in English words. Grammar is divided into two categories: grammatical structures and mechanics. Grammatical structures include parts of speech (e.g. verbs, conjunctions, prepositions), sentence constructions (e.g. affirmative, negative, simple, complex), word forms (e.g. prefixes, suffixes, gerunds) and agreement (e.g. subject-verb, pronoun-antecedent). Mechanics refers to capitalization, punctuation and spelling.

Knowledge of language conventions helps develop students’ communicative competence by enabling them to better understand oral and written messages and to express their own messages more accurately. At the elementary level, students acquired some knowledge of English language conventions. Throughout the secondary level, they build on this knowledge when carrying out meaningful tasks with the support of resources (e.g. peers, grammar references, verb lists). EESL students make a conscious effort to use accurate language conventions in order to communicate effectively in a variety of contexts.

The secondary-level EESL programs are based on the communicative approach in which language conventions are addressed using focus on form instruction. Focus on form instruction draws students’ attention, in context, to the intonation, pronunciation and grammar of the English language through the following three dimensions: form (e.g. –ed ending for the simple past of regular verbs), meaning (e.g.  a completed action at a specific time in the past) and use (e.g. Last year, I visited New York City.) In focus on form instruction, students benefit from reactive feedback, proactive teaching and noticing form. Reactive feedback is used to direct students’ attention to their errors and is provided through corrective feedback techniques (i.e. elicitation, clarification requests, metalinguistic feedback and repetition). Proactive teaching is when teachers anticipate students’ difficulties and plan the teaching of language conventions essential for carrying out tasks. Noticing form allows students to better understand how the use of a form contributes to the meaning of a message.

Since language conventions are not necessarily acquired in a linear manner, there is no predetermined order in which they are presented. Some language conventions may require continued emphasis as they are difficult to acquire but are necessary for effective communication (e.g. possessive determiners his/her). Consequently, repeated exposure to language conventions in a variety of meaningful contexts is crucial to the development of students’ linguistic knowledge. When targeting language conventions and deciding how much attention to give them, it is important to consider the following:

  1. Complexity: Are students ready to learn the targeted language conventions, given students’ level of language development?
  2. Frequency: Will students have sufficient opportunities to encounter and use the targeted language conventions in the task at hand?
  3. Recurrence: Are the targeted language conventions useful for students’ communication needs?

Language conventions contribute to the development of the three ESL competencies: Interacts orally in English, Reinvests understanding of texts and Writes and produces texts.

Language Repertoire
Student constructs knowledge with teacher guidance.
Student applies knowledge by the end of the school year.
 
Student reinvests knowledge.

E: The letter E shows links between the elementary- and secondary-level ESL programs.

Elementary

Secondary
Cycle
One
Cycle
Two
  1. 1 - Language Conventions
  1 2 3 4 5
  1. Intonation and pronunciation
    1. Uses rising and falling voice pitch to convey meaning (e.g.  rising voice pitch to express surprise: It’s snowing?_)
E        
    1. Uses appropriate stress and pronunciation for words frequently used to participate in classroom life (e.g. Wednesday: \'wenz-day\)
E        
    1. Uses appropriate stress and pronunciation for targeted words to carry out tasks (e.g. government: \'go-vern-ment\)
 
  1. Grammar
    1. Uses knowledge of targeted mechanics to construct meaning of texts
E      
    1. Uses targeted mechanics to write and produce texts
E      
    1. Uses knowledge of targeted grammatical structures to construct meaning of oral and written messages
E  
    1. Uses targeted grammatical structures to express oral and written messages
E  
  1. 2 - Reflecting on Language Conventions
  1 2 3 4 5
    1. Uses various means to reflect on acquisition and use of targeted language conventions (e.g. self-evaluation tools, class discussions, peer feedback)
   

D. Language Register and Audience

In the secondary-level EESL programs, language register is defined as the type of language used in a particular context depending on the audience, purpose, cultural setting and topic. Throughout the secondary level, EESL students learn about language register primarily by listening to, reading, viewing, writing and producing a variety of texts.

At the elementary level, students explored texts that dealt with different language registers and took into account the intended audience when writing texts. Throughout the secondary level, EESL students experiment with a variety of language registers that range from informal (e.g. slang, colloquialisms, contractions) to formal (e.g.  Standard English, academic writing, polite social conventions) as they become increasingly aware of their audience.

In Secondary Cycle One, EESL students use their knowledge of different language registers to construct the meaning of texts, interact with others, and write and produce their own texts. In Secondary Cycle Two, EESL students are better able to understand a variety of language registers and use the appropriate one depending on the context.

Language register and audience contribute to the development of the three ESL competencies: Interacts orally in English, Reinvests understanding of texts and Writes and produces texts.

Language Repertoire
Student constructs knowledge with teacher guidance.
Student applies knowledge by the end of the school year.
 
Student reinvests knowledge.

E: The letter E shows links between the elementary- and secondary-level ESL programs.

Elementary

Secondary
Cycle
One
Cycle
Two
  1. 1 - Language Register and Audience
  1 2 3 4 5
    1. Uses knowledge of targeted language register and audience to construct meaning when listening to, reading and viewing a variety of texts
       
    1. Uses language register appropriate to audience when interacting with others and writing and producing a variety of texts
     
  1. 2 - Reflecting on Language Register and Audience
  1 2 3 4 5
    1. Uses various means to reflect on targeted language register and audience (e.g. self-evaluation tools, class discussions, peer feedback)
   

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