In this post, we’ll explore why it’s important to let your ESL students have a voice in class and offer some tips on how best to do that. Keep reading for more tips and tricks on including English Learners in classroom discussions!
Creating a classroom community where everyone feels respected and valued helps all students feel comfortable participating in class discussions.
Think about how you respond when someone doesn’t answer your question right away. You might give them a nudge, or if they’re taking too long, you might just answer for them. It’s natural to do that—to help students who seem like they’re struggling.
When English language learners don’t immediately jump into a class discussion,
- Do you give them time to think and formulate a response?
- Do not start speaking for them.
Giving your ESL students time to respond is an important part of creating a classroom climate where everyone feels comfortable participating.
Another tip is to pose questions that allow for multiple responses.
For example, instead of asking, “What do you think?” try asking “What are your thoughts on…? or “Can you give me an example?”
Take Time to Listen!
Posing questions in this way will help ensure that all students have an opportunity to share their ideas.
Finally, be patient and take the time to listen to what each student has to say. Thank them for participating, even if their opinion doesn’t align with yours.
If you have English Language Learners in your classroom, it is important to take some extra steps to make sure they feel part of the class and are included in class discussions.
Following the tips above will help make sure all your students feel welcome and comfortable in your classroom.