Promising Instructional Practices for English Language Learners
The purpose of this exploratory case study was to understand how teachers, working with English Language Learners (ELLs), expanded their knowledge and instructional practices as they implemented a one-to-one iPad® program.
English Language Learners experience linguistic, cultural, and cognitive shifts that can be challenging, and at times lead to isolation for ELLs. While technology can be engaging, devices alone do not shift instructional practices, nor lead to student learning. Technology must be leveraged through shifts to pedagogical practice and linked thoughtfully to content goals.
This research was conducted through a qualitative case study of educators at an international school.
This study describes promising pedagogical practices for leveraging 1:1 mobile devices for ELLs.
iPads can be a support for ELL students. One-to-one iPads allowed teachers to experiment with new pedagogical approaches, but this development varies greatly between teachers. During the 1:1 implementation there were challenges reported.
In order to mitigate some of these challenges, and build on the success of this study, the researcher suggests developing a common vision for technology integration, using collaborative models of ELL teaching, and investing in professional development.
Researchers should continue to document and observe the learning outcomes of ELL students in 1:1 environments, including an experimental study.
ELLs can benefit from 1:1 technology, and new pedagogical practices. For teachers to implement these new practices conversations on philosophy, engagement with families, and consistent professional development.
Future research can continue to expand the population of ELL students in 1:1 mobile learning environments; and the most powerful pedagogical practices.