Knowing the learner: What do New Zealand secondary mainstream teachers know about their English language learners, and why does it matter?

Edwards, Susan (2012) Knowing the learner: What do New Zealand secondary mainstream teachers know about their English language learners, and why does it matter? New Zealand Journal of Teachers' Work, 9 (2). pp. 107-118. ISSN 1176-6662

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Abstract or Summary

Recent New Zealand Ministry of Education publications regarding the teaching of English language learners (ELLs) have made it clear that mainstream subject teachers in secondary schools are expected to play an increasingly important role in the English language learning of ELLs, rather than this being the concern of specialist English language teachers. The first step for mainstream teachers is to obtain information about their ELLs, and a number of resources have been provided for teachers to use. This paper reports on the results of a survey of the knowledge that secondary mainstream teachers have of their ELLs’ background and their level of English proficiency. The findings showed that secondary mainstream teachers’ knowledge of their ELLs varies, but nearly all of the teachers perceived that knowledge of their ELLs is important, and they reported that they would like to know more. The research has implications for secondary mainstream teachers in general, and for those who train or provide professional development for secondary mainstream teachers.

Item Type:Journal article
Keywords that describe the item:English Language Learners, ELLs, Secondary, Mainstream, new Zealand
Subjects:L Education > LB Theory and practice of education > LB1603 Secondary Education. High schools
Divisions:Schools > School of Education
ID Code:2524
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Deposited On:26 Mar 2013 03:03
Last Modified:06 Apr 2017 04:48

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