Having effective EAL provision in your primary school is becoming increasingly important year on year. As of January 2022, over 987,000 children were recorded as EAL learners in maintained primary schools alone across the UK, meaning that over 21% of primary pupils now have EAL. The number will only continue to grow, given the sharp increase in refugees and asylum seekers such as those from Ukraine. Adding in the huge language loss as a result of Covid-19 disruption to learning, it is now of critical importance for schools to ensure that they are supporting their EAL learners at the highest possible standard. During Covid-19, of teachers who were able to report on the impact on the English language skills of pupils who use EAL, 74% of primary teachers reported observations of language loss in one or more language skill areas.
For many primary school teachers that are new to the profession their training rarely covers EAL teaching, if at all, and the number of primary EAL students rising across the country, it is vital that EAL specialists, support staff and senior leadership join together to learn how to ensure your school knows how best to support EAL pupils allowing them to thrive in school.
This EAL training day will provide attendees with practical guidance on working with primary school pupils with EAL.
- Understand needs of the full range of EAL learners in your primary school
- Acquire new strategies that effectively support new arrivals to settle and begin their EAL journey
- Enhance your understanding how every day English is acquired, to enable you to better encourage and aid EAL learners
- Consider the differences between how classroom and academic English is acquired, informing your teaching practices for primary EAL learners
- Being able to develop a strategy for leading a consistent approach to supporting the learning and growth of EAL pupils across your primary school
*This training will run entirely via an online platform. Specific joining instructions and guidance will be provided to registered delegates.
Note that all of today’s sessions will be interactive, and attendees will have regular opportunities to pose questions to experts, engage in discussions with peers, and leave the day equipped to support the needs of EAL pupils
In this practical session, you will work with our experts and colleagues from across the primary EAL landscape to:
- Explore the interchangeable acronyms for EAL, using the varying definitions to redefine what you understand ‘EAL’ to mean and how this impacts how you teach English to your students
- Discuss how the definition of ‘EAL’ has changed over time, and how this has impacted pupil’s learning journey
- Through group exercise, practically explore the experience of learning another language through the lens of an EAL student, enhancing your understanding of some of the immediate challenges primary learners will face
- Consider the experiences primary EAL students and their families go through as a new arrival, critically analysing the expectations these stakeholders will have, using the ‘if it were my child’ approach as the basis
Using EAL Academy’s EAL Handbook as guidance, this session will focus on supporting new arrivals. Key takeaways will be:
- An improved strategy for identifying ‘different types’ of new arrivals and understanding what their individual needs may be, and how this varies from pupil to pupil
- Guidance on the key components of initial assessment that should characterise a new arrivals experience, based off the information you have gathered about the pupil prior to their arrival in school
- Insight into the essential information you should be gathering about your new arrival in their first few weeks, as well as how to best collect this and what to look out for
- A critical analysis of the role of contextual support can play when supporting primary EAL learners, specifically how to use the knowledge you have gained to provide high-quality tailored support
- Highlight the importance of providing appropriate emotional support for new EAL pupils upon arrival, reflecting on tools such as the buddy system to provide peer-to-peer support, exploring the limitations of this, and looking at how you can guide non-EAL students to support new students in this way
- Placing listening at the centre of new arrivals experience, discuss how to create listening opportunities within your primary school to promote the use and development of survival English, using case studies of best practice as examples
- Critically analyse the nuances of working to support EAL learners at primary school level, considering how some strategies will work better than others depending on age and school culture
- Discuss the advantages of the primary school setting to aid in the learning and understanding of English, linking this to the resources you do have in your schools, as opposed to the ones you don’t, to help EAL students feel more confident
- Highlighting the difference between communicative English and classroom language at primary level, discussing how each will impact student learning and teaching experience, placing it within the context of a learning continuum
- Sharing guidance on how to best support primary EAL students with moving along the continuum to develop more sophisticated linguistic choices within the context of subject matter
- Exploring how long it takes to learn English, providing a clear understanding of the process and experiences learners will experience and the likely timeline for this
- Using best-practice case studies, consider a range of strategies that best support the development of reading and writing skills in English in KS1 and KS2
- Learn the importance of implementing a positive whole school ethos to support EAL learners, focusing on how you achieve this in a primary context
- Using best practice case studies, explore some key techniques and methods that have proven successful for primary schools in engaging all learners with EAL teaching
- Sharing insights how to best use of the first language in EAL learning to provide tailored support for the EAL students within your primary setting
- Explore the how you can effectively use data to enact influence within your setting to more effectively advocate for your EAL learners, considering key things such as; where do you look for data in public domain and in your school, how do you interpret this, and who’s responsibility is it to collect this and how can you help