English as an Additional Language (EAL)
ASP is proud to serve a large population of students from different national, cultural, and linguistic backgrounds, and we strive to respect, value, and celebrate our diversity.
While the language of communication and instruction at ASP is primarily in English, many of our students come from a variety of linguistic backgrounds. For the numerous students who are developing English language proficiency, we offer a comprehensive “English as an Additional Language” (EAL) program for students in grades 1 through 8.
It is through this program that many non-native English speakers acquire the level of English needed to communicate effectively and successfully in social and academic situations.
EAL Program Statement of Purpose
To support successful English language learning in academic, social and extracurricular settings while valuing home culture and native language development.*
Adapted from Rojas, (2007)
We believe that:
- Language acquisition is a complex and life-long process
- Language learners acquire language at different rates and with different learning styles.
- Students acquire language through meaningful and relevant interaction.
- Students acquire language more quickly through immersion, and should be integrated into the classroom as soon as possible.
- Language learners usually acquire social English in 3-5 years and academic English in 5-7 years according to the research.
- EAL students should be provided with the language support necessary to facilitate their success.
- First language proficiency supports new language development; it is therefore important that students continue to study their mother-tongue language.
- The level of a person's English language proficiency is not a measure of intelligence, nor is it an indicator of what he or she knows.
- Like all students, EAL students should be encouraged to take risks and be given opportunities to realize their full potential. A high-level of self-esteem can only enhance language acquisition.
- EAL students and their families are valued members of our school community. *Adapted from Rojas, (2006)
New students whose mother-tongue is other than English are assessed by the EAL team to determine their English language proficiency in listening, speaking, reading, and writing. The results of these assessments determine students’ placement within or out of the EAL program.
Students may progress to a higher-level EAL class (or exit the program entirely) at any time during the school year, depending on the level of proficiency they achieve in relationship to the EAL standards and benchmarks.
Students participate in a graduated, supportive immersion program supported by the whole school and community approach to learning. This means EAL students attend mainstream classes and receive specific English support both within and outside the mainstream classes based on individual needs and proficiency levels. As a student gains more mastery in English, as demonstrated in classroom achievement, he or she becomes more independent of EAL support services.
To complete a balanced academic life and add to the socialization process, students of English are encouraged and often play on one of the many sports teams and take part in other extra-curricular activities offered throughout the year at ASP.
The program’s faculty consists of trained professionals committed to creating a humanistic environment in which each student can feel secure to meet all the challenges of the ASP academic and social life. In addition to knowing each of our students very well, English language support instructors are always in close contact with classroom teachers and administrators to ensure that there is a clear understanding of each of the EAL student's needs, progress, and classroom placement. This information is regularly and systematically communicated to the parents who help both at home and at the school with their child’s language development. As a community, we strive to create the best possible language-learning environment for your child to succeed at ASP and beyond.