English as an Additional Language (EAL)
The aim of the EAL programme is to help students gain competence in English so that they may succeed in the academic programme and integrate fully into the social life of the school.
We recognise that it takes time to learn a new language and therefore beginner EAL students must spend a certain amount of time each day in classes designed especially for them. However, we believe that they also benefit from contact with other students in the regular classroom and in the greater school community. At ISL, we aim for an appropriate combination of formal instruction in the language, participation in the regular curriculum, and social interaction outside it.
- To help students learn the basic listening, speaking, reading and writing skills in English
- To encourage students to use these skills
- To provide students with the opportunity to learn language in an active way, building on natural motivation and interests
- To provide language that is meaningful to situations in which students find themselves, and to give them the opportunity and freedom to communicate their own ideas, feelings and experiences
- To help students gain confidence to use their acquired language to socialise with their peers, and in a wider school environment
- To help students widen vocabulary and master both sentence structure and the basic elements of English grammar so that they can more easily understand the texts used in their classes
- To encourage reading, both within and outside the course, in English and their first languages
- To promote a sense of achievement and confidence in students so that they can understand and make themselves understood
- To enable students to self-identify as valued members of an international school community
A daily EAL Support lesson is offered to all EAL students providing extra assistance in mastering the vocabulary and concepts being taught in core subjects. The EAL teachers also provide some in-class support in the core subjects.
EAL students are tested in May to measure their language progress. The results of this test, supported by teacher recommendations, will determine if the student is ready to transition to the mainstream English programme in the following academic year. Students may transition during the course of the year upon recommendation for earlier testing by the EAL teacher.
The Lower School has a large proportion of students who are learning English as an additional language. We support all children as they learn English and face the challenges of integrating academically and socially into the school community. The Lower School EAL teachers provide language instruction for students in small classes designed especially for English Language Learners. They also provide support in mainstream classrooms and collaborate closely with classroom teachers.
A variety of teaching methods are used in order to accommodate different learning styles, to promote positive self-concepts, encourage cooperation, and to develop an awareness of thinking processes, critical thinking and decision-making skills, which are integral to language acquisition.
The entire faculty, in collaboration with the EAL teachers, promotes understanding and acceptance of cultural differences. Students are encouraged to maintain and develop their native language and culture, enhancing both cognitive growth and second language development.