English as an Additional Language/Dialect students are those whose first language is a language or dialect other than English and who require additional support to assist them to develop proficiency in Standard Australian English (SAE). EAL/D students come from diverse, multilingual backgrounds.
St Joseph's School, acknowledges, values and builds on the diverse cultural and linguistic backgrounds of students, through sharing and celebrating cultural activities and events. All staff are involved in teaching EAL/D students in mainstream classrooms. If an EAL/D specialist teacher is available, they support staff in programming for the needs of EAL/D students. Through the support of the Catholic Education Office, interpreters are provided for parent/teacher interviews when needed. The newsletter is translated in Vietnamese.
At St Joseph's School, we believe that EAL/D students learn English best when students are actively engaged in a range of authentic learning experiences.
Some of these teaching and learning strategies include:
- team teaching, parallel teaching, in-class small group support and withdrawal (by EAL/D teacher)
- acknowledging, valuing and building upon individual needs, experiences and skills
- enabling students to construct their own understandings built from their prior knowledge
- explicit teaching of English grammar and genre
- multiple opportunities to develop oral language skills
- provide buddy networks between older and younger students who speak the same first language
- identifying the links that exist between their first language, English, other Learning Areas and the student's own lives
- integrating a range of visual resources and ICTs to enhance their knowledge and understanding of English