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How to Support EAL Families and their Language-Learning

Schools are often looking for ways to support EAL families and their language-learning, because this leads to improvement in their children’s language skills. Turns out, the key words to do so are ‘inclusion‘ and ‘communication‘.

We sat down with some primary and secondary teachers to ask them how they manage to support EAL families and their language-learning. Here is the advice we’ve gathered:

Hold EAL parents’ evenings

During an EAL parents’ evening, schools can share top resources which can help them to learn English. Some schools can even promote their own English classes for parents. Parents’ evenings are also a great opportunity to let parents know how well their children are doing in class.

Promote open ‘library day’

Schools can invite EAL parents to a ‘library day’ for pupils and teach them about classic English literature. This can make EAL parents want to improve their English by reading and will encourage them to inspire their own children to read.

Open library days will help EAL families and their language-learning

Encourage active participation of EAL families in community events

One of the best ways to learn how to speak a language is to interact with people in this language. EAL families will be very grateful if you ask them to participate in community events. This gives them an opportunity to get to know people if they are newly arrived in the UK.

Have a family support worker

A family support worker can help out EAL pupils and their families, helping to create a better environment for them. Whether it is finding English courses for them or helping them out with administrative duties, a family support worker will make the life of EAL families much easier. With more time on their hands, EAL families might feel more compelled to work on their English skills.

Depending on your school’s usual events, you can support EAL families and their language-learning by providing them with resources, teaching them about English literature and by including them in community events. A step further could be to hire a family support worker, who will help them out on a more regular basis!

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We’d like to thank the teachers who attended our EAL Birmingham 2018 conference for sharing their tips with us. Click here to register for the EAL Success Roadshow 2019 for more ideas and strategies to unlock the EAL challenge at your school.

If you have any more ideas, please drop us a note on Twitter at @FlashAcademy_HQ!

Interested in all things EAL? Check out our top 5 tips for supporting parents of newly arrived EAL pupils! If you are looking for free EAL resources for your school, why not visit our resources page?

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