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Ethnic Minority Achievement
English as an Additional Language - Primary
Working with More Advanced EAL learners at KS1 & KS2

What are the needs of more advanced EAL learners?

  • To continue to develop and enhance their English Language skills

Pupils gain 'basic interpersonal communication skills' (BICS) in up to 2 years - but it takes from 5-7 years to acquire the full range of literacy skills: 'cognitive academic language proficiency' (CALP). Read an explanation of the essential points of BICS and CALP.

The needs of bilingual pupils do not cease once they are proficient in everyday spoken English. They will need continuing support in developing appropriate literacy skills, and in acquiring the language necessary for full cognitive development and access to the National Curriculum.

  • To achieve their full academic potential

High expectations for EAL pupils should be maintained.

  • Maintaining bilingualism & celebrating cultural diversity

Being bilingual is an advantage, and maintaining first language skills is vital for cognitive development. Acknowledging and celebrating pupils' culture and religion is important to them, and enriches the whole school.

How can the school meet the needs of more advanced EAL learners?

  • Maintaining support for post beginner EAL learners

Developing oracy skills are key to progress for EAL pupils: Speaking and listening are essential preparation for writing. Provide writing frames and oral rehearsal in preparation for writing tasks. Pupils may require longer time to complete tasks, in order to process language.

  • Differentiating the curriculum

The Cummins framework provides a useful tool for planning for the inclusion of EAL pupils, through awareness of language and cognitive demands.

  • Bilingualism and celebrating cultural diversity

Recognise, value and promote the linguistic and cultural heritage of pupils uaing dual language materials, celebrations and curriculum studies. For some examples from the EMAS team, see 'Good Practice Case Studies'.

What about SATs?

  • Allowances for EAL pupils in SATs

Concessions for EAL pupils for SATs tests should be checked annually. Some pupils may be entitled to extra time, translation, and the use of bilingual dictionaries except in English tests. However, as these rules may vary, they should be checked for individual cases. EMAS can provide advice to schools.

How can the EMA Team support schools with more advanced EAL learners?

  • Advice to mainstream staff in schools
  • Training and INSET
  • Resources - READS can provide advice to Gloucestershire schools on suitable resources for bilingual learners

For more information, contact:

Kali Rama, Head of EMA Primary Team,

Race Equality and Diversity Service,

Children and Young People's Directorate, Gloucestershire County Council
Matson Lane, Matson, Gloucester, GL4 6DX

Tel: 01452 427261

email: reads@gloucesterhire.gov.uk