New survey for identifying English learners

The Maine Department of Education (DOE) has developed a new survey called, Language Use Survey (formerly Home Language Survey) to be used in the identification of English learners. The Language Use Survey is to be administered to the parent/guardian of every student enrolling in a School Administrative Unit (SAU) for the first time and must be included in the SAU’s enrollment packet.

The Language Use Survey is available to download in English and 25 of Maine’s most commonly spoken languages from the Department website. It is also available via TransACT, a service provided through the Maine DOE to give districts access to ESSA-compliant parent notifications in English and other languages.

If you have additional questions regarding the Language Use Survey, please contact April Perkins, ESOL Specialist at april.perkins@maine.gov or office: (207)624-6627 cell: (207) 441-9043.

Creating a discourse community in the world language classroom

For students to have adequate opportunity to acquire language and develop proficiency in a language other than English, maximum use of the target language in the classroom by teachers and students is critical. While the research-based recommendation is that target language use represents 90% of teacher and student discourse in the classroom, many teachers struggle to maximize the use of L2 (world language that the student is working to learn during instruction).

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The why and how of thematic units in the world language classroom

The December 2015 article on the NCSSFL-ACTFL Can-Do statements guided world language educators on using the resource for identifying learning targets relative to proficiency level. This article builds off of that idea, and it looks closer at thematic units in order to understand why and how they best empower educators to teach to language proficiency.

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“Content Corner” launches instructional resources for impactful learning

The Maine DOE introduces the first of three collections of articles for the 2015-16 school year in the “Content Corner,” resources designed to support teaching and learning in Maine classrooms and make connections to classroom applications and research.

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Effectively using the NCSSFL-ACTFL Can-Do Statements in world languages

Research indicates that the identification of clear learning targets is a strong support for language learning. The NCSSFL-ACTFL Can-Do Statements for Language Learning are progress indicators for language learning, and are a valuable resource for teachers and students alike. Based on research that reveals language learners to be more motivated and self-directed when they have an understanding of the proficiency spectrum and language progressions, as well as gaining the ability to self-assess on their language ability, the National Council of State Supervisors for Languages (NCSSFL) and the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) collaborated to develop the national Can-Do statements. These are made up of two parts: the Can-Do Benchmarks and the Can-Do Statements.

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Materials released in advance of Commissioner’s Conference

The following Priority Notice was distributed to school superintendents today in advance of the 104th Annual Commissioner’s Conference for Superintendents:

Dear Superintendents,

We look forward to working with you next week during the 104th Annual Commissioner’s Conference for Superintendents, scheduled to begin at 5 p.m. on Sunday, June 28 at Sunday River’s Jordan Hotel in Newry.

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Input sought for teacher shortage areas

The Maine DOE has been notified of the requirement to submit Maine teacher shortage areas by Dec. 11 for designation by the U.S. Department of Education (U.S. DOE) for the 2015-2016 school year.  The U.S. DOE annually designates teacher shortage areas for purposes of deferment of loan repayments or reductions of teaching obligation under the following student loan programs:  Continue reading “Input sought for teacher shortage areas”