ELL Resource: Colorín Colorado

While walking to the gym recently, I saw an advertisement for the New York City Public Libraries’ Summer Reading 2008 website on an MTA bus. This evening, I finally got around to checking out the site and found it quite useful, in particular the libraries’ list of of “Great Websites for Families“.

On the list is a link to Colorín ColoradoColorín Colorado is a free web-based service that provides information, activities and advice for educators and Spanish-speaking families of English language learners (ELLs).

Take a look at Colorín Colorado’s strategies for teaching ELL students reading (K-12) here. I particularly like the site’s suggested cooperative learning strategies to help students build literacy skills and content area knowledge. For example, have you ever tried having a class tea party or writearound?

  • Tea Party: Students form two concentric circles or two lines facing each other. You ask a question (on any content) and students discuss the answer with the student facing them. After one minute, the outside circle or one line moves to the right so that students have new partners. Then pose a second question for them to discuss. Continue with five or more questions. For a little variation, students can write questions on cards to review for a test through this “Tea Party” method.
  • Writearound: For creative writing or summarization, give a sentence starter (for example: If you give an elephant a cookie, he’s going to ask for…). Ask all students in each team to finish that sentence. Then, they pass their paper to the right, read the one they received, and add a sentence to that one. After a few rounds, four great stories or summaries emerge. Give children time to add a conclusion and/or edit their favorite one to share with the class.

Thanks WETA for sponsoring Colorín Colorado!


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3 Responses to “ELL Resource: Colorín Colorado”

  1. 1 Lydia Breiseth July 9, 2008 at 8:52 am

    Dear Anna,

    Thanks so much for featuring us!! Glad you liked the resources you found!! Feel free to send any ideas for resources you’d like to see in the future.

    Lydia Breiseth
    Colorin Colorado Site Manager

  2. 2 readinggal July 9, 2008 at 3:20 pm

    Will do! Thanks Lydia!

  3. 3 Barbara Benjamin-Trevino October 31, 2008 at 5:32 pm

    Colorin Colorado has a wealth of information and I regularly refer teachers to their site. Be sure to check out the tips sheets for reading to share with parents. They come in various languages and are a big hit with teachers and families. Buena suerte! (Good luck!)

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