The Problems ESOL Teachers Face, Essay Example
The current learning and teaching era stresses globalization; thus, elementary educators must adopt and incorporate multiculturalism and diversity in their learning plans. It is because adoption and incorporation are two primary elements of globalization. May educators in developed and developing nations such as the United States, Canada, and Africa have already introduced ESOL programs to take globalization to a greater level. It ensures new generation instructors serve as international citizens who understand the universal system and provide a globally based education. However, in delivering ESL services to elementary school students, educators face multiple challenges that hinder quality service. Therefore, the study aims to use a qualitative design by employing a questionnaire to assess the challenges faced by ESL teachers in Virginia.
The research question will be; what is the main problem that limits ESOL learning?
The null hypothesis will be; language barriers and limited time for learning cause 70 % of the problems in ESOL learning and teaching.
Language difference in the United States learning institution structure has developed into an issue of heated arguments over the past many years. Instructors and administrators support many learning practices, such as teaching limited English proficient students in their first language and strict involvement without support (Menken & Sánchez, 2019). While policy-making institutions tend to solve the challenge, the development of non-English speaking populations increases gradually. The United States has about 48 million individuals who do not speak English at home, while there are another 23 million people who speak English, although less proficiently (Olds, 2021). Since a significant population of the United States and most educators are monolingual, language diversity in the learning environment often presents a considerable challenge. The countless studies, theories, and opinion-driven literature for educators tend to be complex and overwhelming. Thus, the language minority students in the United States education system are often misunderstood, demined, and ignored.
According to the United Nations Education, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), about 40% of students globally lack access to education in their familiar language, thus posing a problem in the classroom (Tursunovich, 2022). The language barrier and limited time prevent teachers from teaching linguistically diverse students in the United States and worldwide. On the other hand, students cannot receive quality learning and thus are most likely to feel discriminated against due to the inability to socialize and create relationships with their peers. ESOL programs are therefore designed to break the language barrier in learning. The many programs offered can increase success. Immigrants who participate in the program have been reported to incorporate better into their environments and feel more included by those around them.
The view of linguistic educators on language and language learning primarily shapes their daily teaching practice. Conventionally in other classrooms, students are expected to embrace the words of their instructors without questioning the texts produced for them. In other words, the students’ responsibility has been passively receiving ideas (Menken & Sánchez, 2019). However, current educators are increasingly confident that students should engage in active participation through interactive linguistic learning of assignments and being autonomous students for effective learning. The turn of events has created a new strategy for teaching and learning under the social constructivism theory.
The theory offers a psych language insight into nurturing effective learning through interactive educational activities. It stresses that effective learning requires a sociocultural context; thus, students are active builders of their learning backgrounds. As a result, people should learn not to discriminate against people since they are active community members (Olds, 2021). The theory asserts that the environment and time of the activity determine what is learnt and how sense is made of knowledge. In this context, the activity includes learning. Therefore, language barriers hinder a person’s learning process in their social environment.
According to Vigotsky, dialogue facilitates effective learning (Tursunovich, 2022). Initially, the dialogue occurs between the learner and the teacher, between students, and between the transcript and the speaker. Nevertheless, the student understands what the instructor says or writes through internal conversation. Therefore, learning is interactive because students need to interact with the knowledge in their environment by rebuilding ideas within their understanding. The theory states that the purpose of inspiration determines learning. Students choose to concentrate on learning, and how they learn is shaped by the social significance of the learning activity put forth by the instructor (Menken & Sánchez, 2019). For instance, students gain insight differently if they are getting ready for an exam on alphabetical letters or reading an article from a magazine or publication about their favorite movie. Educators can be significant in enabling a learning environment with varying learning significances. However, the most crucial factor is how the students perceive the learning activity. For instance, are the students learning the alphabet letters to pass their upcoming exam, or are they trying to learn the language for effective communication in their environment and other places?
From the point of view of a social constructivist, reading during learning and teaching is a social activity. It shapes when one reads, what they are reading, the place of reading, what one reads with, and why and how they are reading. Text interaction can include reading guidelines, scanning a magazine, or going through an academic publication. Thus, when the ESOL curriculum is being developed, the panelists consider the needs of the students in terms of social activities. Tursunovich (2021) interprets four diverse reader resources. These include breaking a code, making meaning, using text, and analyzing the text. Code breaking is the essential resource that decodes a text as a letter, a word, or a sentence. For most students, deciphering a text and reading are similar elements since they are social activities taught in their learning institutions. Code-breaking activities include top-down and bottom-up approaches, which are usually of significant concern in reading lessons. The strategies help build the students’ reading proficiency (Olds, 2021). Nevertheless, suppose students are demotivated by limited class time and language barriers. In that case, they develop reading cultures focused on deciphering texts to the disadvantage of the other three reading resources.
When teaching English as a second or other language, a standard classroom practice involves the students reading aloud. While it aims at supporting code breaking, it has very little to do with defining a text and other things to do with deciphering the sound-symbol connection. Thus, many students in the ESOL program may ignore the bigger picture, including breaking the text’s general meaning. Indeed, there is more to reading than deciphering text in the classroom. Olds (2021) points out that making meaning out of a text is another essential resource in reading since it involves dialogue. It is inadequate for a student to hear or visualize words in writing. They have to listen and try making some logic internally concerning what another writer communicates, an aspect that involves dialogue according to the social constructivism theory.
Reading English for an international student whose native language is not English is particularly challenging since the grammatical composition, words, text structures, and other environmental aspects are unfamiliar. Indeed, there can be no appropriate and effective way of understanding most of these words (Menken & Sánchez, 2019). Every learner must know that any other reader builds meaning from their readings differently, depending on their main reason for reading, origin, and mental state. There is no apparent meaning in a lesson; therefore, reading involves building sense from the read text using an internal and intramental conversation with the text.
The Meaning of Social Constructivism Theory for English for Speakers of Other Languages
Social constructivism theory state that educators should not teach reading by solely practicing reading. They should concentrate on helping foreign students extend their ability to read constructively. The theory also adds that teachers should stop teaching a lesson using intangible reading resources irrelevant to students or their extended learning reasons (Olds, 2021). Educators, or those specialized in writing textbooks, usually select reading materials to put across a grammatical point instead of engaging students in relevant and purposeful reading activities. Reading without reason makes the reader an observer, a silent stranger instead of a meaning maker. ESOL teachers should also ensure that they do not read in place of students in their learning classes but rather promote an engaging lesson by allowing students to participate.
With a developing population of English linguistic students, both indigenous and immigrants, ESOL and bilingual educators cannot single-handedly achieve the standards of such a mass population. Therefore regular teachers in the learning environment experience challenges while educating students of diverse backgrounds because these students inhibit limited or no skills in the English language, more so at the elementary level (Menken & Sánchez, 2019). Learning obstacles and limited time pose a problem to instructors who speak one language, English in particular. Many instructors cannot adapt to being incorporated into a foreign language and culture. As a result, they face the dilemma of choosing between multiple and limited options to respond to the problem of the limited time of teaching and the language barrier. Teachers may try to overcome the plethora of widely biased literature while seeking support. They may also attempt to introduce their unique techniques to teach students of diverse settings (Old, 2021). Alternatively, they may ignore them, hoping these students hoping that English language students will ultimately adopt the linguistic, tradition, and content of the classroom. While data on teaching ESOL students in the typical classroom is much, there is a lack of coherent and cohesive data on the main problem that limits ESOL teaching and learning.
The study aims to present the existing and future of ESOL instructors and students with actual, straightforward, study-driven approaches for learning elementary students in a language-diverse environment. The study and secondary results will focus on teaching elementary students of ESOL in the regular classroom. Besides, using a thorough literature review and questionnaire as a quantitative design method, the study seeks to determine the main problem that limits ESOL learning at the elementary level in the United States. Therefore, the questionnaire for the study will include a catalog of mimeo-structured or printed queries meant for the respondent to express their ideas (Iwaniec, 2019). It is well regarded as the primary way of gathering quantitative data, although it is used to gather quantitative data in some cases. Questionnaires will facilitate quantitative data collection in standardized ways such that the data collected will be consistent and clear to facilitate analysis (Ishtiaq, 2019).
Moreover, a questionnaire has always had a definite purpose concerning any study’s objectives. Therefore, a questionnaire will need to be very clear in the context of how the research results are applied. A questionnaire is used in cases of limited resources because it is cost-effective in designing and administering. Moreover, it consumes a limited amount of time, protecting participant data’s confidentiality from unauthorized access (Damian et al., 2017). The study results are focused on informing future approaches to dealing with the central problem in teaching ESOL students at the elementary level.
The proposed study will help the furtherance of the Kingdom of God since it encourages helping each other. ESOL teachers ensure that each student understands by fully equipping them with the necessary knowledge and materials. From the Bible, Jesus on Helping Others. “My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you; Give to the one who asks you, and does not turn away from the one who wants to borrow from you.” The investigation inspires helping each other, which is advantageous to God’s kingdom.
ESOL teachers experience significant problems that affect their ability to provide quality education to students. Several studies have reported several challenges, including but not limited to limited time, inadequate resources, and a language barrier. Cultural integration of students from diverse environments can be challenging for ESOL educators. It includes interpreting the native language to the English language or behavior. The educators also experience limited time in teaching ESOL students (Menken & Sánchez, 2019). This is due to the conventional time allocated for an ESOL lesson which may make it impossible to cover the resources or have a whole dialogue with the students. As a result, students do not receive the equal attention required for the ESOL program. Moreover, in the expert field, there are most likely limited resources for ESOL teachers. It implies that educators may have inadequate curriculum resources and equipment to assist ESOL students, negatively affecting the learning process and resulting in demotivated students (Menken & Sánchez, 2019). The proposed study, therefore, aims to study the challenges ESOL instructors face in delivering their service.
RQ1: what is the main problem that limits ESOL learning?
H1: 70 % of the problems in ESOL learning and teaching are caused by language barriers and limited time for learning.
English for Speakers of other languages (ESOL)-Regardless of one’s residence, if English is not their first language, but they start learning English, they qualify as ESOL students.
Disman, D., Ali, M., & Barliana, M. S. (2017). Using quantitative research method and statistical data analysis in dissertation: an evaluation study. International Journal of Education, 10(1), 46-52. https://www.learntechlib.org/p/208961/article_208961.pdf
Ishtiaq, M. (2019). Book Review Creswell, JW (2014). Research Design: Qualitative, Quantitative, and Mixed Methods Approaches. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage. English Language Teaching, 12(5), 40. https://www.academia.edu/download/72214301/Ishtiaq_2019.pdf
Iwaniec, J. (2019). Questionnaires: Implications for effective implementation. In The Routledge handbook of research methods in applied linguistics (pp. 324-335). Routledge.
Menken, K., & Sánchez, M. T. (2019). Translanguaging in English‐only schools: From pedagogy to stance in disrupting monolingual policies and practices. Tesol Quarterly, 53(3), 741-767. https://www.academia.edu/download/79935908/menken-sc3a1nchez-tesol-quarterly-2019.pdf
Olds, J., McCraney, M., Panesar-Aguilar, S., & Cale, C. (2021). Adopting Instructional Strategies for English Language Students in Elementary Classrooms. World Journal of Education, 11(3), 18-29. https://files.eric.ed.gov/fulltext/EJ1308586.pdf
Tursunovich, R. I. (2022). Teaching a Foreign Language and Developing Language Competence. Web of Scholars: Multidimensional Research Journal, 1(8), 8-11. https://www.innosci.org/wos/article/download/559/489
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