ELL News Headlines

Throughout the week, Colorín Colorado gathers news headlines related to English language learners from around the country. The ELL Headlines are posted Monday through Friday and are available for free!

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Without Financial Aid, One Teacher Tries to Help Undocumented Seniors

At the start of the New Year, many high school seniors are scrambling to get college applications finished. But for many undocumented students, applying to college is just half the battle. The other half is figuring out how to pay for school, and that can be overwhelming. One Providence teacher is trying to help.

Understanding Vocabulary Through Hand Movements (Video)

At Horning Middle School in Waukesha, Wis., humanities teachers Meredith Sweeny and Shannon Kay introduce the 'Total Physical Response' method to learning vocabulary. This learning strategy is beneficial for students, especially English-language learners, to break down and analyze the roots and endings of vocabulary words by using hand movements and gestures. 

Why Shareholders Are Pushing Apple to Study Smartphone Effects on Kids

Smartphones have changed the way kids live and interact, prompting growing concerns about the consequences. In January, two of Apple's big shareholders called on the maker of the iPhone to come up with ways for parents to restrict their kids' phone use and study the effect that heavy usage has on mental health. John Yang talks to Charles Penner of Jana Partners LLC and Jean Twenge, author of "IGen."

Using Data to Help ELLs Succeed Requires Partnerships, Persistence, Report Argues

Illinois' use of English-language-learner data as an "emerging bright spot" for states looking to better serve and understand the growing, but often misunderstood, student population, according to a report from a Washington-based think tank. In the new report, New America examines how the state's effort to use longitudinal data could serve as a model for other states seeking guidance on how to accurately evaluate the academic growth and needs of their English-language learners. New America also praises Illinois' partnership with the Latino Policy Forum, a Chicago-based advocacy group that advises state on English-learner issues.

University Budgets Suffer After a Drop in International Student Enrollment

After a decade of large-scale growth in overseas enrollment, the number of international students studying at U.S. colleges and universities is dropping — leading some schools to make budget cuts. It's these students who frequently pay full tuition and fees at American schools, netting more revenue per student than from in-state or scholarship students. Admissions officials say one of the reasons for the decline is a more skeptical view of the U.S. from prospective students.

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos Just Gave $33 Million to a Scholarship Fund for 'Dreamers'

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos and his wife, MacKenzie Bezos, have donated $33 million to a scholarship fund for undocumented immigrants who were brought to the U.S. as children — the biggest grant in the organization’s history. "My dad came to the U.S. when he was 16 as part of Operation Pedro Pan," Jeff Bezos said in a statement Friday. "He landed in this country alone and unable to speak English. With a lot of grit and determination – and the help of some remarkable organizations in Delaware – my dad became an outstanding citizen, and he continues to give back to the country that he feels blessed him in so many ways. MacKenzie and I are honored to be able to help today's Dreamers by funding these scholarships."

Chimamanda Adichie: The Danger of a Single Story

Our lives, our cultures, are composed of many overlapping stories. Novelist Chimamanda Adichie tells the story of how she found her authentic cultural voice -- and warns that if we hear only a single story about another person or country, we risk a critical misunderstanding. (Thanks to Teaching Tolerance for reminding us of this video!)

“Love” by Matt de la Peña | SLJ Review

How do we love and care for one another? Award-winning author de la Peña sets out not only to count the ways but also to help young people recognize and take these tender mercies to heart, especially when times are tough and beyond the control of the adults around them.

Sesame Workshop to Address Refugee Children's Trauma with Help from Elmo and $100 Million

The Sesame Workshop and the International Rescue Committee, a refugee aid group, won a first-of-its kind $100 million grant from the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation in late December for an ambitious education and outreach program designed to address the needs of displaced Syrian children. The program was selected for the five-year grant from a list of finalists for the foundation's 100&Change competition, which asked organizations to propose "bold solutions to critical problems of our time."