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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Southwestern ESL students translate guides for Charleston Marine Life Center

Southwestern Oregon Community College's Fall 2019 English as a Second Language class has partnered with the Charleston Marine Life Center to produce four foreign language translations of the CMLC Visitors Guide. After touring the center with Director Trish Mace, the students were inspired to apply their English skills to translating the original brochures into their first languages of Spanish, Russian, Japanese and Mandarin Chinese.

Caroll Spinney, puppeteer who gave life to Big Bird of 'Sesame Street,' dies at 85

Caroll Spinney, the puppeteer who gave life to Big Bird, the towering yellow avian of TV's "Sesame Street" who accompanied generations of youngsters in the arduous, yet wondrous, work of growing up, died Dec. 8 at his home in Connecticut. He was 85 and died hours before "Sesame Street" received Kennedy Center Honors for achievement in the arts.

A group of black scuba divers has a message for Dunbar students: 'We need you'

Jaquan Greene buckled the scuba vest, adjusted his goggles and stuck the regulator — the device that delivered air from the gas tank strapped to his back — into his mouth. The 16-year-old swam through the shallow end of Dunbar High School’s indoor pool — like a fish, a couple of teachers said. Jaquan's lesson came through Diving With a Purpose, an organization that catalogues artifacts from the sites of slave shipwrecks and has sent hundreds of divers into the ocean to document the centuries-old wreckage. On a recent Friday, Walker and filmmaker Shirikiana Gerima were at the majority-black school in Northwest Washington with a message for its students: "We need you."

How Sesame Street's Muppets Became Revolutionaries

It all started with a big, controversial bet that young kids could actually learn from television. In its inaugural seasons, episodes dedicated to the letter n or the number 5 reflected the zeal of its educational mission and its laser-like focus on pedagogy. But from the moment it was first conceived in a 1967 report presented by its founder, Joan Ganz Cooney, Sesame Street quietly harbored larger ambitions.

As 'Sesame Street' turns 50 and accepts the Kennedy Center Honors, its lessons in niceness are still as easy as 1-2-3

"Sesame Street" can feel deeply personal to just about anyone under the age of 55. It taught us to read and count, but it also taught us about kindness and acceptance. It was jazzy and groovy; it had a loose and wild feeling, even with all that PhD scrutiny on every frame. Today the show is brighter, faster and somehow zippier, set on a cleaner, spiffier Sesame Street (shot on a set in Astoria, Queens) with a community garden and a recycling bin next to Oscar the Grouch's trash can. Hooper's Store serves birdseed smoothies and has bistro seating. Yet the sense of belonging remains. "Sesame Street" was inclusive before anyone really knew what that meant, the first safe space. It is a friend to everyone, which has a lot to do with why it’s the first TV show to receive Kennedy Center Honors.

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