November 2013

November is filled with special celebrations. Take a look at our booklists and ideas on how to bring these celebrations into the classroom!

Type of Newsletter: TELLEGRAM
Date: November, 2013

Dear Subscribers:

November is filled with special celebrations, highlighted throughout our newsletter. Take a look at our booklists and ideas on how to bring these celebrations into the classroom!

In addition, you won't want to miss our updated academic language resource section, filled with videos, articles, professional books, and more. These resources may be particularly useful in conversations around English language learners and the Common Core.

Lastly, we are very grateful for you, our audience. Your suggestions and feedback continue to make us better! All the best to you and yours for the upcoming Thanksgiving holiday.

The Colorín Colorado Team

Don't Miss...

Booklists: American Indian and Alaska Heritage

Don't miss our updated children's and young adult booklists featuring numerous titles written by/about American Indians and Alaska Natives. Books are organized by topic and range from traditional bilingual stories to photo essays about contemporary American Indian families. We hope you'll get creative and look for opportunities to include these books and related classroom resources throughout the year and across the curriculum!

New children's booklists include the following:

New YA booklists include these topics:

For suggestions on selecting other related titles, take a look at Tips for Choosing Culturally Appropriate Books & Resources About Native Americans by Dr. Cathy Gutierrez-Gomez.

American Diabetes Month: The Adventures of Clara

November is American Diabetes Month, and we wanted to let you know about a great new bilingual resource online for kids with diabetes. Mariela Aguilar is a children's librarian and storyteller in Arlington, VA, and the former host of the bilingual video series Cuentos y Más ("Stories and More," available online through the Arlington County Library website).

Based on her own experiences with diabetes, Mariela has launched a blog with kids' stories about a young girl named Clara Guevara who is struggling with her diabetes, whom she has named Glugar. Each story about Clara and Glugar, available in English and Spanish, introduces a new adventure and focuses on a different aspect of living with diabetes from a child's point of view.

New on Colorín Colorado

National Adoption Month: Language and Adoption

November is also National Adoption Month, and we are pleased to announce a new resource section featuring a number of tools for parents and educators of internationally adopted children who may be English language learners. These include tips about language development and adoption for both younger and older children; adoption booklists for kids and teens; and resources for parents and educators about how to approach the topic of adoption in school settings.

Adoption and Language: A Mother's Perspective

Dr. Laurie Weaver is a Professor of Bilingual and Multicultural studies at the University of Houston-Clear Lake. Laurie is also a proud single parent of Marisa, a 9th-grader whom Laurie adopted from Guatemala when Marisa was about six months old. In 2002, Laurie wrote an article for Adoptive Families about Marisa's early language development. We recently interviewed Laurie to learn more about how her daughter is doing today and what advice she has for parent and educators about the language development of internationally adopted children.

Common Core Corner

Planning Professional Development About the Common Core and ELLs

The latest addition to our Common Core and ELLs blog features a two-part series written by Ayanna Cooper and Dr. Diane Staehr Fenner with guidance for ELL educators who are planning Common Core professional development for their colleagues. Each entry offers a range of topics and resources that can be tailored to meet colleagues' needs and schedules in your particular setting.

Common Core and ELLs: New Resources in the Field

A number of new resources about the Common Core and English language learners have been published since our last newsletter. Here's a quick summary, and you can read more about all of these resources on our Common Core and ELLs blog!

Recommended Resources

Mastering Academic Language: A Framework for Supporting Student Achievement

By Debbie Zacarian (Corwin, 2013)

In this groundbreaking guide, Debbie Zacarian, EdD, provides a new perspective on the role of academic language in the engagement and success of all students, including English language learners. She provides an in-depth discussion of the differences between academic language learners (those who enter school with limited academic language) and academic language "carriers" (those who enter school with extensive academic language), as well as each group's strengths.

Using numerous classroom examples, she then outlines a range of strategies for bolstering academic language instruction. These include making content relevant to students' lives, building upon students' previous literacy experiences, and engaging parents around activities that foster academic language development. Zacarian also includes thoughtful reflection questions that can be used in individual, pair, or group settings, along with tools such as graphic organizers and rubrics to guide discussion.

Zacarian, D. (2013). Mastering Academic Language: A Framework for Supporting Student Achievement. Thousand Oaks, CA: Corwin.

New! Academic Language Booklist

For additional titles about academic language, including books that focus on content areas, oral language development, writing, and literacy, take a look at our new academic language booklist!

In the Classroom

New! Academic Language Resource Section

Academic language is a key to school success, yet it can be difficult for struggling students and English language learners to master. This new resource section includes articles, video interviews, and our popular academic language webcast, all of which offer numerous examples and ideas on helping students understand what academic language is and how to incorporate it into their interactions and classroom experiences. We also include new resources focused on role of academic language in the Common Core.

Academic Language: What Teachers Need to Know

This article written by Colorín Colorado Manager Lydia Breiseth helps educators understand the role that academic language plays in their classrooms and in ELL student success. The article also includes information on social vs. academic language, as well as numerous examples of the different kinds of academic language needed for all students to fully participate in classroom activities and assignments. Videos and recommended resources are included.

Parent Resources and Outreach

Reading Tip Sheets for Parents in 11 Languages!

Colorín Colorado offers parent reading tip sheets for grades PreK-3 in 11 languages, as well as tips for babies and toddlers in English and Spanish. Share these at school events, conferences, or in the library!

Books and Authors

Book of the Month: Little You

By Richard Van Camp
Illustrated by Julie Flett

Product Description: Richard Van Camp is a proud member of the Dogrib Nation in the Northwestern Territories of Canada. An internationally renowned storyteller and bestselling author of the hugely successful Welcome Song for Baby: A Lullaby for Newborns, Van Camp has partnered with talented illustrator Julie Flett to create a tender board book for babies and toddlers that honors the child in everyone. With its delightful contemporary illustrations, Little You is perfect to be shared, read, or sung to all the little people in your life!

Thanksgiving Tales

The books on this list offer a wide range of perspectives on Thanksgiving, from stories of immigrants adapting Thanksgiving traditions in their own special way to modern reflections about the things for which we are thankful. Many of the titles are also available in Spanish.

Book Giveaway

Enter a raffle for the following books! To enter, please submit an e-mail with "Book Giveaway" in the subject by December 2, 2013 and indicate your title of choice.

  • Children's Book: Little You by Richard Van Camp
  • Professional Title: Academic Language: A Framework for Supporting Student Achievement by Debbie Zacarian