That's What I Remember
Last year's group of the criminally under-educated was an anomaly in many ways, as it had relatively little to do with their CELDT level (that's the extent to which they were fluent English speakers, listeners, readers, and writers for all you non-Californians). Most of them were fairly well off -- a lot of 3s, 4s, and 5s. They had the foundation to achieve, but struggled to shut the hell up long enough to realize it. An oasis then, educating that combination of low-CST and high-CELDT.
We're back on familiar sand again, with the weak, weak English speakers. And yeah, there's a fair amount, maybe 10, who were born in foreign lands, but most of them were born in the U.S. and educated in its school system their entire life. Seven years of school and they're still early intermediate. I think immersion works. I think a bilingual program that teaches ESL while building literacy in a primary language works better, but immersion works if done well. It's obviously not being done well. I've got kids who've been in the U.S. 18 months and still cannot name twenty things in the room. Maybe, just maybe, those kids shouldn't be thrown into a heterogeneous classroom environment and left to fend for themselves.
The upshot of all this?
Pair-shares. All day long. Pair-shares and then forced share-outs cuz I got to get em talking. I think I'm averaging 19 pair-shares an hour. I defy you to top that.