Language Support Activity Units
The post-primary Activity Units presented here for download or printing are firmly embedded in the school context and accurately reflect the language and learning requirements for access to the Junior and Leaving Certificate curricula.
The ELSP (part of the Trinity Immigration Initiative, Trinity College Dublin) is based on a three-year corpus linguistics analysis of the subject textbooks and examination papers used in Irish post-primary schools. This analysis has been further extended by investigating official teacher guidelines and subject syllabi in addition to extensive consultation both with support teachers and mainstream subject teachers.
The analysis of the linguistic demands of a large number of subjects in the post-primary curriculum has provided much valuable information about the terminology, keywords and language structures necessary to pursue effective study of different subjects. The information has been used to create a collection of subject-specific teaching/learning materials. These materials are designed to support teaching and learning at a developing level of proficiency in the language of different subjects, culminating in the Leaving Certificate examination. As students become increasingly able to penetrate and access textbooks and classroom activities, so their control grows in relation to their own learning. The Activity Units of the ELSP are designed to help students achieve that penetration and access so that the learning challenge changes and they are empowered to build new knowledge on that which is already clear, comprehensible, and familiar to them in
The concept of successfully integrating ESL (English as a Second Language) learners into the mainstream post-primary curriculum is multi-dimensional, involving the successful integration of linguistic, educational and social practices. Within the post-primary context, the successful teaching of curricular lexis derived from subject textbooks and examination papers plays an important role in this integration as it informs the language of instruction and language of communication within the classroom.
The Activity Units are supplemented with a wide range of appropriate language learning and self-study activities which are suitable for post-primary students to do individually, in pairs or in small groups.
The goal of a successful post-primary ESL approach is to provide newcomer students with equitable opportunities to achieve designated learning outcomes across the curriculum. We believe that our corpus and materials will play a fundamental role in the facilitation of this provision and in the development of skills in which the learner can manage their own lexical learning (Harwood 2005, Sanaoui 1995).
For more information click on Background to the Units
Harwood, N. (2005) What do we want EAP teaching materials for? Journal of English for Academic Purposes 4: 149-161.
Sanaoui, R. (1995) Adult learners’ approaches to learning vocabulary in second languages. The Modern Language Journal 79.1: 15–28.