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Beyond Basics: ESOL Beginning Literacy

6 weeks | 24 hours

This course is an in-depth follow up to our popular ESOL Basics course. Teaching adult English language learners who struggle with reading and writing—perhaps because they never went to school in their home country and are not literate in their native language—may seem like an intimidating prospect. It is true that it’s not always easy. However, as anyone who has taught such a group of students knows, working with literacy learners is also very rewarding.

Beyond Basics: ESOL Beginning Literacy will give you the tools you need to work with literacy learners. We’ve culled the latest research to familiarize you with what literacy learners bring to the classroom, provide the best approaches for working with these students, and help you better prepare for your classroom time. Participants will share activities and lessons with each other and receive feedback. In the end, you will have a repository of strategies, activities, and lesson plans to use with beginning literacy English language learners.

Through the online course format, you can learn at your own pace from the comfort and convenience of your own home or office. Facilitators, available to help you throughout the six-week course, lead you through the content and technical aspects of the course.

Each week’s lesson addresses a different aspect of teaching beginning literacy. Course activities include readings, videos, assignments, and discussions. Throughout the course, you will have a chance to reflect on and discuss important weekly topics with your peers and share ideas and experiences through the discussion board. Assignments put your new knowledge to work, allowing you to make your ideas concrete and apply them to your particular classroom. The lessons are developmental and sequential.

Lessons and resources included in the course:

  • Understanding Literacy Learners and the Literacy Classroom
  • Print Awareness, Sound/Symbol Correspondence & Emergent Readers
  • Orality & Literacy & Standards Alignment
  • Multilevel and Balanced Instruction Strategies
  • Assessment and Technology
  • Preparing for the Literacy Classroom

Completion of the course is designed to require a minimum of 24 hours of your time, approximately four hours a week. However, you may find that you want to spend longer with some topics.

In order to receive the certificate for participating in the Beyond Basics: ESOL Beginning Literacy training, you must complete all assignments, respond to each discussion question, and respond at least once to one of your classmates in any of the week’s discussion/assignment forums.

Remember that, although you will gain from doing the activities, you will learn most from discussions with your online colleagues and facilitator. To keep our discussions as productive as possible, you must stay within the timeframe outlined for this course.

Preview the course syllabus.

Course fee: $125 (Virginia grant-funded programs: $0)