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Understanding the Features of Academic Language . Everyday Language vs. Academic Language: A “Continuum”. Cognitively undemanding. Context embedded. Context reduced. Cognitively demanding. Jim Cummins, 2000. Everyday Language vs. Academic Language: A “Continuum”. Cognitively undemanding.

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everyday language vs academic language a continuum
Everyday Language vs. Academic Language: A “Continuum”

Cognitively undemanding

Context embedded

Context reduced

Cognitively demanding

Jim Cummins, 2000

everyday language vs academic language a continuum1
Everyday Language vs. Academic Language: A “Continuum”

Cognitively undemanding

Context embedded

Context reduced

Cognitively demanding

Jim Cummins, 2000

everyday language vs academic language a continuum2
Everyday Language vs. Academic Language: A “Continuum”

Cognitively undemanding

Context embedded

Context reduced

Cognitively demanding

Jim Cummins, 2000

everyday language vs academic language a continuum3
Everyday Language vs. Academic Language: A “Continuum”

Cognitively undemanding

Context embedded

Context reduced

Cognitively demanding

Jim Cummins, 2000

everyday language vs academic language a continuum4
Everyday Language vs. Academic Language: A “Continuum”

Cognitively undemanding

Context embedded

Context reduced

Cognitively demanding

Jim Cummins, 2000

features of academic language
Features of Academic Language
  • Content-specific vocabulary: The BIG words

“Pellicle, microtubules, euglenas”

  • Signal words: Transitions, connections, contrasts

However, therefore, on the other hand, in addition, also, moreover

  • Functions or academic process language:

Analyze, compare and contrast, predict, investigate, hypothesize, outline etc.

  • Discourse Patterns:

Varies by discipline: Persuasion, analogies, metaphors, interpretation, finding evidence

edtpa and academic language
EdTPA and Academic Language
  • Definitions that you should study and internalize!
  • Copes for both literacy and math EdTPA
academic texts dense
Academic Texts: Dense

"Shortly after the United States entered World War II, more than 110,000 people of Japanese Ancestry who were living in the United States were forced to move to guarded camps." Elements of Literature: Grade 6, Holt.

academic texts authoritative
Academic Texts: Authoritative

Passive Voice

Statements rather than questions

Use of technical and specialized vocabulary

"Euglenas do not have cell walls, but they do have an intricate cell membrane called a pellicle. The pellicle is folded into ribbon-like ridges, each ridge supported by microtubules. The pellicle is tough and flexible, letting euglenas crawl through mud when there is not enough water for them to swim. Euglenas reproduce asexually by binary fission." High School Biology, Miller & Levine. Prentice Hall

academic texts abstract
Academic Texts: Abstract

Nominalization:

Reproduce - reproduction

EXAMPLE: "Some of the region's physical features and landforms experienced (passive voice) violent forms of creation. Creation (nominalization) was followed by periods of rapid growth." The Pacific Northwest: Past, Present & Future. Lambert

textbooks as certain as death and taxes however textbooks are
Textbooks: As certain as death and taxes! However, textbooks are…
  • Superficial- they cover so much they can't cover in depth
  • Dry!
  • Hard to read - they are reference books
  • Written with the purchasers in mind, more than the students who will use them!
  • Often inaccurate
  • Present as if they are the final word!
  • Visually excessively stimulating with important information located charts, pictures, captions, text, side bars, etc
  • Expensive, which leaves little for other materials, and they have long lives!

Freeman & Freeman, 2009

social studies and academic language tpa
Social Studies and Academic Language: TPA
  • TPA Rubrics expectations:
    • “How does the candidate identify and support language demands associated with a key (literacy) learning task?”
      • Level 3 (Target for CWU): “Candidate identifies vocabulary and additional language demands(s) associated with the language function. Plans include general support for use of vocabulary as well as additional language demand(s).
social studies and academic language tpa1
Social Studies and Academic Language: TPA
  • “How does the candidate analyze students’ use of language to develop content understanding?”
    • Level 3: “Candidate explains and provides evidence of students’ use of language function as well as vocabulary OR additional language demand(s)”
    • Level 4: : “Candidate explains and provides evidence of students’ use of language function as well as vocabulary OR additional language demand(s) in ways that develop content understandings.
what do we do
What do we do?
  • Content AND language objectives for every lesson
  • Activate and/or build background knowledge
  • Provide context embedded instruction for academic content which supports academic language understanding – contextualize as much as possible!
  • Provide explicit content-specific vocabulary instruction utilizing context-embedded strategies: pictures, word-squares
  • Provide explicit academic process instruction with scaffolding
  • Model appropriate use of academic language
everyday language vs academic language a continuum5
Everyday Language vs. Academic Language: A “Continuum”

Cognitively undemanding

Context embedded

Context reduced

Cognitively demanding

Jim Cummins, 2000

identifying and creating sound learning objectives
Identifying and creating sound learning objectives
  • Learning to write appropriate and sound objectives is critical!
writing academic language objectives
Writing Academic Language Objectives
  • Analyze the content objectives
  • Using any of the examples from concept formation lesson on writing objectives, with a partner, write at least one appropriate language objective
try this
Try This!
  • As a table group, plan together a lesson on one of the following unit topics.
  • Write your ideas on the white board.
  • FOCUS ON:
    • Content Objectives
    • Academic Language Objectives ( vocabulary, signal words, process language)
    • Context embedded strategies and supports
unit topcs
Unit Topcs
  • Grade K-1 My Family, Your Family, Our Families
  • Grade 2 Community Helpers and Leaders
  • Grade 3 Coastal and Plains Native Americans: Lifestyle, habitats, homes
  • Grade 4 Hazards of the Oregon Trail
  • Grade 5 Taxes, taxes, taxes! Taxing the tea out of our teapots!!
resources
Resources
  • Freeman & Freeman (2009). Academic Language for English Language Learners and Struggling Readers. New Hampshire: Heineman.