English Language Learners (ELLs) make up a significant segment of the K-12 student body in the US. In fact, by 2025, an estimated 1 in 4 public school students will be ELLs. Despite their large numbers, the current K-12 system struggles to provide ELLs with an equitable education. One proven solution that supports ELLs’ academic success is high-dosage tutoring (read more about the characteristics of high-dosage tutoring here). Read on to explore the transformative benefits of high-dosage tutoring (or HDT) for ELLs.
The Many Benefits of High-Dosage Tutoring for ELLs
Contrary to the all-too-prevalent deficit-based thinking about English Language Learners’ academic abilities, a multi-year study showed that, while ELLs statistically began the school year behind their English-speaking classmates, they made academic gains at rates comparable to or higher than their peers. These findings highlight the immense potential of English learners to thrive academically when given adequate support and opportunities. High-dosage tutoring is a proven solution to promote academic growth for all types of learners. A 2020 meta-analysis of 96 studies found that high-quality HDT programs consistently improve student achievement across student demographics and needs, making it one of the most agreed-upon learning acceleration solutions available to today’s educators. High-dosage tutoring benefits ELLs in the following unique ways:
- HDT improves language acquisition and fluency. Logically, gaps in English language proficiency lead to gaps in academic achievement when classroom learning occurs in English. With HDT, program managers design 1:1 or small group lessons to quickly fill those gaps. As language improves, access to academic instruction improves and progress accelerates exponentially. To better support ELLs’ language acquisition, consider the following actionable tips:
- Implement a structured and systematic approach to teaching vocabulary, grammar, and language skills.
- Provide ample opportunities for ELLs to practice speaking and listening through conversations, group activities, and language games.
- HDT increases student self-confidence and motivation. High-dosage tutoring can have a profound impact on ELLs’ self-confidence and motivation, leading to improved engagement and a positive attitude towards learning. With a stronger learning stance, students are more resilient, take more risks, are more open to feedback, and believe in their abilities. To build self-confidence and motivation in ELLs, try the following:
- Provide frequent and specific praise and recognition for ELLs’ efforts and achievements.
- Foster a growth mindset by emphasizing the value of perseverance and the belief that intelligence and abilities can be developed through practice and dedication.
- Engage ELLs in goal-setting and monitor their progress, celebrating milestones along the way to boost their motivation and sense of accomplishment.
- HDT allows for culturally relevant instruction. When working with a student one-on-one or in small groups, tutors are better able to tailor instruction to the specific interests, strengths, and cultures of their learners. By understanding and valuing their cultural identities, tutors can create a supportive and inclusive learning environment that enhances engagement, therefore, improving learning outcomes. Incorporating culturally relevant materials, stories, and perspectives into tutoring sessions helps ELLs feel more connected to their education and fosters a sense of belonging. Ensure culturally relevant tutoring instruction with these tips:
- Learn about students’ cultural backgrounds, traditions, and values. This understanding will allow you to make connections between students’ experiences and the content being taught, making it more meaningful for them.
- Incorporate culturally relevant materials and resources like books, videos, articles, and artifacts that represent the diverse cultures and perspectives of your students.
- HDT strengthens students’ social emotional learning and feelings of belonging. With such individualized attention and support, tutors can help students navigate the challenges of learning a new language and adjusting to a new educational environment. Tutors can serve as mentors and trusted individuals who provide guidance, empathy, and encouragement. By building positive relationships with ELLs, tutors can help them overcome barriers, develop self-esteem, and cultivate social and emotional well-being, ultimately leading to improved academic performance and overall success. Try incorporating the following practices into your tutoring strategy:
- Emphasize a safe and inclusive learning environment. Create a welcoming and safe space where ELLs feel comfortable expressing themselves, asking questions, and making mistakes without fear of judgment. Encourage open communication and respect among all students.
- Build positive relationships. Take time to get to know your ELLs on an individual level. Show genuine interests in their lives, listen actively, and be approachable.
- Integrate explicit social-emotional learning into tutoring sessions. Include topics like self-awareness, empathy, and self-regulation to help students identify and manage their emotions, resolve conflicts, and develop effective communication skills.
By leveraging the benefits of high-dosage tutoring, educators can empower ELLs to not only become proficient in the English language, but also excel academically, develop self-confidence and motivation, build self-esteem around their culture, and access the social and emotional support they need to thrive in the classroom and beyond.
Ensuring Equitable Education for ELLs
Securing an equitable education for English Language Learners is of utmost importance in fostering diverse and inclusive communities, both in and outside of school. High-dosage tutoring is a powerful tool in addressing the unique needs of ELL students and ensures they receive the support necessary to thrive academically and linguistically. The data speaks volumes about the disparities ELLs face in educational outcomes. Lower proficiency levels, higher dropout rates, and limited opportunities for higher education and future careers underscore the urgency to bridge these gaps. High-dosage tutoring offers a promising solution to level the playing field and provide ELLs with the resources and guidance they need to succeed.
Brainfuse: The Trusted Tutoring Solution for ELLs
Brainfuse is a nationally-recognized, trusted tutoring provider with a proven track record of effectiveness in multiple ESSA Tier 1 studies. Brainfuse stands out from other tutoring options with:
- Multilingual tutors to ensure equitable support for ELLs
- Mostly US-based tutors with four-year degrees and prior teaching or tutoring experience
- The ability to interact with pencil and paper – our snap-n-send feature allows tutors and students to share handwritten work
- High student engagement through consistent tutoring pairings and frequent student feedback
- Live monitoring – real-time monitors or Program Success Managers review sessions for completeness and pedagogical effectiveness
- Culturally responsive instructors focused on inclusivity and equity for students
- Intentional tutor-student matching using specific algorithms that support student success
- Ease of accessibility for students with disabilities or English Language Learners
- Early identification of struggling students – tutors send schools an instant notifications after each session if they believe a student or session requires additional attention
Ready to learn more? Reach out and let’s ensure academic success for your English Language Learners together!