The Student Resource Department helps provide support for students who are learning English as a Second Language and students with special learning needs. Though students learn at different rates and in different ways, each student has intrinsic value and will have equal access to the curriculum in a caring and supportive environment. The department strives to consider the individual needs and learning style of each student while realizing that learning is an ongoing process. The school supports the training of staff members in the teaching of English to students of other languages, the theory of second language acquisition, and methods for differentiating instruction for students with special needs. Every student is encouraged to be a creative and critical thinker as a member of the school and the global community. Our teachers foster a school environment that values all learners in order to facilitate the academic literacy of the students.
We believe that:
- language is an essential tool for academic success.
- students should be knowledgeable and English language proficient in order to communicate effectively with confidence and fluency.
- students learn best when they have the approval and support of their teachers to gain mastery of material.
- students learn a second language best when they are proficient in their first language and are not required or forced to replace it.
- students learn best when they have their needs in content areas met through involvement in a wide range of instructional strategies that recognize their individual ability levels.
- students learn best when they are motivated to learn and take responsibility for their learning.
- students learn best when they are immersed in an environment of fluent English speakers and are given supportive instruction with the goal of using English effectively in mainstream classes.
Teachers agree to:
- take into account the previous experiences, optimum learning styles, and knowledge base of students as language learners.
- provide students with opportunities to make connections to the variety of cultural backgrounds and languages that are available in their classes.
- provide good models and varied practice with analytical and creative thinking skills for all students.
- encourage students to take an active role in analyzing their own work to identify their strengths and weaknesses to bring about improvement of skills.
- provide a supportive environment for learning language in the mainstream classroom by collaboration with teachers.
- utilize and promote the use of flexible, appropriate and up-to-date methodologies in such a way as to best meet the needs of all students.
Year Course; Grades 7 and 8
This course is designed to help students improve their written expression. It supports what is being done in the regular English classes and focuses on the writing process. Students who need extra work in developing language proficiency can benefit from this small group situation. Students work on basic skills as well as techniques of oral communication.
Study Skills (Elective)
Semester Course; Grades 7 and 8
This course helps students make more productive use of study time. It teaches students how to study focusing on the material being taught in the regular science, English, and social studies classes. The students receive individual instruction as to how to use the resource materials in the library. The class is limited to 12 students to better enable the teacher to address individual needs. There is an emphasis on cooperative learning wherein students share their strengths and help each other.
ESL Content Support
Year or Semester Course; Grades 7 and 8
This class is designed to reinforce language acquisition for students for whom English is not their first language. It also aims to support their learning in content area classes in order to successfully master mainstream disciplines. Preview and review techniques are used to deepen students' knowledge. Students will develop their English communicative skills, learn to express ideas clearly in both written and spoken academic language, improve interpersonal communication skills and subject area related vocabulary and comprehension.
Semester Course; Grades 7 and 8
In order to recognize individual needs and deepen students' comprehension and motivation, this course assists students by providing content area review techniques. Strong team relationships will be built while strengthening mainstream learning processes. Students will be supported in a holistic manner, emotionally, socially, and educationally, in order to help achieve success in school.
After School Study Room
3:20 pm – 4:10 pm, daily throughout the school year
This daily opportunity is open to all students. Middle school faculty members will provide help and supervision for students wishing to do their homework at school.
7:30 am to 4:30 pm
The secondary school library is open daily for middle and high school student use.