English as an Additional Language (EAL)
At Mayplace we are committed to ensuring that all pupils feel safe, accepted and valued in order to learn. For pupils who are learning English as an additional language, this includes recognising and valuing their home language and background. As a school, we are aware that bilingualism is a strength and that EAL pupils have a valuable contribution to make. We take a whole school approach, including ethos, curriculum, and education against racism and promoting language awareness.
Context of the School:
At Mayplace there are currently 47 pupils who are learning English as an additional language, approximately 10% of the whole school population.
Upon admission to the school, information is gathered about:
- Pupils’ linguistic background and competence in other language/s
- Pupils’ previous educational experience
- Pupils’ family and biographical background
A member of staff is nominated to have responsibility for EAL. Currently this is Claire Johnson.
Key Principles of additional language acquisition
As a school, we believe that:
- EAL pupils are entitled to the full National Curriculum programmes of study and all teachers have a responsibility for teaching English as well as other subject content.
- Access to learning requires attention to words and meanings embodied in each curriculum area. Meanings and understanding cannot be assumed but must be made explicit.
- Language is central to our identity. Therefore, the home languages of all pupils and staff should be recognised and valued.
- Pupils will be encouraged to maintain their home language and use it in the school environment wherever possible.
- Although many pupils acquire the ability to communicate on a day to day basis in English quite quickly, the level of language needed for academic study is much deeper and more detailed, and can require continuing support for up to ten years.
- Language develops best when used in purposeful contexts across the curriculum.
- The language demands of learning tasks will be identified and included in planning.
- Teaching and support staff will play a crucial role in modelling uses of language.
- Knowledge and skills developed in learning the first language aid the acquisition of additional languages.
- A clear distinction should be made between EAL and Special Educational Needs. The school recognises that most EAL pupils do not have Special Educational Needs. However, should SEN be identified, EAL pupils will have equal access to the school’s SEN provision.
As a school we will ensure that:
- All EAL pupils are entitled to assessments as required.
- Staff have regular Pupil Progress Meetings to discuss pupil progress, needs and targets.
- Assessment methods are checked for cultural bias and action is taken to remove any that is identified.
- Consideration and sensitivity is given to the appropriateness of testing EAL pupils at the earlier stages of English acquisition.
Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation.
- Targets for EAL pupils are appropriate, challenging and reviewed on a regular basis.
- Planning will reflect any identified language demands of the National Curriculum and differentiated learning opportunities will be matched to the pupil’s needs.
- Staff regularly observe, assess and record information about pupils’ developing use of language.
- When planning the curriculum, staff take account of the linguistic, cultural and religious backgrounds of families.
- Classroom activities have clear learning objectives and use appropriate materials and support to enable pupils to participate in lessons.
- Key language features of each curriculum area, e.g. key vocabulary, uses of language, forms of text, are identified.
- Enhanced opportunities are provided for speaking and listening, including both process and presentational talk, and use made of drama techniques and role play.
- Pupils have access to effective staff and peer models of spoken language.
- Additional visual support is provided, e.g. posters, pictures, photographs, objects, demonstration, use of gesture.
- Additional verbal support is provided, e.g. repetition, modelling, peer support.
- Use is made of collaborative activities that involve purposeful talk and encourage and support active participation.
- Where possible, learning progression moves from the concrete to the abstract.
- Discussion is provided before, during and after reading and writing activities.
- Scaffolding is provided for language and learning, e.g. talk frames, writing frames.
Special Educational Needs and Gifted and Talented Pupils
- Most EAL pupils needing additional support do not have SEN .
- Should SEN be identified, EAL pupils have equal access to school’s SEN provision.
- If EAL pupils are identified as Gifted and Talented, they have equal access to school’s provision.
At Mayplace, staff strive to encourage parental and community involvement by:
- Providing a welcoming induction process for newly arrived pupils and their families/carers.
- Using plain English and translators and interpreters, where appropriate and available, to ensure good spoken and written communications.
- Identifying linguistic, cultural and religious background of pupils and establishing contact with wider community where possible.
- Celebrating and acknowledging the achievements of EAL pupils in the wider community.
- Recognising and encouraging the use of first language.
- Helping parents understand how they can support their children at home, especially by continuing the development of their first language.