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Stages of an ELL student

ELL students go through five stages

Key Terminology

before they are comfortable speaking

the English language. Teachers should
encourage students to speak the
language when they are ready.

Pre-productive stage, aka silent

It is imperative that teachers

understand the following terms.
ESL- English Second Language

period. During this time students

do not speak at all.

Early production. Students develop

ELL- English Language Learners

LEP- Limited English Proficiency


receptive and active vocabulary.


This stage lasts up to 6 months.

ELP- English Language Proficiency

Speech Emergence- Students

ESL is the services and/or

communicate with simple words or


programs available to the ELL

A teachers guide to better

understand the ELL student and
ESL programs


Intermediate fluency Students use

more complex sentences to


Advanced fluency- approaching

grade level language.

By: Meghan Locker

External Factors for

ELL students
Not only are students affected by
internal factors, but they are also
affected externally as well.
Culture and status- If a student
is from a lower status culture,
they may not be open to learning
a new language.
Instruction-Some teachers may
not have the experience
necessary to engage the ELL
students, but it is always
important to continue
implementing strategies.
Motivation- Motivation has to
come from the student. Teachers
cannot necessarily control the
students motivation to learn, but
they must always encourage

Internal Factors
for ELL students
Teachers need to be mindful of
the internal factors that could
interfere with the students ability
to learn a new language. Below
are areas that may impact the
learning process for an ELL
Personality- Introverts tend to
progress slower because they
keep to themselves and are afraid
to ask for help. Extroverts have
no problem asking questions and
taking risks.
Experiences- The student that
has had positive experiences will
develop self-esteem and will be
more likely to progress faster.
Age- Older students with more of
a solid understanding of their
own language tend to learn the
second language much easier.


BICS- Basic Interpersonal
Communication Skill

These language skills are

needed in day-to-day social
These skills occur between
6 months and up to 2
years after being exposed
to the English Language
With this stage, it can be
misleading when the ELL
students displays some
English skills.

CALP- Cognitive Academic

Language Proficiency

This is formal academic

Listening, speaking,
reading and writing about
It is necessary for
successful continuation in
CALP occurs within 5-7
school years.
Skills involved: comparing,
classifying, synthesizing,
evaluating, and inferring