Skip to main content
California Department of Education Logo

Transcript: Grade Five ELA Designated ELD

Grade Five English Language Arts (ELA) and Social Studies Designated English Language Development (ELD) Video Transcript.

Grade Five English Language Arts and Social Studies Designated English Language Development: Oral Language Analysis

Introductory Slides (00:00–00:29)

Narrator: Welcome to the California Department of Education Integrated and Designated English Language Development Transitional Kindergarten through Grade Twelve Video Series. This video is used by permission of the owner, Sobrato Early Academic Language Program, a California nonprofit corporation. Copyright 2019, Sobrato Early Academic Language Program. All rights reserved.

Title Slide: SEAL: Sobrato Early Academic Language Model

Setting up the Context for the Learning (00:29–3:18)

Joanna Meadvin (SEAL Trainer): OLA stands for Oral Language Analysis and it's a formative assessment that we use with our English Language Learners.

Teacher 1: Right here I have a prompt, a question for us to talk about.

Joanna Meadvin: What the OLA does is it allows a teacher to take a measurement of where a student is at a certain moment in time and also where they are in regards to the unit, to the actual content that they're learning.

Teacher 1: [Reading a sentence on the board] “How did westward expansion affect different groups of people?” So, see this word “affect”? That's a clue to your brain that we're going to do cause and effect.

Joanna Meadvin: The teacher asks the students the question, makes sure that they understand the prompt, maybe highlights the important words like “describe” and “characteristics” and then writes down verbatim what each student says.

Teacher 1: For this activity, you guys, you can pull it out of your head if you remember but you— feel free to use the charts. So, who has an idea?

Joanna Meadvin: It's almost always recommended to incorporate a language function into the question using language like, "Describe the characteristics of" or "Compare and contrast this and that" depending on what the language function is of the unit.

Student 1: About the trail of, trail of tears.

Teacher 1: What do you want to say about it?

Student 1: Um... the effect was that, um, people had to walk a lot and some of them died.

Teacher 1: Some of them died. What else?

Student 1: Um... and, and died on the trail.

Joanna Meadvin: I think there's sometimes a tendency for teachers to go straight to the written because it's right in front of them. And so, we try and focus, when we're having teachers plan designated English language development, on oral language first because if they have rich oral language then that will eventually translate into their writing.

Student 2: And then, for they can have more land. And then the trail of tears began.

Joanna Meadvin: Traditionally when we talk about designated English language development we like to say you're both preparing students for whole class lessons to come or responding to what you're noticing that they're doing. What the OLA does is it allows teachers to have a concrete piece of evidence that they can look at and see how they're getting towards the spoken English that we would like them to speak, but it allows us to then analyze a piece of text and think about how we can use the English Language Development Standards to push them to the next level.

Teacher 2: So, remember we started all the way over here and we worked our way over here. How did that affect different groups of people? When you're ready to answer you can stand over here and do it.

Student 3: I think they want to affects, they want to travel around.

Teacher 2: Can you say that one more time?

Joanna Meadvin: The most crucial step is the analysis of the OLA. The teachers will take the OLA back and work in grade level teams sometimes with a coach. And the first step is to analyze what we call approximation.

Teachers Analyze the OLA (3:19–8:00)

Teacher 2: So, I took this today with a group of my kids you probably know pretty well.

Joanna Meadvin: We prefer the term “approximation” to the term “error” because “approximation” indicates that students are moving from one language to another and they're approximating standard English, and so we want to celebrate what they're bringing instead of looking at it as a deficit.

Teacher 3: [Reading a student’s writing] “The westward expansion affected other people because of the Oregon trail caused people to get there to claim their free land.”

Teacher 2: Okay, well you got like the cause and effect thing right there, right. Like he has that. Might not be used totally correctly but at least he's trying it.

Teacher 3: He's got some transition.

Teacher 2: It sounds a lot like boxes and bullets, right? So, if like from writers, when he's, can you imagine that? So, like his first point would be box, jot.

Teacher 3: That would be like a bullet.

Teacher 2: [Reading a student’s writing] “The effect was that some of them died on the trail and cried because their” (dot, like) “their family members died.”

Teacher 3: He uses the word “affect” so he's definitely going back to the prompt, trying to explain his answer. He's trying to answer this, which is good.

Teacher 2: The thing that jumps out at me, that we all hear all the time, is this one. The "for they can", right. So she's like translating in her head from like “para” and “por”, already going that way. It doesn't necessarily sound like she's trying to go back and answer the prompt as much or like using a structure as much as these two are.

Teacher 4: If we were to pull them into a small group, are there any patterns that we see amongst all three of them?

Teacher 2: Definitely with all three of them try to bring back in like the sentence frames and have them use the cause and effect sentence frames.

Joanna Meadvin: The next step is actually to crack open the ELD Standards and start looking through them and figure out, okay how can we push our students to the next level? If they were going to write this in, you know, sort of an ideal form what would it look like? And now let's plan a series of lessons to push them towards that.

Teacher 4: These are clearly not emerging students. But maybe if we look at expanding or bridging we might find some things that would be helpful. Like, for example, combining clauses.

Teacher 3: I was also looking at like the connecting ideas, which might be on the other page for you guys. Um, but this is for expanding and for bridging—it says “Combine clauses in a wide variety of ways creating compound and complex sentences to make connections between and join ideas”, right? It seems like especially with Edwin that he needs that linking, he needs that support of combining those clauses and connecting their ideas.

Teacher 2: Mmmhmmm.

Joanna Meadvin: The teacher collaboration actually serves a number of purposes. One is simply they're able to sort of bounce ideas off each other, they're suggesting standards, they're working back and forth. Another thing that's really wonderful is that student teachers can then say, “Oh you know I know that I have two kids in my class who are having that exact same issue. During our designated ELD time why don't I send them to you and you can send me these other students,” and that allows teachers to be very efficient.

Teacher 3: I know that there are probably a couple of students in my class too that could benefit from like those types of lessons.

Teacher 2: Mmmhmmm.

Joanna Meadvin: And then the next step is to plan a series of designated ELD lessons that address whatever it is that you saw coming up in the OLA.

Teacher 2: This, like, subject matter is so heavy anyway maybe we should kind of like back off of that and have them try just using the sentence frames with something they know first for day one. We'll do sentence frames: play soccer or Fortnite or whatever it's gonna be.

Teacher 3: The other thing that we were also thinking about, right, was using those cause and effect graphic organizers. So, using that with something known.

Teacher 2: I see what you're saying. Okay.

Joanna Meadvin: Analyzing with your peers and getting their ideas about “how do I address this, how do I address that,” it's actually extremely empowering.

Teacher 4: In your work today, you gave them more than one way, more than one cause and effect sentence frame to use, so to see that there's more than one way that they can say this.

Teacher 2: Yeah, so we could even do, we could show them the graphic organizer that has all the affects and then these are the different ways of saying it, and those with different ones.

Teacher 3: Mmmhmmm.

Teacher 2: Cool. I like it. So, model it first, graphic org and then show them the sentence frames for them to try it. Yeah, cool. So, we have day one, graphic orgs with things that they know. Just to make sure that they know how to use them correctly. Day two is using sentence frames with this, revisiting it and then day...

Teacher 3: Yeah, they did a lot of great things.

Teacher 2: Yeah, yeah, they did great things and we want to definitely make sure they know that. And then day three would be going to show, look if you take this out it makes more sense and then there's also these different ways of saying it in a more cohesive way.

Teacher 4: Sounds like a good plan.

Joanna Meadvin: One of the difficulties with designated ELD is that it's hard to fit into the day. But once you get that small group, when you have four or five or six students sitting right in front of you and you're using a sentence frame and you're moving words around and you're having them say it, the change that you can hear in their ability to produce language is really pretty transformative.

Designated ELD Small Group Lesson (8:01–11:55)

Teacher 5: And so, we actually were using some sentence frames and we actually said, "I disagree with the principal's policy." When we actually create a graphic organizer like this where we do some note-taking, we don't necessarily write in complete sentences do we? No. But is this the way that we talk?

Students: No.

Teacher 5: Do we do that?

Students: No.

Teacher 5: When we're having a conversation, we need to create a complete sentence. So here are some transition words. I made a chart and I've broken the transition words into words that you can say anytime.

Joanna Meadvin: A lot of our long-term English learners tend to stay quiet, um because they've learned that if they don't speak up nobody will notice the gaps in their language. They may be absorbing things but they're not getting the practice of having them come out of their mouths. And so, what the small group does is it gives them a safe and protected environment to practice.

Teacher 5: Okay, so “furthermore…” Go ahead and choose one.

Student 4: Eat snacks.

Teacher 5: Eat snacks? Okay, so go ahead. So, use “furthermore.”

Student 4: Furthermore, eat snacks.

Teacher 5: So, can we just say “Furthermore eat snacks”? Can you put that into a complete sentence?

Student 4: Furthermore, you could eat snacks.

Teacher 5: Or could we say, “you could eat snacks” or “you, we, you could have time to eat snacks”?

Student 4: Yeah.

Teacher 5: Okay. Why don't you say it first, “so you can have time.”

Student 4: Furthermore you, you have time to eat snacks.

Teacher 5: Ah, can we say that together?

Teacher and Students: Furthermore, you have time to eat your snacks.

Joanna Meadvin: The teacher knew that she was going to be doing note-taking with the students, she was going to do boxes and bullets and she was also going to be doing a web. And so she wanted to prepare her English language learners for what was coming up in the class. But she also noticed when she did an OLA that they were having trouble with that conjunction "so that" or "in order to."

Teacher 5: One thing that I was noticing in your talking and your writing is that you're using some things in English that may be possibly coming from Spanish. Do you know this word?

Teacher and Students: [Reading in Spanish from chart teacher is holding up] “Para” or “para que.”

Teacher 5: Translate it into English.

Students: For.

Teacher 5: Okay. Normally in Spanish you would use “para” or “para que” when you're giving a reason. I didn't really know this because I don't speak Spanish. I had to do some extra research. Okay? And so, um, when we say it in English we don't actually say “for.”

Joanna Meadvin: She highlighted that in the OLA and she thought, "Okay well that's going to be really crucial if they're writing an opinion piece, so I want to address that piece of it extremely explicitly."

Teacher 5: You know what this is called? This is called conjunctions. Can you say “conjunctions”?

Students: Conjunctions.

Teacher 5: Okay, so again instead of saying “for” or “para” or “para que” we could also say “so that.” Let's read that sentence.

Teacher and Students: Furthermore, we need more recess time so that play with friends.

Teacher 5: Wait. That doesn't sound right. It doesn't make sense. What are we missing? So that…

Student 5: We can.

Teacher 5: We can play with friends.

Joanna Meadvin: A successful OLA means that a teacher has crafted a thoughtful prompt, has taken dictation from the students, has analyzed the product with her colleagues using her ELD Standards, and then has designed a series of lessons that address what she sees in the OLA, and ultimately that students are exceeding expectations on their performance task.

Student 4: We need more recess time another reason.

Student 6: It doesn't sound good.

Student 4: So that.

Student 7: Yeah, yeah.

Student 4: So that we can…

Student 6: Play.

Teacher 5: Okay, I you need your transition word. Yes.

Students: Furthermore, we need more recess time so that we can play.

Closing Slide (11:55–11:58)

SEAL Sobrato Early Academic Language Model

Questions:   Language Policy and Leadership Office | 916-319-0845
Last Reviewed: Wednesday, April 27, 2022
Recently Posted in English Learners
  • Title III EL & Immigrant Program Allocations 21-22 (added 15-Dec-2022)
    This page contains a directory of local educational agencies (LEAs), both direct-funded and consortia, that are receiving English Learner (EL) and/or Immigrant student program funding during fiscal year (FY) 2021-22.