The following chart shows how the ELL Proficiency Standards can be aligned with the Arizona Language Arts Academic Standards (ALAAS). In particular, it is necessary to focus on second-grade learners and their reading skills.
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It is possible to identify several similarities between ELL Proficiency Standards and the state standards set in Arizona. In both cases, the learners are required to understand the punctuation rules and capitalization (Arizona Department of Education, 2013, p. 4). This knowledge is necessary for understanding the meaning of the text and fluent reading.
Furthermore, one should speak about the need to identify the correspondence between phonemes and letters. Apart from that, educators attach importance to the ability of students to make predictions about the meaning of the text. Moreover, second-grade learners are expected to know how to find relevant information, especially with the help of visual cues such as headings or table of content. These skills are critical for becoming effective readers and learners.
Nevertheless, there are some differences that should be taken into consideration. First of all, according to state standards, learners should be able to segment words into the syllable. However, the importance of this skill is not emphasized in the ELL Proficiency Standards. In this case, more attention is paid to the ability of students to distinguish between “initial, medial, and final sounds” (Arizona Department of Education, 2013, p. 5).
Furthermore, the state standards imply that learners can find specific information within the text to answer the questions asked by educators (Scott Foresman Reading Street, 2011, p. 34). Moreover, the readers should understand the causal relations between events mentioned by the author (Scott Foresman Reading Street, 2011, p. 34).
However, these requirements are not present in the ELL Proficiency Standards. Furthermore, one should speak about the ability to identify the purpose of a specific text. In other words, learners should reflect on possible goals that the author tried to achieve. These examples indicate that ALAAS require a greater number of competences from a learner.
On the whole, it is possible to say that ALAAS implies that learners have a better grasp of vocabulary because this prerequisite is necessary for searching for information within the text or identifying causal relations between events.
Arizona Department of Education. (2013). ELL Stage II: Grades 1‐2. Retrieved from http://www.azed.gov/english-language-learners/files/2011/09/stage-ii-all.pdf
Scott Foresman Reading Street. (2011) Arizona Language Arts Academic Standards. Retrieved from http://www.pearsonschool.com/correlations/MR25.pdf