To address these challenges, there is need for teachers to employ specific strategies that can improve students learning experience and further improve performance among them (Egbert & Ernst-Slavit, 2010).
To ensure that students engage meaningfully and that they benefit from each other when learning mathematics, I suggest collaborative learning to be applied in class. Under this strategy, the teacher forms groups of four or five students, with each group containing an English native speaker. It is also ensured that students work with diverse student backgrounds; a factor that allows each student to get exposed to different cultures. This strategy relies on the finding that collaborative learning among students can help break language barriers better compared to direct teacher-student interaction (Anahalt, Farias & Farias, 2009).
One of the main benefits of collaborative learning is that it fosters friendship among students from diverse backgrounds. Students, therefore, learn to rely on each other in a positive way when solving mathematics problems. Collaborative learning, in this case, uses diversity as a tool for learning rather than a challenge for English language learners. Additionally, this strategy promotes socially constructed learning, where the teacher acts as a mediator. The teacher uses language to monitor interactions within social relationships that in this case are groups of students. This benefit relies on the proposition that what individuals are made up of and how they think are functions of their social relationships. This strategy equally provides a rich language, encourages thinking, and consequently yields high-level academic performance among ELLs (Anahalt, Farias & Farias, 2009).
One of the technologies presented by Grandgenett, Harris and Hofer (2009), is the virtual manipulative that allows teachers and students to concretely represent abstract ...
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