E.S.O.L.: English for Speakers of Other Languages
Immigrants to America come here with hopes and dreams for their futures. They are willing to work hard, but to succeed they need to become proficient in the language of their new country. For over a hundred years, libraries, churches, and other social institutions have been places where newly arrived immigrants could go to learn English. The tradition continues today with the help of adult education programs across the United States, some of which receive federal funding.
According to Betsy Mathias, the program planner of the Regional Adult Education, the demand for classes is tremendous. Fortunately, the community has been helping their organization to provide classes. Local groups, such as churches, volunteer their space and have tutors to help meet the need. Classes are held throughout the area and meet in many different locations and at different times of the day. Ms. Mathias is working to make her office an information clearinghouse for area residents in need of classes. Nancy Buck, Outreach Services Coordinator of the library, works to coordinate volunteer tutor training for both the ESOL and GED programs and welcomes would-be tutors.
For now, at least six churches and three branches of the Central Rappahannock Regional Library (Salem Church, Snow, and Porter) provide ESOL studies. Ms. Mathias encourages any groups who are now offering or wish to offer classes to please contact her at 540-898-8165. Her office, as well as the Alliance for Literacy based at the Central Rappahannock Regional Library, has books and videos that can be helpful to both students and teachers.
The Alliance for Literacy helps match students (learning English or basic skills/GED) with volunteer tutors. Pairs work one-to-one and usually meet one hour/week. The free one-to-one tutoring is an option that adult students have in pursuing their learning goals. For more information, contact Nancy Buck at (540) 372-1144.
Below is a listing of some Web sites and library materials that may be helpful to ESOL students and teachers:
In the Library
Contemporary's Citizenship Now: A Guide for Naturalization by Aliza Becker and Laurie Edwards, in cooperation with Travelers and Immigrants Aid of Chicago.
A citizenship preparation textbook and audiocassette for learners of English as a second language.
Ingles para Hispanohablantes [sound recording] ; Un Curso Completo, Revisadoy Modernizado from Living Language.
A complete course in elementary to intermediate English for native Spanish speakers. Includes 40 lessons, with conversation guide and dictionary. 2 audiocassettes.
Ingles Practico: Practical English for Spanish Speakers.
Includes two audiocassettes and one booklet.
Inglés/English for Spanish Speakers.
Presents a beginning language learning program designed to teach the listener English in progressive steps.
El programa linguístico de Pimsleur es un sistema integrado que le proporciona a usted inmersión en el idioma, lo anima a escuchar, a entender y a hacer uso del idioma, todo al mismo tiempo.
Skill-builder Vocabulary and Spelling Practice, #1 and #2
Use your computer to master the vocabulary and spelling skills you need to pass important tests or succeed on the job.
Please go to http://www.LearningExpressLibrary.com or see a librarian to take this online test.
Speaking of Survival by Daniel B. Freeman.
This sound cassette is designed for adult learners of English as a Second Language (ESL) at the high beginner/low intermediate level.
Stage One: The Natural Approach to Speaking English.
Video lessons designed for English Second Language (ESL) students to listen to English as it is spoken in the United States. Each video has conversations on a specific topic (home, directions, travel, work, clothes, school, etc.).
- The ESL Miscellany: A Treasury of Cultural and Linguistic Information by Raymond C. Clark, Patrick R. Moran, Arthur A. Burrows.
A basic book, especially handy for teachers who may be working overseas with limited resources or private tutors. It includes lists of common words grouped thematically, guidelines, and different methods for teaching ESL. The authors grant permission to photocopy any pages for classroom use.
LifePrints series by Nancy B. Martz.
Teachers' resource files and assessment tools are included for instructors using the LifePrints study guide.
Light 'n Lively Reads for ESL, Adult, and Teen Readers: A Thematic Bibliography by La Vergne Rosow.
A subject index of recommended reading: arts, sports, myths & legends, mystery & suspense, letters & journals, parenting, science, biographies, U.S. citizenship, and more.
Teacher to Teacher.
12 videocassettes and an accompanying booklet provide training and guidance for teachers of ESL and adult basic education (ABE) students.
Part of the CRRL's Adult Literacy collection.
On the Web
English as a Second Language
A starting point for ESL learners who want to learn English through the World Wide Web. Links to English listening and speaking, grammar, reading and writing, ESL course information, bilingual dictionaries, ESL learners' home pages, and other ESL sites.
Links of Interest to Students & Teachers of English as a Second Language
A plain vanilla listing of good links for students and teachers: grammar & English usage, pronunciation, quizzes, student projects, survival English, articles, book reviews, lessons, teaching tips, and links to other ESOL teachers' Web pages.
Regional Adult Education in the Fredericksburg Area
This page details programs for the City of Fredericksburg and the counties of Spotsylvania, Caroline, King George, and Stafford. TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) and Video ESL classes may be available.
Call their office for the most current class schedule.
Virginia Adult Learning Resource Center
"We provide adult education and literacy resources, information, and professional development in Virginia."
Students will find useful Web sites that are targeted to the needs of adult learners, including those interested in English as a second language. For tutors, the site has lists of government grants and projects, research articles, statistics, scholarships, and other teacher resources.
Best viewed with Internet Explorer.