Cultural needs of ells decapua marshall tesol '12


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Presentation for Intercultural Interest Section, TESOL 2012

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Cultural needs of ells decapua marshall tesol '12

  1. 1. Andrea DeCapua Helaine W. MarshallThe College of New Rochelle Long Island University
  2. 2. “Culture acts as a filter or set of lenses through which we view and interpret the world around us.”DeCapua, A, & Wintergerst, W. 2004. Crossing cultures in thelanguage classroom. Ann Arbor, MI: University of MichiganPress. (
  3. 3. Needs of SLIFE• Develop basic literacy skills• Learn basic and grade-level subject area concepts• Develop academic ways of thinking• Adapt to cultural differences in learning and teaching
  4. 4. Two Aspects of Culture1 Ways of Thinking2 Individualism / Collectivism
  5. 5. Western-Style Formal Education • Literacy as central • Scientific reasoning • Logical deduction • Abstract knowledge • Formal school settings(Anderson-Levitt, 2003; Flynn, 2007; Grigorenko, 2007; Ozmon & Carver, 2008)
  6. 6. Informal Ways of Learning• Revolves around immediate needs of family and community• Grounded in observation, participation in sociocultural practices of family and community• Has immediate relevance• Centered on orality(Faulstich Orellana, 2001; Gahunga, Gahunga, & Luseno, 2011; Paradise & Rogoff, 2009)
  7. 7. Sample Question What do dogs and rabbits have in common?(Flynn, 2007)
  8. 8. Academic Tasks• True/False • Philadelphia is the capital of Pennsylvania. • New York City is the capital of New York State.• Classification • Categorize these objects
  9. 9. A Continuum of Ways of Thinking & Learning SLIFEInformal Western-styleLearning Formal Education
  10. 10. Cultural Dimensions of: Individualism and Collectivism(Hofstede, 2001; Nisbett, 2003; Oyserman & Lee, 2008; Triandis, 1995; 2000)
  11. 11. Individualism• Personal efforts praised, rewarded• Personal interests, desires, primary• Personal judgments• Personal responsibility• “Self-actualization”
  12. 12. Collectivism• “We” rather than “I.”• People see themselves as part of an interconnected whole• “Web” of relationships• Group is more important than any single individual
  13. 13. Assumptions of North American Teachers and Learners 1. The goals of instruction are a) to produce independent learners b) to prepare the learners for their future 2. The learner brings along a) preparation for academic tasks b) an urge to compete and excel as an individual(Adapted from DeCapua & Marshall, 2011)
  14. 14. (Ibarra, 2001)
  15. 15. Mutually Adaptive Learning Paradigm - MALP• Instructional Model• Elements from students’ learning paradigm• Elements from North American learning paradigm• Transitional approach to close achievement gapMarshall, 1998; DeCapua & Marshall, 2011
  16. 16. Two Different Learning Paradigms Aspects of North American SLIFE Learning Classrooms Immediate FutureCONDITIONS Relevance Relevance Interconnectedness Independence Shared IndividualPROCESSES Responsibility Accountability Oral Transmission Written Word Pragmatic Tasks Academic TasksACTIVITIES(Adapted from DeCapua & Marshall, 2009, 2011; Marshall, 1994,1998)
  17. 17. MALP SLIFE North American Classrooms Immediate FutureAccept SLIFE Relevance Relevanceconditions Interconnectedness IndependenceCombine SLIFE &North American Shared Individualprocesses Responsibility Accountability with Oral Transmission Written WordFocus on newactivities with Pragmatic Academicfamiliar language Tasks& content Tasks(Adapted from DeCapua & Marshall, 2009, 2010; Marshall 1994, 1998)
  18. 18. Betty’s Class• Ages: 18-61• Education: None to 5th grade• Classes: – ESL – Hmong Literacy – Life-skills Math – Problem Posing• Origin: Hmong from Laos
  19. 19. Class Diagram• Crossing the Mekong• Interviewing at home• Sharing data in class• Drawing map & flags• Using sentence frame• Entering data• Responding to questions
  20. 20. Paj Ntaub
  21. 21. More about MALP?• Visit:• Contact us: