How Libraries Can Better Serve English Language Learners Compiled by Wendy Tucker from the articles below: Library Demographics, Services and Programs Serving Non-English Speakers:2007 Analysis of written by Denise Davis Library Literacy Programs for English Language Learners written by Eileen McMurrer Serving Linguistically and Culturally Diverse Students: Strategies for the School Librarian written by Melvian Dame History of Library Literacy Programs l In 1655 colonist Robert Keayne willed money for the founding of a public library in Boston. l Later industrialist Enoch Pratt and Andrew Carnegie endowed public libraries and stipulated local governments provide support for libraries l Enoch Pratt’s libraries were to be for all rich and poor without distinction of race or color. l In 1960 the War on Poverty Program increased money for public libraries to reach out to new immigrants. l Between 1988 and 1995 the State of California Libraries analyzed and restructured programs to better serve ELL patrons. Current Initiatives l The American Library Association(ALA) supports a nationwide effort to enhance the literacy services of local libraries to “encourage opportunities for maxium intellectual participation for underserved populations” More… l Broward County, Florida publishes a newsletter in six different languages that cover topics of interest to new immigrants. l Queens Public Library in New York has serviced over 10,000 of adults in its reading and literacy programs. l Arlington County, Virginia library has satellite library collections in apartment complexes with large immigrant populations. l Arlington County, Virginia has bilingual weekly story times at four of their branches and apartment complexes. l Arlington also has a “CyberCenter” computer learning lab in a branch to teach reading and other literacy skills. The lab was funded by the Gates Foundation in 2001. Conclusion l The American Library Association and many local libraries are working hard to meet the various literacy and reading needs of English Language Learners. The development of library skills is an important part of learning English and learning how to read. It is important that public and school libraries continue to bridge the gap for ELL’s so they can become equal participants in our communities. Strategies for the School Librarian: How to help our ELL students want to read. l A Welcoming Place: Make students feel special by hosting a special orientation for ELL students. l Each student would get a modified map of the library and information about the library services. l Thereafter ELL students would have smaller follow-up sessions with the librarian. Continued… l ELL students were given individual assignments to complete using library resources. l To encourage students to use the library regularly, the library started a collection of reading materials in their native languages. Books and materials were borrowed from larger public libraries and embassies. l High interest low level paperbacks were purchased and borrowed from a local library. l A listening station with a cd-player and a collection of read along books in English was made available.
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