Resources To Share

These resources have been identified and selected for the purpose of helping multilingual families understand how to keep their children safe during school closures, and to help continue the education of English learners during such events..

Multimedia

 

Multilingual Family Podcast from Fairfax County Public Schools 

Language(s): Arabic, English, Korean, Spanish 

Multilingual Family Podcast from Fairfax County Public Schools This podcast series is produced by the Fairfax County Public Schools’ (FCPS) Office of ESOL Services and the Office of Professional Learning and Family Engagement. Podcasts episodes offer timely information related to school news and resources. The podcast covers topics such as attendance, returning to school safely, special programs, parents’ education programs, substance abuse prevention, and others. In addition to covering a variety of topics, several podcast episodes feature interviews with district and school officials and student and community advocates and may be applicable to listeners outside FCPS. The podcast is available in Spanish, Arabic, and Korean.   

COVID-19: Evidence-Based Resources 

In response to COVID-19, the 10 Regional Educational Laboratories (RELs) have collaborated to produce a series of evidence-based resources and information about teaching and learning in a remote environment, as well as other considerations brought by the pandemic. The site has a page specifically designated for English learners where visitors can learn more about a variety of topics including how to promote interactive read-alouds, increase digital engagement, and connect with families.  

TED ED 

Language(s):English 

This multimodal platform contains a variety of videos on topics related to social studies, science, health, civics, economics, psychology, and more. Each video includes comprehension questions, questions to prompt higher-order thinking and discussion, and links that allow learners to explore more about the topic on their own. The videos are brief which means that learners can easily watch them more than once to ensure comprehension. While the videos are in English, most are accompanied by a transcript which is a helpful scaffold for English learners. In addition to the videos for learners, TED ED also allows caregivers and educators to customize TED ED lessons for their students. Though the site has videos appropriate for K-12 learners, much of the content is aimed at learners third grade and higher. 

Tumble Book Library 

Language(s): English, Spanish 

Tumble Book Library offers a digital library of animated talking picture books. Books are searchable by title, author, subject, language (English, Spanish, and French books are available), length, genre, Lexile, and Accelerated Reader level. Some books include videos, lesson plans, and book report options. Tumble Book Library also includes puzzles and games. 

Learning English 

Language(s): English, Chinese 

The British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) developed Learning English with free audio, video, and text materials for adults learning English. It is also appropriate for secondary students. Materials are available as full courses by proficiency level and course components can also be completed as standalone activities. Learning English is also available in Mandarin. The website also features a Stories for Children page that was developed to help children learn English alongside their parents. Each animated short story provides a transcript and activities, both of which can be downloaded. 

National PTA: Tackling COVID-19 Together 

The National Parent Teacher Association (PTA) has created a page for parents and educators with resources for meeting educational and socio-emotional needs of students, families, and educators. The site includes the latest guidance from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and the U.S. Department of Education. The resources for families include podcasts for parents with topics such as tackling anxiety and knowing the rights of bilingual students, and resources for social and emotional support, learning at home, and healthy habits. The Frequently Asked Questions section includes information on Internet access, access to free meals, and how to support student learning at home. The site is available in English and Spanish. 

Rewordify 

Rewordify is a free online tool for simplifying text. Teachers, students, and families can enter a text or web page into a box and the site will simplify the text. The words that were simplified are highlighted. Users can click on highlighted words to see a definition and hear the word read aloud. The simplified text can also be color-coded by part of speech. Users can create and print learning activities from the text, including vocabulary lists with and without definitions, a matching activity, and a cloze activity. The site provides a demo page and a first time user guide

Californians Together 

The site has a page in Spanish, with information for families on how to continue learning at home. Another page, also in Spanish, contains resources for families with information on healthcare, free lunches for students, unemployment benefits, access to healthcare and food for undocumented immigrants, and mental health services. Californians Together provides a newsletter—Alas y Voz—on the benefits of biliteracy. It currently shifted the focus of the newsletter to sharing resources with parents on how to support their children’s learning at home. 

United for Literacy 

United for Literacy provides an online library of e-books to support phonemic awareness. The Online Library provides free access to over 400 original picture books, one-fourth of which are written in Spanish. The digital books include audio narrations in over 40 languages delivered by native speakers. The user interface can be translated to Spanish. 

Voice of America: Learning English 

Voice of America: Learning English provides news articles, recordings, videos, and lessons for beginner, intermediate, and advanced English learners. There is a “Let’s Learn English” video series for beginners split into two levels. The actors in the videos are adults. The content is most appropriate for high school students and adult learners. The articles include an audio recording and a transcript as well as vocabulary support. Voice of America includes a new Ask a Teacher program where learners can ask questions and receive answers from teachers. 

International Children’s Digital Library 

The International Children’s Digital library provides e-books from around the world in over 70 languages to read online. The site is searchable through both a simple search and advanced search. The simple search is appropriate for younger learners and allows you to search by type of main character (kids, animals, imaginary creatures), award winning books, fairy tales, and age ranges including three to five, six to nine, and 10 to 13. 

Indigenous Alliance Without Borders: Announcement Regarding COVID-19 in Indigenous Languages 

Alianza Indigena Sin Fronteras/Indigenous Alliance Without Borders is collaborating with the Indigenous Language Office at Casa Alitas Shelter (Tucson, AZ) and the International Mayan League to provide information on COVID-19 precautions in Mayan languages. Videos with information are available in over 20 Mayan languages as well as Yaqui. 

 

Guides/Articles

 

Introducing the U.S. School System to Newcomer Students and Families During—and After—the Pandemic 

Although the REL Northwest developed the guide before the COVID-19 pandemic, the information is applicable to in person, virtual, and hybrid learning models. The guide provides resources and tools for schools to welcome newcomer secondary ELs and their families to U.S. schools with information on enrolling, registering, and supporting this student population. 

International Consortium for Multilingual Education and Equity Curriculum Enhancement Packets 

Language(s): Arabic, Spanish, Vietnamese 

The International Consortium for Multilingual Education and Equity (ICMEE) has developed over 120 activity packets across disciplines, ranging from Levels 1-3 of English proficiency, and grades K-12. The learning packets are designed to support the learning and development of multilingual students in addition to or as technology-free learning resources.  They can be used in the classroom or to enhance learning at home, demonstrate growth, and to support flexible learning needs during the current pandemic and beyond. The packets include guidance to caregivers and educators in English and Spanish and they include basic student instructions for completing the packets in English, Spanish, Arabic, and Vietnamese. The breakdown of packets is as follows: 

  • English Level 1 – Entry into English 
  • English Level 1-2 – Entry into English/Building Background. These packets are appropriate for students between Levels 1 and 2 of English proficiency 
  • English Level 2 – Building Background 
  • English Level 3 – Interdisciplinary Inquiry 

 

This resource provides information from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) about COVID-19. This resource may be useful for ELs and their families to learn about what COVID-19 is and how they can protect themselves and others. Information includes links to fact sheets, posters, and other CDC resources on the topics related to the outbreak. The topics include What to do If you are Sick; Symptoms of Coronavirus; Stop the Spread of Germs; and others. Information is available in English, Spanish, Chinese, and Simplified Chinese. 

AAA Math 

This resource provides a variety of interactive math lessons. The contents are classified by math concepts and grade levels. Each lesson includes a brief explanation of the math concept, e.g., compare numbers, an interactive practice section where students can practice solving problems/equations with feedback provided immediately; and the option to play a game of how many correct responses a student can provide in 60 seconds. 

Helping Children Cope with Changes Resulting from COVID-19 

Language(s): English, Spanish 

This article, from the National Association of School Psychologists (NASP), is a guide for parents. The guide provides tips for supporting children during periods of uncertainty, including specific guidance for different age levels. It is also available in Spanish. This guide has been updated from the original document, Talking to Children about COVID-19 (Coronavirus): A Parent Guide, which is also available in Spanish, Amharic, Chinese, Korean, French, Vietnamese, Bahasa, Urdu, and Hmong. 

Learning Heroes 

The Learning Heroes’ site offers resources for parents to support their child’s social, emotional, and academic development. They have created a Keep Calm, Learning is On! roadmap for parents during school closures. The roadmap includes five ways to keep students on track when school is closed and is available in English and Spanish. The Learning Tools page provides information and resources to help parents support students at home. The site is searchable by grade level (K–12) and subject (reading, math, and life skills) and resources are available in English and Spanish. 

Importance of Home Language Series 

The Importance of Home Language Series was developed by Head Start for adults living and working with dual language learners. The series of handouts emphasizes the benefits of being bilingual, the importance of maintaining home language, and strategies for becoming fully bilingual. One of the handouts, Language at Home and in the Community, offers eight practices families can do every day at home to support language development. The series is available in English, Spanish, Arabic, Brazilian Portuguese, Chinese, Haitian Creole, and Russian. 

Abriendo Puertas/Opening Doors 

Abriendo Puertas/Opening Doors has developed Tackling Coronavirus (COVID-19) Together: Resources for Families. The site has compiled a document with resources for organizations and families as well as helpful ways to teach children about the virus, keep students engaged with learning activities at home, and best practices for staying healthy. At home learning resources include screen-free home activities. The document is available in both English and Spanish and resources will be updated regularly. 

 

At Home, Low-Tech Learning Activities 

Educator and coach Beth Skelton and colleague Mia Allen co-created At Home Learning Google Sheets with activities for English learners in grades K–2. The activities are designed to be low-tech and require minimal supervision. Each grade band contains suggested activities for reading, writing, discussing, helping, and creating. The categories were designed to support language development in the four language domains (listening, speaking, reading, and writing) as well as social emotional learning and creativity. The resource is also available in Spanish

Tween Tribune (Smithsonian) 

The Smithsonian’s Tween Tribune provides articles on a range of topics for learners in grades K–12. Each article can be adjusted to one of four Lexile levels. The site also has a collection of articles in Spanish. Topics include animals, art, food and health, national news, science, sports, and technology. The site is also searchable by articles that contain video and by Lexile level ranging from 500L–1600L. 

Colorín colorado 

Language(s): English, Spanish, Chinese, Simplified Chinese 

 

This resource provides information from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) about COVID-19. This resource may be useful for ELs and their families to learn about what COVID-19 is and how they can protect themselves and others. Information includes links to fact sheets, posters, and other CDC resources on the topics related to the outbreak. The topics include What to do If you are Sick; Symptoms of Coronavirus; Stop the Spread of Germs; and others. Information is available in English, Spanish, Chinese, and Simplified Chinese. 

AAA Math 

This resource provides a variety of interactive math lessons. The contents are classified by math concepts and grade levels. Each lesson includes a brief explanation of the math concept, e.g., compare numbers, an interactive practice section where students can practice solving problems/equations with feedback provided immediately; and the option to play a game of how many correct responses a student can provide in 60 seconds. 

Webinars

 

Helping Young Learners at Home: Simple and Fun Activities to Strengthen Development 

In this webinar developed by RELs West, Northwest, and Northeast & Islands presenters highlight and demonstrate how to use nine activity sheets informed by the 2014 What Works Clearinghouse Practice Guide, Teaching Academic Content and Literacy to English Learners in Elementary and Middle School. The activity sheets are available in English and Spanish for parents and caregivers to use with their children at home. 

Supporting Families of Immigrants & Refugees During Remote Learning 

This webinar recording from Immigrant Connections addresses how schools and districts can support newly arrived immigrants and refuges during remote learning. The speakers share resources and strategies applicable to EL families with a variety of needs. 

Engaging Culturally & Linguistically Diverse Students & Families: Social Emotion Wellness in the Home 

Language(s): English 

This webinar from the Center for Applied Linguistics (CAL) shares resources and activities that promote social-emotional wellness for students, their families, and communities. The webinar is presented by Jennifer Escue (Refugee Youth & Elders Services Supervisor at Catholic Charities of Tennessee) and Alice Prichard, Ph.D. (clinical psychologist). The presenters describe the impact of toxic stress on children, the importance of supporting social-emotional wellness, the domains of social-emotional wellness, and simple, at-home activities to support social-emotional wellbeing.