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The School Improvement Specialists
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ELL Video - "Vehicle" for Success!

The strategy in the video was developed by School Improvement Specialist PJ Toburen in order to help students having extreme difficulty with being able to recite definitions accurately and precisely. Particulary, ELL and students with substandard English. In the video, they say "If it is made to take you places, it is a vehicle." Challenged students had a tendency to leave out words like "is" or "a." 

The first part of the strategy was to firm the parts, then the whole. The statement was broken into much smaller, yet meaningful parts. "If it is made." "To take you places." "It is a vehicle." Toburen still saw students struggling with including every word, so she added hand motions. They put up one finger for each of the first three words and then a sweep for the fourth word. Each phrase had four words.

Once the strategy worked for the first phrase, it was applied to each of the next two phrases. After each phrase was firm, the whole sentence was practiced, and the result? Success, which can be viewed in the video!

PJ modeled how to do this during each step, and had the students practice it with her. Then, they did it on their own. Sometimes it was necessary for her to model and lead several times. Once she knew they were confident in themselves, she had them do it on their own. They were successful.

And there is nothing JP loves more than a good success story!


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