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El Arte Olvidado: The Forgotten Art of Academic Speaking and Listening

Oral language development is often overlooked as a key element of success for English language learners. The effects of being able to speak confidently and coherently ripple far beyond conversations. In fact, the connection between speaking and listening, reading comprehension, and even writing is undeniable, which makes it all the more important to explicitly teach English language learners how to engage in academic discussions and collaborations. In this session, participants will learn how to successfully support language equity in classrooms through the consistent use of oral language protocols that can be applied in all content areas and in every grade level.


One or more presenters on this session represent an organization selling products or providing services to the ESEA market.

This talk was presented at:
2019 National ESEA Conference
February 2019 in Kansas City, MO
For more information:
Amber Parks

Stemming from her background in special education (deaf and hard of hearing emphasis), Amber Parks has always been fascinated by the importance of making language as concrete as possible for students. Particularly for students who are deaf or hard of hearing, the need for language to be visual is paramount for their comprehension and use of new vocabulary. Along with students with hearing loss, she also taught English as a second language to students in Spain and South Africa and continues to work with many English language learners in classrooms across the country. Throughout her teaching career, students continually challenged her to find ways to visually show thinking processes and language structures. As she worked with teachers and students on three continents, she developed a revolutionary approach to writing, Writing with Design (www.writingwithdesign.com). She’s now on a mission to transform the caliber of language and writing development in classrooms across the country by combining her expertise in language acquisition for students who are deaf and hard of hearing, her experience teaching English as a second language, and her passion for writing.

Joy Wenke

With over 33 years of teaching experience working with English language learners, bilingual educator, Joy Wenke believes everyone is an academic language learners. She is on a mission to maximize Tier 1 instruction in classrooms for the purpose of nurturing independent and critical readers and writers. For the last 7 years, she has worked as a consultant and professional learning community coach to help teachers improve their Tier 1 instructional practices through providing professional development in close reading of complex text, writing, English language development, best practices for student engagement, and model lessons in classrooms. Woven throughout her work is the fundamental flow of the development of literacy skills from listening and speaking to reading and writing. By using systemic protocols to support accountable talk in classrooms, students demonstrate that the ability to speak well is the fundamental precursor to coherent and vivid writing. Joy has trained teachers across the United States in the best practices that support well-balanced literacy programs. Passionate about equity for all students, she has the skills and ability to help teachers become facilitators of engaging and purposeful learning environments.