Educating English Language Learners in an Inclusive Environment

Second Edition

by Youb Kim (Author) Patricia H. Hinchey (Author)
©2019 Textbook XX, 154 Pages


For teachers and teacher educators striving to address a growing number of state mandates relating to the education of English language learners (ELLs), Educating English Language Learners in an Inclusive Environment, Second Edition provides a reader-friendly survey of key topics, including: legal and professional imperatives, cultural concerns, linguistics, literacy instruction, assessment, policy, and politics. This overview will be useful to in-service teachers with little or no preparation for working with ELLs but who nevertheless face legislative demands to teach both academic content and English. It will also be useful to teacher educators trying to squeeze preparation for working with ELLs into already overflowing teacher preparation programs. Though many try, no one text can provide exhaustive information; there is simply too much to learn. This second edition instead provides readers with a road map to critical topics and to specific resources they can use independently to learn more, as they will surely need to do.

Table Of Contents

  • Cover
  • Title
  • Copyright
  • About the author
  • About the book
  • Advance Praise for Educating English Language Learners in an Inclusive Environment
  • This eBook can be cited
  • Dedication
  • Contents
  • Foreword
  • Preface to the Second Edition
  • Acknowledgments
  • 1. Imperatives: Why Should You Care?
  • Behind the Acronym: Voices from the Classroom
  • Beyond the Acronym: Schools Failing Students
  • Moving Beyond the Myths: Facts and Figures
  • Professionalism
  • Unions and Professionalism
  • National Education Association
  • American Federation of Teachers
  • Standards and Professionalism
  • Standards for Teacher Preparation
  • Standards for Student Performance
  • Implications for Assessment of Tomorrow’s Teachers
  • A More Positive Perspective
  • Explorations
  • Related Readings
  • 2. Culture: Beyond Tacos and Lo Mein
  • Culture/s: Everyone Has—Many
  • To Herd Is Human
  • Language Norms
  • Teachers and Language
  • Children, Language, and Identity
  • Beyond Language
  • Cultural Norms, Cultural Routines, Routine Conflicts
  • Classroom Norms, Classroom Routines, Classroom Conflicts
  • Communication and Body Language
  • Teacher and Parent Roles
  • Values
  • What’s a Teacher to Do?
  • Use Multicultural Literature as Windows and Mirrors
  • Make an Effort to Visit and Learn about the Students’ Home Communities
  • Use the Internet
  • Summary
  • Explorations
  • Related Readings
  • 3. Language: You Know More—and Less—Than You Think
  • Language: Facets, (Mis)Perceptions, Power, and Emotion
  • Facets of Human Language
  • Language and (Mis)Perceptions
  • Language and Power
  • Language and Emotions
  • Language Development
  • Knowing a Word
  • Oral Language vs. Written Language
  • First Language Development
  • Second Language Development
  • Influence of the First Language and Other Predictable Errors
  • The Least Teachers Need to Know about English
  • Lexical Categories
  • Word Order
  • Cognates
  • Morphemes
  • Summary
  • Explorations
  • Related Readings
  • 4. Nurturing Literacy in English: Ways to Empower Students
  • What Is Literacy?
  • Definitions: Who Cares? (You Should!)
  • The World as Text, Reading as Transaction, and Emergent Literacy
  • The World as Text
  • Reading as Transaction
  • Emergent Literacy
  • Finally: A Definition of Literacy
  • Implications: Literacy as Power in the World
  • How Does Literacy in English Develop?
  • Teachers’ Misreading
  • Literacy in First Language vs. Second Language
  • Oral Language Development
  • Implications: Cultural Capital and Classroom Discourse
  • Cultural Capital
  • Classroom Discourse
  • Literacy: Beyond C-A-T and into Social Consequences
  • Summary
  • Explorations
  • Related Readings
  • 5. Effective Instruction and Assessment: Good Teaching for ELLs Is Good Teaching
  • Essentials for Any Inclusive Classroom
  • Building an Inclusive and Supportive Classroom Community
  • Respect
  • Physical Environment
  • Predictability
  • Relationships
  • Building Vocabulary
  • Ongoing Assessment
  • Guidelines for ELL Instruction: An Introduction to WIDA
  • WIDA: Standards and Levels of English Proficiency
  • WIDA Standards
  • Levels of English Proficiency
  • WIDA: MPIs as Guides to Differentiated Instruction
  • Additional Resources from WIDA 2007, 2012
  • An Overview of Instructional Strategies
  • Initial Phase Instruction for Entering and Early Beginning Levels
  • Intermediate Phase Instruction for Beginning and Early Developing Levels
  • Elaboration Phase Instruction for Late Developing, Expanding, and Bridging Levels
  • Common Instructional Strategies Useful to All Students—Including ELLs
  • Summary
  • Explorations
  • Related Readings
  • 6. The Politics of ELL Policy and Programs: What Does It Mean to Be “American”?
  • Immigration and Assimilation: Then and Now
  • Then
  • Now
  • Limitations of This Discussion
  • From Politics to Policy and Programs: A Tower of Babel
  • Terms to Describe Students
  • Terms to Describe Programs and Pedagogies
  • What Does Research Say about Alternative Approaches?
  • A Closing Thought on Professionalism: Who Will You Be Tomorrow?
  • Explorations
  • Related Readings
  • Appendix: Resources for the Classroom Teacher of English Language Learners
  • Books for Classroom Practice
  • Books for Understanding Learners, Parents, and Immigrant Communities
  • Books for Explorations in Linguistics, Literacy, Philosophy, and Psychology
  • Book Chapters for Classroom Practice
  • Journal Articles for Classroom Practice
  • Online Resources
  • Videos
  • Index

← xii | xiii →



In their book, Educating English Language Learners in an Inclusive Environment, Second Edition, Youb Kim and Patricia H. Hinchey have given their teacher educator colleagues, and their teacher education candidates, a great gift—a book that is as respectful of English learners as it is insistent on deep teacher knowledge. They want to promote the development of current and future teachers who view the language and culture that English learners bring to the classroom as resources rather than instructional inconveniences. And they want those teachers to know as much as they can know about language and culture, both in general (how language and culture shape learning) and in particular (the specific affordances of the language and culture that the students in their classrooms bring with them). Why? Because that combination of respect and knowledge will lead to the development of the teaching skills they need to deliver instruction that helps students develop as effective learners in schools in which curriculum is delivered in English.

The book has all the requisite chapters and content—culture, language, literacy, assessment, and pedagogy, and it is organized conveniently and convincingly. We learn first about why we should care about these issues, then about culture and language, and only then do we get to issues that embrace pedagogy explicitly. That’s important and a distinctive characteristic of Kim and Hinchey’s approach. Too many authors of textbooks for teachers move too soon to the practical aspects of teaching (the never-ending quest for relevance no doubt), leaving their readers ← xiii | xiv → knowing something about how but not why to enact certain practices. Their “first things first” commitment in those early chapters on culture and language prepares us for the pedagogical issues by grounding our understanding of teaching and learning in important linguistic and cultural concepts. The genius of the book, however, is not in its content; most books on this topic cover the same issues. Instead, its genius is in the stance the book takes toward its readers. Kim and Hinchey are downright sneaky about the approach they use to engage us in these issues. They entice us into the worlds of culture and language by inviting us to reflect on our own cultural and linguistic experiences, resources, and idiosyncrasies on the way to understanding and appreciating the resources that linguistically diverse students—immigrant or otherwise—will bring to their classrooms. They accomplish this gentle persuasion by sharing many examples from their own experiences—some from their personal experiences as students, others from their experience as teachers, and still others based on stories that their students and student teachers have related to them. But it is these stories that really ground the book. They animate the abstract principles on which the book is based, giving life to ideas such as cultural relevance and the unintended consequences of linguistic ignorance.

A word about the pedagogical underpinnings of the book. There is an interesting tension in the pedagogy advocated for teachers who work with English learners. There is a strong commitment to constructivist principles of teaching, in which pedagogy begins and ends with the resources that students bring to the learning environment. Unearthing and then using what students know and can do as the basis for teaching anything new is a consistent theme in the book. But that commitment is balanced by an advocacy of explicit teaching, especially when it comes to key language and literacy skills and important knowledge of content and language. This is a healthy tension—one that insures that students will always be learning what’s new in relation to what they already know (that always reduces the learning burden) just as surely as it guarantees that teachers will provide all the scaffolding necessary for students to outgrow themselves as learners.

A final comment about the book. It is not the kind of book that students are likely to sell back to campus bookstore at the end of the semester. Instead current and future teachers will keep it and make it a part of their professional libraries—returning to it again and again as they encounter the new students who bring yet a new set of learning challenges—and resources—to the classroom. Both the book and the ideas in it will wear well.

P. David Pearson

Berkeley, California

December 2012

← xiv | xv →


Preface to the Second Edition

Much has changed in the years between the first and second edition of this book, and those changes are reflected in this edition. Perhaps the largest change has been in political climate, which has seen a sharp decline in support for immigration and immigrants. We overview recent political trends in Chapter One; in that chapter, however, we continue to stress that no matter the political climate at a particular moment, educators are bound both morally and legally to help English language learners progress in English proficiency and to grow in academic mastery. The original rationale for this book, then, remains unchanged: to help general classroom teachers with no preparation in working with language learners to develop awareness of basic principles and strategies.

Our original discussion of terminology in Chapter Six remains relevant, but we will note here two relevant changes. First, English language learners or ELLs—the term we employ for reasons outlined in the chapter—are now frequently referred to as English learners, or ELs. The U.S. Department of Education, for example, uses the EL terminology. However, we think it best to use a term reflecting that what students are learning is a language in its multiple productive and receptive forms. English is not a subject mastered through rote memorization of a few rules, and we think it best it not be linguistically confused with other subjects. The second change is that popular terminology has been shifting from Latino/a ← xv | xvi → to Latinx, a term often considered preferable because of its gender neutrality. We have adopted the new term in this edition.

Other changes reflect our desire to make the text as useful as possible to teachers and to students in teacher education programs. Statistics, laws and other areas have been fully updated, and every chapter now includes suggested readings, all of which have been selected for readability and the potential to deepen readers’ understanding of key points in the chapter. Activities listed under Explorations have also been revised and updated. And, so have the resources listed in the Appendix, intended to provide readers who want to know more about any topic in the text (and we hope that’s every reader!) good places to start furthering their own knowledge about this complicated terrain. We know, after all, that no single text can possibly tell readers everything they need to know, and so we’ve worked hard to point out next steps for individuals accepting responsibility for their continued professional growth.

Overall, we’ve tried hard to help readers take strong first steps along a continuing path to becoming caring and effective ELL educators and embrace the need to know more. We hope readers will find we’ve met that goal.

← xvi | xvii →



I am thankful to my colleagues from Commonwealth Campuses at Penn State who participated in English Language Learning Disciplinary Community retreats. They traveled many miles to State College, Pennsylvania, each summer between 2009 and 2012 to share their wisdom about preparing future teachers to teach English language learners. My students in CI280 have inspired me to become a better teacher every day with their passion for teaching and commitment for improving the lives of others. I am grateful to them all.

I am indebted to numerous teachers. Three most important teachers are P. David Pearson, Meredith McLellan, and my first grade teacher who warmed my hand in her coat pocket while walking me home. I am also indebted to teachers from Spartan Village and Red Cedar Elementary Schools in East Lansing, Michigan. These two schools served as an intellectual reservoir for many emerging teacher education scholars until they closed their doors. Teachers from Eakin Elementary School, especially Beth Asbell, in Nashville, Tennessee, have a special place in my heart because of their knowledge and passion for teaching.

My coauthor, Pat Hinchey, has been a saint. Without her gifted writing and editing skills (and her big heart), this book would have never been completed. My family and friends have been an everlasting source of hope, inspiration, and comfort. I am so grateful to Lisa Sensale and Jennifer Danrige Turner for their ← xvii | xviii → friendship. My daughter, Susan Moon, has helped me remember the power of good teachers (as she always talks about why she loves her teachers). My son, Hoh Moon, and my husband, Jong-Yeul Moon, have shown me the courage to get up and continue moving on toward our goals in life.


XX, 154
ISBN (Softcover)
Publication date
2018 (December)
millennial generation diversity literacy development professionalism culture inclusive education model role
New York, Bern, Berlin, Bruxelles, Oxford, Wien, 2019. XX, 154 pp., 1 b/w ill., 1 table

Biographical notes

Youb Kim (Author) Patricia H. Hinchey (Author)

Youb Kim holds a doctorate from Michigan State University. She is Associate Professor at the University of Northern Colorado. Her research focuses on teacher preparation and socio-emotional development for English language learners and racial/ethnic and linguistic minority students.   Patricia H. Hinchey holds a doctorate from Teachers College, Columbia University. She is Professor Emerita at Penn State and Fellow at the National Education Policy Center. She is author, co-author, editor or co-editor of numerous books and has published many journal articles on multiple topics.


Title: Educating English Language Learners in an Inclusive Environment
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176 pages