GACE ESOL Ultimate Guide2019-12-09T19:26:51+00:00

GACE ESOL: Ultimate Guide and Practice Test

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GACE ESOL Test Overview

Quick Facts

Test I

Test II

GACE ESOL Quick Facts

The GACE English to Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) assessment measures the professional knowledge of prospective ESOL teachers in Georgia.

Format:

You can take either test (Test I or Test II) individually or take both in a single session.

This test includes listening items; a headset will be provided for you.

Cost:

$193

Scoring:

Here are the passing score levels:

  • 220-249:  passing at the induction level
  • 250:  passing at the professional level

Study time:

In order to feel prepared for the test, plan to spend several weeks preparing. It is helpful to create a schedule for yourself ahead of time by breaking down the test topics into different weeks. This way, you will know you have enough time to study each topic covered on the test.

What test takers wish they would’ve known:

  • Watch for questions that include the words “not” or “except,” which indicates that you need to choose the answer choice that does not apply.
  • Keep an eye on the time and make sure you are able to complete the test in the 4 hour time frame.
  • It is better to guess on a question you don’t know the answer to than to leave it unanswered.

Information and screenshots obtained from the ETS website: https://gace.ets.org/prepare/materials/619

Test I

Overview

Test I has 80 questions.

There are three subareas:

  • Language (40%)
  • Culture (30%)
  • Professionalism (30%)

Test I: Language

Overview

Language questions account for 40% of Test I.

This subarea has two objectives:

  • Linguistics and Nature of Language
  • Language Acquisition and Development

So, let’s start with Linguistics and Nature of Language.

Linguistics and Nature of Language

This objective tests your knowledge of linguistics and the nature of language. This includes but is not limited to:

  • Phonology
  • Morphology
  • Language registers
  • L1 acquisition
  • Behaviorism vs. constructivism
  • Word Englishes

Let’s take a look at some concepts that are likely to appear on the test.

Phonology

Phonology describes how sounds (phonemes) work within a language. Understanding and knowing the sounds of a language is a part of phonology.  

An understanding of phonology is essential in order to master more complex parts of language like morphology, syntax, semantics, and pragmatics. Students who are acquiring a second language, phonologically similar to their native language, will have a much easier time, because they will not need to learn as many new sounds.

For example, /r/, /l/, and especially /th/, are hard for students who are learning English, because those sounds are not found in other languages.

Morphology

Morphology is the study of how words are structured. Individual phonemes or sounds do not have meanings, but morphemes, the smallest chunk of a word, do have meaning.  

For example, in the word cats, cat is the free morpheme (stands alone) and s is the bound morpheme since s by itself only makes the word plural.

Teaching morphology to ELLs not only helps with content vocabulary, but also reading (decoding new words), speaking, and writing.

Language Registers

The English language has five language registers, or styles of language. The register depends on the audience and situation. It is important that ELLs understand each, so they are able to participate in academic and social conversations. The language registers are:

  • Frozen (static)– Language that is unchanged no matter the context (Pledge of Allegiance, Lord’s Prayer, etc.)
  • Formal/Academic– Language for instruction, interviews, lessons, and public speaking
  • Consultative– Asking for assistance in some way (speaking to a supervisor, teacher, doctor, etc.)
  • Casual (informal)– Social conversation between friends (teachers should accept first drafts of writing in the casual register so that students can more easily get the information out)
  • Intimate– Conversation not meant for the public (conversation between immediate family members)

Teachers can help ELLs understand and use the different registers by explicitly modeling for them, as well as providing many opportunities for different types of discourse throughout the day. For example, teachers can lead students in small group to demonstrate the formal register, recite the Pledge of Allegiance to demonstrate the frozen register, have students ask questions to practice the consultative register, and allow group work and encourage conversation at lunch/recess to support learning the casual register.

Stages of L1 Acquisition

L1 refers to a first or native language. Children are born with the ability to acquire language. L1 acquisition happens in four stages:

  • Babbling (6-8 months)- Imitates sounds of family members and gradually drops the sounds that are not reinforced.
  • One-word stage or holophrastic stage (9-18 months)– Children begin to form recognizable sounds/words.
  • Two-word stage (18-24 months)- Children begin to develop phrases with multiple words. For example, a child might point to a car and say, “dada car.”
  • Telegraphic or multi-word stage (24-30 months)- Children begin to form complete sentences. At this stage, children’s words have more meaning and purpose than simply labeling objects.  

Behaviorism versus Constructivism

  • Behaviorism– A philosophy based on behavior that includes the way organisms act, think, and feel. Basically, behavior can be predicted and controlled. In education, this approach supports changing behavior through rewarding desired behaviors.
  • Constructivism– A philosophy that investigates how humans create meaningful experiences. For teachers, this approach encourages active engagement such as discussion, writing, problem solving, and other “active” strategies for instruction.

In terms of L1 and L2 acquisition, these theories can both be used but look different in the classroom.  

A typical behaviorist strategy can be a teacher-led vocabulary lesson where the teacher explains the vocabulary words, phrases, and how each word is used in a sentence. Another strategy can be a teacher-led activity where students repeat vocabulary in a drill-like format. As students master one drill, they begin the next one. This can be beneficial to students who are learning vocabulary.

In contrast, the constructivist approach is more project based (including research); students work in collaborative groups rather than receiving direct instruction; overall, the teacher’s main focus is on each student’s interests and learning style. This philosophy can also be beneficial for students who are acquiring language, because students are given the opportunity to use the language in multiple ways, and the way they are learning the information is probably more specific to their interest/level.  

World Englishes

World Englishes refers to all of the varying forms of English spoken around the world. Standard English is a native speaker model which may never be attainable for many ELLs, so recent research says it might be unrealistic to use the standard English model for ELLs who are acquiring the language.  

The current recommendation is that ESL teachers should consider all varieties of English in a balanced approach to ESL instruction, so that students are better prepared for the global world. Using a balanced approach also shows students that their variation of English is valued.

Language Acquisition and Development

This objective tests your knowledge of understanding the nature of language acquisition and development for ELLs. This includes but is not limited to:

  • code switching
  • L1 interference
  • L1 literacy
  • assimilation
  • acculturation

Take a look at some concepts that may pop up on the test.

Code Switching

When a speaker uses two or more languages, or language varieties, in the same context during a single conversation, it is referred to as code switching. Speakers of multiple languages will often do this when speaking with one another.

Here’s an example. Let’s say a native Spanish speaking bilingual student responds to a teacher and says, “I’m going to stay with my abuela this weekend.” The student is substituting the Spanish word for “grandma” in a sentence that is mostly English.

L1 Interference

L1 interference refers to how an ELL’s native language (L1) interferes with the learning/usage of a second language (L2). The interference can be positive (helpful) or negative (causes mistakes). The interference typically happens when grammar structures are different from language to language.

L1 Literacy

We know that children who demonstrate a solid understanding of the alphabet and phonological awareness are more likely to become better readers and writers.  

Typically, students who have strong reading and writing skills in their native language, or L1, will be able to transfer those skills to a second language, or L2.

ESL teachers should use L1 literacy as a predictor to L2 strengths and weaknesses, because, more often than not, the same patterns of strengths and weaknesses are found in the second language.

Assimilation

Cultural assimilation refers to any person/student who moves to a new country and begins to replace their native culture with the values/beliefs of the new culture.  

Research shows that assimilation is not as beneficial for students as acculturation due to the fact that it is important for students to maintain their native culture and beliefs while still adjusting, and potentially adopting, some norms of their new culture.

Acculturation

Acculturation occurs when students adopt customs and values from their new culture, but also maintain native customs and cultural practices

Research has shown that when acculturation is encouraged over assimilation, ELLs are much more successful. It is important that their native values and customs are seen as valuable tools to aid in L2 (second language) acquisition.

And that’s some basic info about the Language subarea.

Now, let’s look at a few practice questions to see how these concepts might actually appear on the real test.

Test I: Culture

Overview

Culture questions account for 30% of Test I.

This subarea has one objective:

  • Home Culture and Classroom Diversity

So, let’s talk about that one objective.

Home Culture and Classroom Diversity

This objective tests your knowledge of the roles of home culture and classroom diversity. This includes but is not limited to:

  • the benefits of a culturally diverse classroom
  • stereotyping
  • subcultures

Let’s take a look at some concepts that are likely to appear on the test.

Cultural Diversity in the Classroom

A culturally diverse classroom benefits all students in a variety of ways. Students who are educated in culturally diverse classrooms are:

  • more empathetic and less prejudiced
  • more creative
  • typically higher achievers than students who are not exposed to other cultures
  • better prepared to work in a global economy
  • more confident

Teachers can encourage cultural diversity in their classrooms by:

  • expressing interest in the various backgrounds of students and allowing students to share different things about their culture.
  • setting norms in your classroom that require respect toward everyone
  • intentionally planning lessons that incorporate a wide variety of cultures and provide multiple points of view. This includes culturally diverse books, research topics, discussion points, and media.
  • finding ways to involve the community in your classroom and opportunities for your students to go into the community.

Stereotyping

Stereotyping in the classroom occurs when a teacher overgeneralizes about a specific group of students. For example, in a classroom of ten Spanish speaking students, the students might be from several different cultures. They could be from Mexico, Spain, Panama, El Salvador, etc. It is important for teachers to remember that each country has very different cultures; it would be insensitive to the students to assume that they have a lot in common regarding their culture.

If ELLs are stereotyped in their ESL classroom, it can compromise their success, because the ELL might:

  • have misconceptions that go undetected by the teacher.
  • feel misrepresented.
  • feel unimportant.
  • feel a lack of self-esteem.
  • not be able to build a positive relationship with the teacher.

Subcultures

Subcultures are groups of people who share values and interests including similar styles and/or hobbies. Subcultures can also be based on nationalities, language, music preference, etc. Subcultures can influence behavior, achievement, and the development of students.

It is important that teachers understand the subcultures in their classroom, so they can maintain control of their classroom, as well as embrace and understand students who identify with each subculture. When students feel alienated by a subculture they identify with, or have conflict with another subculture in the classroom, achievement and self-confidence can decrease. It is very important that teachers be aware of the different groups of students he/she has in the classroom.

And that’s some basic info about the Culture subarea.

Now, let’s look at a few practice questions to see how these concepts might actually appear on the real test.

Test I: Professionalism

Overview

Professionalism questions account for 30% of Test I.

This subarea has one objective:

  • Professional Development and Role of ESOL Teacher

So, let’s talk about that one objective.

Professional Development and Role of ESOL Teacher

This objective tests your knowledge of the importance of professional development and the role of the ESOL teacher. This includes but is not limited to:

  • Title III
  • The Equal Education Opportunities Act
  • WIDA®

Take a look at some concepts that may pop up on the test.

Title III

Title III is a section of the No Child Left Behind Act that designates specific funds for English language acquisition programs. Title III grant money helps ELLs by providing:

  • effective language instruction programs
  • quality professional development to ESOL teachers
  • engagement opportunities for parents, families, and the community

 

Equal Education Opportunities Act

The Equal Educational Opportunities Act or EEOA of 1974 prohibits discrimination against faculty, staff, and students. This includes racial segregation of students, and it requires school districts to take steps to overcome anything that keeps students from participating equally.

The main impact this piece of legislation has on ELLs is that it requires school districts to help non English speaking students learn how to speak English. The term “bilingual education” is not used in the act specifically; however, Congress has interpreted the EEOA to mean that districts must provide these services to ELLs.

WIDA®

WIDA®, or World-class Instructional Design and Assessment, “provides language development resources to those who support academic success of multilingual learners” (https://wida.wisc.edu).

WIDA® is a fantastic resource for ESOL teachers, because they provide high-quality standards, assessments, research-based practices, and professional development for teachers across the world.  

And that’s some basic info about the Professionalism subarea.

Now, let’s look at a few practice questions to see how these concepts might actually appear on the real test.

Test II

Overview

Test II has 80 questions.

There is one subarea:

  • Planning, Implementing, and Managing Classroom Instruction and Assessment (100%)

Test II: Planning, Implementing, and Managing Classroom Instruction and Assessment

Overview

This subarea has four objectives:

  • Instructional Theories and Methodologies
  • Teaching Techniques and Instructional Materials
  • Classroom Management and Student Learning
  • Assessments

So, let’s start with Instructional Theories and Methodologies.

Instructional Theories and Methodologies

This objective tests your knowledge of instructional theories and methodologies for teaching English language learners. This includes but is not limited to:

  • pull-out vs. push-in support
  • monitor hypothesis
  • input hypothesis
  • using dictionaries

Let’s take a look at some concepts that are likely to appear on the test.

Pull-Out versus Push-In

Students who receive additional instructional support can receive:

  • Pull-out instruction– students are removed from the general education classroom and spend time in small groups. They receive explicit instruction that is typically a few grade levels below their peers. This instructional method is typically used for students who lack the foundational skills necessary to be successful with their grade level peers in the general education classroom.  
  • Push-in instruction– students remain in the general education classroom with their peers and a specialist “pushes in” to the classroom. The specialist usually supports the general education teacher by working in small groups within the classroom and helping the targeted students by modeling, assisting with note taking, rephrasing statements from the teacher, reading questions aloud, etc. Push-in instruction is typically offered for students who need a little extra support but have the foundational skills necessary to be successful at their grade level.  

Students have a right to work in the least restrictive environment. A teacher’s goal should be to keep a student with his/her peers whenever possible. When deciding between pull-out or push-in instruction, consider the skills the student has. If a student needs few additional supports or scaffolding (and when provided that can work on grade level with his/her peers), then push-in instruction is appropriate. If a student is reading 2+ years below grade level, or does not have foundational math skills within 1-2 years of his/her grade level, pull-out instruction may be more appropriate until that student gains the skills necessary to participate in grade level instruction with his/her peers.

Monitor Hypothesis

Linguist Stephen Krashen proposed that language learners must monitor their communication and self-correct minor errors based on what they know about the language. According to Krashen, ESOL teachers should focus foremost on acquisition, have a limited focus on grammar, and provide plenty of time for students to focus on forming the language.

Here’s an example of a student monitoring their learning:

Student: “I goed to school… I mean, I went to school.”

In the example, the student self-corrected by monitoring his/herself.  

Input Hypothesis

Linguist Stephen Krashen also proposed a concept he called the input hypothesis. The input hypothesis is the idea that the only way to acquire a language is to receive instruction (input) that is just beyond a comfortable level, but not beyond understanding. ELLs must also learn in the best environment for input to work, meaning that they need to have as little stress as possible and also be motivated to learn.

Using Dictionaries

Dictionary usage is a very important skill for all students, but especially ELLs.  When teaching students how to effectively use dictionaries, teachers should:

  1. Choose an appropriate dictionary. It is helpful if the dictionary has pictures and simplified vocabulary.
  2. Explain the importance of the dictionary and how it can be a useful tool.
  3. Allow students to explore the dictionary. This allows students to look for patterns.
  4. Explain the dictionary goes by the alphabet.
  5. Prompt students to read the definition and discuss any multiple-meaning words.
  6. Read with students. Choose books that contain vocabulary words slightly above students’ levels; when they stumble on a word, first prompt the student to use context clues, then prompt them to use a dictionary to find the meaning of the word.

Teaching Techniques and Instructional Materials

This objective tests your knowledge of using a variety of teaching techniques and instructional materials with ELLs. This includes but is not limited to:

  • activating prior knowledge
  • using authentic language
  • using realia

Here are some topics that will more than likely be on the test.

Activating Prior Knowledge

Students have so much to offer to the classroom; it is important that teachers understand what prior knowledge students have and allow them to contribute to the class.

Let’s look at some activities that tap into prior knowledge:

  • Image brainstorm- project an image, and ask students to tell you everything they can about the image. Choose a picture that makes sense to them but also allows you to connect your content.
  • K-W-L chart– when beginning a new unit, allow the class to create a KWL chart that details what they already know about a topic, what they want to know, and then (after instruction) what they learned.
  • Circle map- draw a large circle on a whiteboard or piece of poster paper. Write the topic in the middle and circle it. Allow students to write words or phrases that describe what they already know. For example, if you are about to study the solar system, the teacher will write “Solar System” in the center of the circle; students may write “sun,” “planets,” “moon,” “orbit,” “stars,” “galaxy,” etc.

Authentic Language

Authentic language and materials provide real-life examples of how language is used in everyday situations, which could vary slightly from formal and grammatically correct language. Using authentic language in ESOL instruction is very important, because it can provide:

  • information about the culture and the perspective of that culture on a specific topic or event
  • a source of input language that ELLs need for language acquisition

Here are some examples of authentic language texts:

  • a blog post written in the targeted language
  • news interview clip
  • recorded conversation

Be sure that the text or clip is not too lengthy, so the ELLs are not overwhelmed.

Realia

Realia are real-life objects that teachers use to help students understand other cultures and real-life situations. Realia is a very important tool to use when teaching ELLs, because it provides a context and concrete object to attach new vocabulary and ideas to. Examples of realia include:

  • brochures
  • menus
  • tickets and receipts
  • documents
  • magazine ads
  • food packages

Classroom Management and Student Learning

This objective tests your knowledge of the connection between classroom management and student learning. This includes but is not limited to:

  • providing feedback to students
  • creating a print-rich classroom
  • promoting listening and speaking skills

Take a look at some concepts that are likely to appear on the test.

Providing Feedback to Students

Feedback is an essential part of the learning process that teachers must prioritize. Feedback provided to students should be:

  • educative in nature
  • given in a timely manner
  • sensitive to the student’s individual needs
  • referencing a specific skill or knowledge
  • one-on-one
  • given verbally, non-verbally, or written

It is also beneficial for teachers to:

  • allow student feedback
  • concentrate on one ability
  • return written feedback at the beginning of class
  • use a notebook that details feedback
  • teach students how to give feedback to one another

Creating a Print-Rich Classroom

A print-rich classroom provides and encourages instructional cues that mirror learning goals and targets. Examples of print for classrooms include:

  • center labels
  • signs
  • murals
  • pictures
  • word walls
  • bulletin boards that display student work
  • reading and writing cues

A print-rich environment serves as a foundation for literacy development in ELLs. ELLs need many opportunities to read material that is relevant and should see print at every turn in their classroom. Benefits of a print-rich classroom include:

  • provides visual cues for students
  • helps students recognize and give meaning to vocabulary
  • creates a sense of ownership for students
  • helps students develop a sense of responsibility

Promoting Listening and Speaking Skills

ELLs (and all students) can listen to and discuss more complex topics and ideas than they can read or write about.  

Let’s look at some strategies to promote listening and speaking skills:

  • Reader’s Theater- students practice reading and rereading a script; then, they have to perform their lines.
  • Presentations– students must speak to an audience; students who are listening are required to take notes over certain portions of the presentation.
  • Listening stations– students listen to a recording of a complex text and then answer questions about the text.
  • Meaningful class discussion- teachers guide students through meaningful class discussion and provide specific question and response stems to scaffold that discussion.

Assessments

This objective tests your knowledge of the use of assessments with ELLs. This includes but is not limited to:

  • formal vs. informal assessments
  • formative vs. summative assessments
  • self-assessment

Let’s take a look at some concepts that are likely to appear on the test.

Formal (summative) versus Informal (formative) Assessments

Formal and informal assessments are important tools in the learning process, but each are appropriate in different situations.

Formal assessments (summative assessments) should be given after a unit of study to assess mastery of a specific learning goal, or a group of learning goals. Formal or summative assessments include:

  • standardized tests
  • unit tests
  • semester exams
  • comprehensive projects

Formal assessments should:

  • take place in a structured testing environment
  • be used as data points and grades

Informal (formative) assessments should be given throughout the learning process but before any formal assessment takes place. Teachers should use informal, or formative, assessments as an indicator of how to adjust instruction. Informal assessments include:

  • non-standardized tests
  • interviews and observations
  • exit tickets
  • quick checks for learning
  • discussion questions  

Informal, or formative, assessment should:

  • take place in a normal classroom environment
  • not be used as data points for overall mastery or grades
  • take place multiple times before a formal, or summative, assessment.

Self-Assessment

Self-assessment involves students evaluating their own work throughout the learning process. This is an important tool for ESOL teachers, because it helps students:

  • set goals
  • edit their own work
  • decide where to focus attention during learning
  • recognize their strengths and weaknesses

For example, a teacher might have students keep a data folder that details goals, reflections, and rubrics so that students have a specific goal to work towards.

And that’s some basic info about the Planning, Implementing, and Managing Classroom Instruction and Assessment subarea.

Now, let’s look at a few practice questions to see how these concepts might actually appear on the real test.

Language Practice Test

Question 1

Mr. Levitt notices that one of his English language learner students is adapting his speech depending on the social situation. The student best demonstrates an awareness of:

  1. language register.
  2. language function.
  3. morphology.
  4. phonology.

Correct answer: 1. A language register is the adaptation of one’s speech to fit certain social situations.

Question 2

A teacher is perplexed by a recurring syllable appearing within words that the ESOL student has included in his composition. The student explains that in his language there are ways to express affect by adding in this syllable. This is an example of:

  1. cognates.
  2. semantic drift.
  3. language interference.
  4. syntax.

Correct answer: 3. This is the correct answer. Information that a student uses from his first language that does not exist in the second language is an example of interference; when the information does exist and it is helpful to the student to use it, then it is called ‘transfer.’

Question 3

Students with home languages that derive from Latin will have an easier time learning the English counterparts of science vocabulary than students with Germanic home languages because:

  1. the syntactic elements are similar.
  2. the lexical items are similar.
  3. the discourse features are similar.
  4. the sound systems are similar.

Correct answer: 2. This is the only answer choice that relates to the meaning or definition of words. Lexical pertains to the subject of vocabulary given in the question.

Question 4

The past tense marker in English is -ed. Changing verbs from present to past tense simply requires adding this suffix. This is an example of (Select all that apply)

  1. English grammar.
  2. English morphology.
  3. English syntax.

Correct answer: 1 and 2English syntax refers to sentence structure and does not apply in this case.

Question 5

The study of existing sounds in a particular language is called?

  1. Phonetics
  2. Morphology
  3. Phonology
  4. Phonics

Correct answer: 3. Phonology refers to the study of sounds that exist in a language.

Question 6

Mrs. Summerville is teaching a unit on synonyms and antonyms. Her instructional activities would best cover what concept?

  1. Conventions of English
  2. Semantics
  3. Syntax
  4. Phonology

Correct answer: 2. The study of word meanings is a part of semantics. This is the most specific answer choice.

Question 7

Which of the following best describes children’s language development at birth?

  1. Children are born without a facility for language acquisition or processing and learn language through social interaction
  2. Children are born with a simple and complex understanding of syntactic rules
  3. Children are born without knowledge of language and learn through parental instruction
  4. Children are born with a natural predisposition for learning language and language rules

Correct answer: 4. According to language acquisition theory, children are born with a “language acquisition device.” This device helps their language development. Language acquisition theory also states that children unconsciously learn normal social interaction without the need of structured vocabulary teaching or grammatical structures.

Question 8

Mrs. Holland breaks her ESOL class into small groups and provides each group a list of words about animals at the zoo. She instructs each group to discuss the words and decide what each word has, or does not have, in common with the other words. Which of the following is this activity most likely to promote?

  1. Vocabulary about animals
  2. Vocabulary about classroom items
  3. Understanding of various cultural backgrounds
  4. Understanding of classroom procedures

Correct answer: 1. This is the correct answer as the students will be discussing various animals and their characteristics.

Question 9

Henry is an English language learner and has mastered the English language. He also performs well academically and participates in various extracurricular activities. He has many English-speaking friends; however, he continues to speak his primary language with his family and friends from his home country. Also, Henry is actively involved in community events that celebrate his heritage and home culture. Henry’s behavior is most indicative of which of the following?

  1. Assimilation
  2. Enculturation
  3. Deculturalization
  4. Acculturation

Correct answer: 4. Acculturation−the adoption of the behavior patterns of the surrounding culture. This is what Henry is doing. He is not replacing his own culture but incorporating American culture while maintaining his primary heritage and culture.

Question 10

A middle school class includes many ELL students. Marie, an ELL student, avoids contact with other members of her cultural group and tries to emulate the behavior of U.S.-born classmates; Arnold, another ELL student, takes great pride in his heritage and is condescending of other cultural heritages; Bobby, another ELL student, has friends from a variety of cultural groups. Which of the following concepts about culture adaption to these students best exemplify?

  1. How quickly individuals assimilate into a culture is directly related to how much contact they have with the culture
  2. Cultural identity levels can vary among individuals who live in a culture different from their primary cultures
  3. Academic success is dependent upon positive attitudes towards the main culture of the school
  4. Some cultures retain a stronger cultural identity than others

Correct answer: 2. This is the best option as it is the most accurate of the given options.

Culture Practice Test

Question 1

The students’ understanding of values, ethics, and relationships is greatly influenced by their culture and society. This is important to remember in working with English language learners because:

  1. their native cultures might place different emphases on values, ethics, and relationships than the American culture.
  2. their ability to grasp basic mathematical concepts might be complicated by cultural influences.
  3. their ELL learning styles will be vastly different due to differences in cultural backgrounds.
  4. their family relationships might have different priorities than that of the American culture.

Correct answer: 1. This is the most important thing to remember because students’ behavior and thought processes can be shaped by the different emphases on values. To adequately communicate and teach the ELL students, these differences need to be considered in communication.

Question 2

Along with promoting English proficiency among her students, Mrs. Armstrong strives to help her English language learners express their feelings and consider other students’ viewpoints. Of the following, what is the greatest benefit of this practice?

  1. Helping students understand English culture
  2. Allowing students to gain greater proficiency in English
  3. Encouraging high expectations in the students’ academic achievements
  4. Reducing conflicts among students with different backgrounds

Correct answer: 4. Helping students express their feelings and understand the viewpoints of others will help reduce conflicts among students of different cultures as misunderstandings are more likely to be prevented.

Question 3

The greatest benefit to creating a multicultural and multilingual classroom environment is to:

  1. allow each student to understand the benefits of each culture.
  2. allow each student to learn about the differences of each culture.
  3. create a classroom environment that promotes respect for different cultures.
  4. create a classroom environment that adopts aspects from various cultures.

Correct answer: 3. It is a high priority for students in the classroom to respect different cultures. Among the answer choices, this is the highest priority. While it is important to understand and learn about different cultures, it is not useful unless the students develop a respect for the cultures they learn about. It is not necessary for students to adopt aspects of different cultures.

Question 4

Which of the following groups of students are more prone to feel self-conscious around their peers and seek the acceptance of them?

  1. Seventh-grade students
  2. First-grade students
  3. Twelfth-grade students
  4. Third-grade students

Correct answer: 1. This is the correct answer. During the middle school years, children are going through many physical changes. This often leads students to be self-conscious about themselves as they think others are noticing the awkwardness they are experiencing.

Question 5

Mrs. Moore is a principal who is scheduled to meet with an English language learner and his parents after school. She asked the Spanish teacher to sit in on the meeting to serve as a translator between the principal and the parents. Which of the following is the greatest benefit to using the first language of the parents in the meeting?

  1. Increase family involvement in their child’s academic learning
  2. Demonstrate cultural sensitivity
  3. Establish safeguards to prevent a lawsuit or legal action
  4. Allow the Spanish teacher to build a relationship with the parents

Correct answer: 1. This is the greatest benefit as it should be the goal to increase family involvement in the child’s academic learning. By establishing a relationship with the parents and making them feel comfortable by using their primary language, the school increases the likelihood of parental involvement.

Question 6

Mr. Hernandez is planning an after-school activity for students and parents. He contacts the parents of his English language learner students to discuss the activity and asks for their input in the planning. Mr. Hernandez’s actions best reflect his awareness that:

  1. students of ELL families are more likely to develop English proficiency if their families are involved in community activities.
  2. the teacher-parent conversation provides a proper grammar model for ELL students to develop their English proficiency.
  3. families of ELL students are more likely to promote academic studies if they are familiar with the content being taught.
  4. families of ELL students who have a positive opinion about school and their child’s learning are more likely to develop English proficiency.

Correct answer: 4. This is the best answer as families of ELL students are more likely to be more involved and implement English in the home if they have positive attitudes towards the children’s school.

Question 7

An ESOL teacher should always encourage the students to share information about school with their parents and use their native language at home. The greatest benefit to this activity is:

  1. it validates the parental role.
  2. it does not limit the communication between the parent and child regarding academic progress.
  3. it promotes the parents’ knowledge of the child’s school system.
  4. it allows the teacher to have more efficient interaction with the parent.

Correct answer: 2. Parents and students need to communicate about school and by requiring the students and parents to speak in English can limit that interaction. It is more important for students and parents to communicate about schoolwork and school activities than for students to use English in the home. Communication between students and parents is the highest priority among the answer choices.

Question 8

Mr. Rockwell has many English language learners in his class. He understands different students will have different learning styles. Which of the following would be the best approach for Mr. Rockwell to use to maximize classroom learning among his students?

  1. Implement auditory classroom activities to promote language retention among students
  2. Implement visual classroom activities to promote literacy proficiency among students
  3. Implement kinesthetic classroom activities to promote writing proficiency among students
  4. Implement various activities to accommodate the various learning styles

Correct answer: 4. This is the best answer option as it accounts for many styles of learning and not just one type.

Question 9

Which of the following terms describes a cultural group within a larger culture?

  1. postculture
  2. reculture
  3. semiculture
  4. subculture

Correct answer: 4. A subculture is a cultural group within a larger culture, often times having its own values, norms, and standards. A basic knowledge of prefixes can also help you correctly answer this question. “Sub” means secondary or under.

Question 10

Mrs. Wakeland has a diverse group of students representing various cultures in her classroom. Her goal is to promote and foster an appreciation of cultural diversity so her students have a safe and welcoming environment in which to learn. Which of the following actions does not support Mrs. Wakeland’s goal?

  1. Group students with similar cultures together for cooperative learning
  2. Express interest in each student’s unique culture
  3. Plan and implement lessons about various cultures
  4. Encourage students to interact with everyone

Correct answer: 1. In order to encourage cultural acceptance, Mrs. Wakeland should not just group students from the same culture together for cooperative learning. Mrs. Wakeland should create heterogeneous groups with students from various cultures. This way, students can begin to learn about one another. The other answer choices are great ways to promote acceptance of cultural diversity.

Professionalism Practice Test

Question 1

What is the best way an ESOL teacher could advocate for ESOL students to the school’s staff and faculty? The teacher could provide information about the:

  1. strategies for assessing students and the need for simplifying the use of complex phrasing, idiomatic expressions, and cultural references.
  2. different cultural viewpoints about education.
  3. proper pronunciation of culturally sensitive words.
  4. different learning styles of the students.

Correct answer: 1. Helping the school’s staff and faculty better understand assessment strategies, and how to simplify the more difficult aspects of the English language, will allow them to better address the academic needs of the ESOL students.

Question 2

An ESOL teacher has been approached by many parents about the district’s policy for students receiving ESOL services. The parents are not pleased with the policy and would like adjustments made. Which of the following actions best allows the ESOL teacher to serve as an advocate for ELL students and their families?

  1. Show the parents the assessment tools used to make ESOL program decisions and clarify for them the rationale for the district’s ESOL entry and exit policies
  2. Organize the concerned parents and offer to be the spokesperson for the group in any meetings and public forums
  3. Explain to the parents the options for making their concerns known to policymakers and help them contact the appropriate policymakers
  4. Research possible avenues to changing or waiving the district’s ESOL entry and exit policies and pursue those avenues on behalf of the parents

Correct answer: 3. The best option would be to educate the parents on the best way to contact the policymakers. Instead of becoming directly involved in the process, thus creating a conflict of interest between the teacher and the school district, the teacher can place into contact the stakeholders and the policymakers and promote a positive dialogue between the two parties.

Question 3

Of the following, which would be the most beneficial staff development program adjustment to promote the needs of English language learners in a school?

  1. Emphasize innovative literary strategies to promote English proficiency
  2. Extend participation in the program to the entire school, not just the ESOL staff
  3. Allow a guest-speaker to address the differences between the cultures that the students are familiar with and the culture of the English language.
  4. Promote a second language development among the ESOL staff

Correct answer: 2. By extending participation to the whole school, the ESOL department allows all teachers to better address the needs of the ELL students. The staff development program should already have important informational activities planned, so other adjustments would have a limited impact on the students as only a portion of the staff would be exposed to the other adjustments.

Question 4

Staff members at a rural school with a growing ELL population are developing an ESOL program to meet the needs of students. Which of the following questions can best ensure their program is in compliance with Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964?

  1. Does the ESOL program develop English language proficiency while providing English language learners with equal opportunities to participate in the district’s educational program?
  2. Does the ESOL program ensure that English language learners have access to the same educational resources?
  3. Does the ESOL program establish specific English language and academic educational standards for English language learners in the district and measure students’ achievement of these standards?
  4. Does the ESOL program ensure that English language learners’ educational progress is assessed in the same manner and frequency as students in the district who are native speakers of English?

Correct answer: 1. This is the correct answer.

Question 5

An ESOL teacher has created a list of books he would like to read to promote his professional development. His school does not have a budget for purchasing materials for professional development and he cannot find the books in the school or local library. Which of the following would be the best approach for the teacher to find the books?

  1. Apply for a grant to purchase the books
  2. Request the books directly from the publisher, explaining the situation and his desire for professional growth
  3. Locate a university that can collaborate with the local library for an interlibrary loan
  4. Use the funds for classroom materials to purchase the books

Correct answer: 3. The best option would be to use existing resources to get the books. This is the most monetarily efficient and plausible option.

Question 6

Mrs. Lewis has an ELL student who is having difficulty pronouncing certain consonants. She is trying to determine if the student’s primary language is contributing to the difficulty in pronunciation. Which of the following strategies would likely be most effective in addressing Mrs. Lewis’s goal?

  1. Look through literature of the student’s primary language to see if the consonants in question appear
  2. Have the student recite the primary language alphabet
  3. Ask a bilingual teacher of the student’s primary language whether the consonants in question exist in the student’s primary language
  4. Look for information about the student’s primary language in a general linguistics textbook

Correct answer: 3. The best strategy would be to collaborate with a bilingual teacher of the student’s primary language. This would allow Mrs. Lewis to talk with the other teacher about the consonants in question and ask for strategies to help promote the ELL’s English skills.

Question 7

Which of the following programs partially funds ESOL programs?

  1. Title II
  2. Title III
  3. Title IV
  4. Title V

Correct answer: 2. Title III provides states with funds to supplement language programs. The states distribute funds to districts based on the number of English language learners served.

Question 8

Which of the following is not a professional organization or publication solely dedicated to supporting ESOL education?

  1. Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL)
  2. World-Class Instructional Design and Assessment (WIDA)
  3. National Association for Bilingual Education (NABE)
  4. National Education Association (NEA)

Correct answer: 4. The National Education Association (NEA) is a labor union and professional interest group.

Question 9

The statute that prohibits states from denying students a fair education due to language barriers is the

  1. Equal Educational Opportunities Act
  2. Equal Education Act
  3. Fair and Equal Education Act
  4. Fair Opportunities Act

Correct answer: 1. The Equal Educational Opportunities Act of 1974 ensures that English learners receive equal educational opportunities regardless of their ability to speak English.

Question 10

What is one way that ESOL teachers can advocate for English learners?

  1. Keep ESOL instruction knowledge to themselves
  2. Understand the rights of English learners
  3. Plan and implement a lesson on the origin of the English language
  4. Attend a professional development workshop on assessment design

Correct answer: 2. A teacher who understands the rights (both legally and ethically) of English learners can more effectively advocate for them.

Planning, Implementing, and Managing Classroom Instruction and Assessment Practice Test

Question 1

Mrs. Brunson notices that many of her English language learner students understand the beginning of what she says but become lost as she progresses in her lectures. She decides it will be helpful to pause as she speaks. What is the most appropriate time to pause during her instruction?

  1. After every third word
  2. After every difficult word
  3. After every sentence
  4. After every complete thought

Correct answer: 4. This is the best choice. Once a thought is complete, a pause allows the listeners to process the information in its entirety to promote the ability to use context clues and the main ideas to define the words.

Question 2

Mr. Martin is planning an instructional unit and wants to adjust the lesson to meet the needs of the English language learners in his class. Each student has a varying level of English proficiency. What is the best strategy to adjust the instructional unit to meet the students’ needs?

  1. Allow the ELL students to work together during group activities to promote English proficiency
  2. Adjust the content to make the presentations and homework assignments simpler to accommodate the varying language proficiencies
  3. Make dictionaries accessible to the students and allow for additional time to complete the assignments while other students work independently
  4. Send the ELL students to the resource room for supplemental instruction during the presentations

Correct answer: 3. By allowing students a dictionary and additional time, the teacher is adjusting instruction to meet the needs of the ELL students while promoting English proficiency and grade-level appropriate content.

Question 3

English language learners benefit most from comprehensive reading instruction rather than learning aspects of reading in isolation. Which of the following is an example of comprehensive instruction?

  1. A vocabulary worksheet
  2. An instructional video about an instructional activity
  3. Continuing a reading lesson with a writing activity
  4. Direct instruction by the teacher

Correct answer: 3. This is a comprehensive instructional activity, because it combines multiple learning activities.

Question 4

Mr. Duke wants to break up his class into small groups for a discussion after a multimedia presentation. Mr. Duke has multiple English language learners in his class. Which of the following is the most important criteria for placing English language learners into groups?

  1. Make sure the English language learners are placed in the same group so they are comfortable speaking and sharing ideas
  2. Make sure the English language learners are placed into various groups to promote vocabulary development
  3. Create homogeneous groups of similar academic abilities
  4. Create heterogeneous groups of similar academic abilities

Correct answer: 2. This is the best option as it will provide a wider exposure to new vocabulary.

Question 5

A school has a growing population of older beginning-level English language learners. Many of the students come from migrant families and have had an interrupted academic career resulting in limited language skills both in English and their primary language. The students spend a part of their day working with the bilingual teacher to receive primary language instruction. Which of the following ways could the ESOL teacher use to best promote the students’ English language and literacy development?

  1. Develop activities that allow the students to work together to reinforce their primary-language literacy skills
  2. Create lessons for these students that focus on developing their literacy skills in English that are completed individually
  3. Design lessons that primarily focus on the development of these students’ oral language skills in English
  4. Work with the bilingual teacher to design literacy units that build on these students’ current language skills and past experiences

Correct answer: 4. This is the best option as the students can build upon their primary language as well as English. By working together to build up both of their languages, the students are more likely to adopt and implement the new knowledge.

Question 6

In order to make speech into a comprehensible input for students, the ESOL teacher may:

I. slow down the rate of delivery.

II. show pictures that correspond to the message.

III. make gestures to clarify certain actions mentioned.

  1. I, II, and III
  2. II and III
  3. I and III
  4. I and II

Correct answer: 1. All three strategies can be used to help ELL students better understand the meanings of words.

Question 7

Mr. Rodriguez is teaching an instructional unit on supply and demand to his ELL students. He gives each student the choice of reading an article about supply and demand and filling out a worksheet or researching how a favorite video game is made and marketed. He notices an overwhelming majority of the students choose to do the research activity. Which of the following is the most likely reason the students chose this activity?

  1. There is no real way to grade the activity
  2. The activity has a real and applicable purpose to their everyday lives
  3. The activity will allow them to avoid learning and to not do their school work
  4. They did not feel the article would provide as much insight as real-world research

Correct answer: 2. This is the best option. Students respond much better to “authentic” activities or activities that they can apply to their lives.

Question 8

Robert and John are two siblings who are new ELL students. Robert is the older brother and has been in and out of school throughout his childhood while his younger brother, John, is in first grade, after completing kindergarten the year before. Throughout the school year, John is progressing at a faster rate than Robert. Their parents become concerned at the discrepancy in academic performance. Which of the following is the best explanation a teacher could provide the parents about their concern?

  1. Because John is younger than Robert, his ability to absorb the language is better. Robert’s academic performance will improve as he increases his English skills
  2. That Robert should be tested for a learning disability
  3. The first-grade curriculum is easier than Robert’s curriculum
  4. Because Robert has been in and out of school, academics are more difficult as he has gaps in his knowledge while John, being a first-year student, is starting from the beginning

Correct answer: 4. This is the best answer. John is beginning his schooling in America without a significant gap in his academic progress. The concepts being taught will be in-line with his past schooling. However, Robert has had gaps in his education and he is behind regarding language and in his conceptual knowledge.

Question 9

Of the following, which is the best grading resource to use for group projects and activities?

  1. A teacher-designed rubric
  2. A teacher-student designed rubric
  3. A teacher’s impression of how the project fulfills the project requirements
  4. A student’s impression of how the project fulfills the project requirements

Correct answer: 2. This is the best option as the students will be aware of the requirements and would be able to give their input for the project requirements.

Question 10

A standardized test falls under which category of assessment?

  1. Formal
  2. Mastery
  3. Formative
  4. Ongoing

Correct answer: 1. Standardized tests are norm-referenced, typically to national norms, and are in the formal assessment category. They are routinely scheduled and timed.

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