The reading education of English Language Learners (ELL) is one of the most important issues in education today. The pace of immigration has dramatically increased the ELL population in our schools. Close to 20% of all students in the U. S. come from homes in which English is not the primary language spoken.
There are two schools of thought regarding effective programs for English Language learners (ELL). Both center on the language of instruction for students speaking languages other than English. Bilingual education proponents feel that children should be taught in their native language and then transitioned to English-only instruction. Some bilingual programs teach young children to read in both their native language and in English at different times of the day. Immersion is an alternate philosophy. With immersion, we expect ELLs to learn English from the beginning, and their native language plays little role in daily reading lessons. Both types of programs have been proven successful in different situations. The quality of instruction appears to be a key factor in ELL success.