Contact Sopris
ELL Overview
Proven and promising instructional practices that support ELL educators and students in meeting the English Literacy Challenge.

English Language Acquisition and Proficiency in Social Interactions and Academic Settings

Just as acquiring a second language is a demanding process that takes effort and involves varying levels of instruction, so too is the process of understanding the diverging experiences and cultural background of any one ELL student. That being said, clearly, a child from India is going to need very different scaffolding than a child from Mexico.

Sopris Learning ELL programs utilize the five levels of language proficiency:

  1. Entering
  2. Emerging
  3. Developing
  4. Expanding
  5. Bridging
English Language Learner      English Language Learner

Therefore, these ELL programs offer a broad range of instruction:
  • They are specifically designed to meet the varying needs of ELLs.
  • They are proven effective to provide ELL educators and students with structured practices to listen toand comprehend English, and to speak, read, and write English well.
  • They provide consistent cognitive function across language proficiency levels.
  • They teach vocabulary across content areas directly and indirectly.
  • They provide a context for language use and application across genres, varying types of text, and a variety of social and academic tasks.
  • They have direct connection to the Common Core State Standards.
Acquiring Oral Proficiency

We recognize that focusing on the Five Areas of Reading Instruction as determined by the National Reading Panel is a successful strategy for teaching ELLs; we also understand that it is not sufficient, and ELLs first need to acquire oral proficiency in order to read and write in a language that is not native to them.
Sopris Learning ELL programs integrate the four language skills—listening, speaking, reading, and writing—into instruction from the start:
  • With appropriate and flexible curriculum program options that focus more time on developing vocabulary and background schema
  • By promoting oral interaction between and among students and teachers
  • With accurate progress monitoring and assessment tools that measure the strengths and areas that require increased focus of individual ELL students and help determine placement and shape instruction
Most importantly, for ELL students, this means the use of a multitude of literary strategies to ensure their academic success and allow them to maximize opportunities to learn.


There are a number of instructional methods and program models that are proven successful with ELL students. Please take a closer look here.
ELL research and studies: