Stella Villalba divides her everyday life teaching English language learners for one part of the day as she has been doing for 18 years. The other part of her day includes collaborating and coaching teachers across the Dublin, Ohio school district, bridging understandings regarding teaching ELLs. Stella is currently a Lead Ambassador for NCTE. She is passionate about languages, literacy and culture.You can keep up with Stella at her blog, Learn Love Grow.
Do you have young readers and writers in your class who constantly talk to themselves? Stella Villalba helps a teacher decode the value of this self-talk for first grader Kayla, using it as a springboard for more learning.
Stella Villalba explains how frustrations with the families of English language learners can come from misunderstandings of cultural norms, and gives some tips for building awareness.
Stella Villalba is at a loss when a teacher is hostile to a new English language learner in her classroom. She considers the unspoken challenges of welcoming students who may have had no time at all in schools in their previous history.
Retelling is an essential skill many English language learners struggle with. Stella Villalba finds tackling vocabulary in context is the key for many.
Stella Villalba shares some of her favorite new picture book bIographies for bringing history to life for young learners, with a focus on perseverance.
Stella Villalba uses the inquiry and reflection skills she has developed as a teacher to pore through her planner and journal for clues to why her energy flagged in the winter and spring, and what she can do differently next year.
There is probably no population more misunderstood or vilified than refugees. Stella Villalba shares a booklist to help young students understand the refugee's plight and experiences.
Asking the right questions of family members can get you far more valuable information than anything from an assessment, especially when you are dealing with English language learners. Stella Villalba explains why initial meetings with new families are crucial.
Did you know the average length of stay in a refugee camp is 17 years? That’s only one of the many astonishing facts Stella Villalba learned as she worked to learn more about the needs of the refugees in her school district.
Stella Villalba explains why rereading is especially useful for young English language learners, and shares some simple strategies for integrating more rereading strategies into reading and writing workshops
We spend a lot of time early in the year getting to know students and their families, and often celebrate the diversity of these families late in the year with multicultural festivals. Stella Villalba worries that this is a missed opportunity (especially with English language learners). She shares how teachers can integrate getting-to-know-you activities into regular classroom routines all year long.
Stella Villalba explains why focusing on rhyming words is crucial for young English language learners.
Stella Villalba finds English language learners struggle less when teachers understand what adaptations are needed in the classroom environment.
Stella Villalba starts writing workshop with her young English language learners by having everyone share their plans in a community circle.
Stella Villalba shares some of her favorite children’s books that mirror the home cultures of English language learners.
Stella Villaba models nonfiction writing for her first- and second-grade English language learners, and in the process integrates vocabulary instruction into her lesson. This is the final video in a three-part series.
Stella Villalba models nonfiction writing for her first- and second-grade English language learners, and in the process integrates vocabulary instruction into her lesson. This is the second video in a three-part series.
Stella Villalba models nonfiction writing for her first- and second-grade English language learners, and in the process integrates vocabulary instruction into her lesson. This is the first video in a three-part series.
Stella Villalba explores why it is so important to teach vocabulary to English language learners in context.
Stella Villalba shares some modifications that can help English language learners demonstrate skills and knowledge.
Stella Villalba finds mid-workshop conversations are a terrific routine to add to literacy workshops to promote growth, especially for English language learners.
Stella Villalba finds she needs new strategies for assisting a young autistic English language learner.
Stella Villalba rethinks the seemingly innocuous “What did you do last summer?” writing assignment at the start of the year, especially for children who may have more limited experiences than peers.
Stella Villalba finds what English language learners need more than almost anything else is patience with silence and time to formulate responses.
Stella Villalba leads a guided reading group of first-grade English language learners, beginning with building vocabulary.
Do you have English language learners in the silent period in your school? Stella Villalba has tips for teachers working with them.
Stella Villalba gives a tour of her classroom library and publishing corner designed to support the grades 1-5 English language learners she works with daily.
Stella Villalba writes about the importance early in the year of building habits with students that maximize time for English language learners.
Stella Villalba confers with Hermione, a first grader who is also an English language learner. Hermione is combining research and writing as she writes a nonfiction report.
Stella Villalba has advice about connecting nonfiction, young English language learners, and the Common Core.
Stella Villalba confers with first grader Jocelyn about the information text she is writing about bunnies. Jocelyn is an English language learner, and this conference demonstrates the value of oral rehearsal for young ELL writers.
Stella Villalba scaffolds the language development of her first- and second-grade English language learners during read-aloud by highlighting vocabulary and providing a tool to assist with a partner retelling activity.
Stella Villalba incorporates more speaking and listening activities into her primary classroom for English language learners.
English language learners may have some of the quietest voices in schools. In this poem and narrative, Stella Villalba shares the power of finding ways to bring those voices out in your classroom.
Stella Villalba shares practical tips for helping young English language learners collaborate with classmates and receive feedback during writing workshop.
Stella Villalba explains how her poetry cafe program brings families together for a festive event, and helps English language learners develop reading and fluency skills at the same time. This is the first installment in a two-part series.
Stella Villalba explains how her poetry cafe program brings families together for a festive event, and helps English language learners develop reading and fluency skills at the same time. This is the second installment in a two-part series.
How can teachers promote good independent reading choices for English language learners? Stella Villalba has suggestions.
If you’re nervous about working with English language learners, Stella Villalba has some reassuring advice for you.
People around the world celebrate the holidays in different ways, and that diversity provides wonderful learning opportunities this time of year. Stella Villalba shares literary holiday projects and a booklist around the themes of “peace” and “wishes” that might help students find common ground in family traditions.
Stella Villalba shares her favorite bilingual (English/Spanish) books for helping young English language learners feel at home in new classrooms early in the year.
Stella Villalba has practical advice for reaching a young English language learner who is reluctant to write and often frustrated.
Stella Villalba uses the Photo Booth app to build stamina in a young English language learner, as well as reinforce the learning and practice at home.
Stella Villalba teaches young writers about writer’s craft. So how come evidence of learning from the minilessons isn’t showing up when she confers with her students? She decides to develop a plan to help students link craft lessons with their writing.
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