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Language and Curriculum

English as an Additional Language (EAL) teaching and learning in UK schools takes place within the mainstream and within all subjects. It is primarily about teaching and learning language through the content of the whole curriculum. Research indicates that it takes as long as seven years for pupils learning EAL to acquire a level of English proficiency comparable to native English speaking peers and this is sometimes used to argue that EAL pupils should learn 'sufficient' English before they join mainstream classes. Teachers cannot wait for EAL pupils to develop high levels of English language proficiency before tackling the demands of the curriculum, but must enable pupils to participate in curriculum content learning while they are simultaneously learning English. This requires the linking of academic content to language objectives and ensuring that language objectives are compatible with academic content.

Section Editor and Author

Constant Leung

On this page you will find web pages from the archived ITTSEAL site for teacher educators new to initial teacher training. Much of this material has been substantially rewritten and incorporated into our new site but we have maintained this archive to support referencing and site users.

The PDF pages are arranged in the same structure as on the original site. Please note that embedded hyperlinks in the documents will not work and external weblinks are no longer necessarily live. If you are searching for a particular resource which you cannot find, please contact us and we will try to help

Language and curriculum

Teaching language and curriculum
Learning in a second language
Supporting language and cognitive development
Social and cultural context