What Are the Three Educational Settings for ELD Instruction?

In the realm of language instruction for English language learners (ELDs), three distinct educational settings have emerged as vital platforms for effective and specialized teaching. These settings encompass various approaches aimed at enhancing language proficiency, cultural understanding, and academic success for ELD students. Each setting presents a unique environment in which educators can tailor their instruction to meet the specific needs of diverse learners.

What Is the Difference Between ELL and ELD?

ELLs come from diverse cultural and linguistic backgrounds, and they may have varying levels of English language proficiency. ELD programs aim to support these students in their language development by providing targeted instruction in English language skills such as reading, writing, listening, and speaking. The goal of ELD is to help ELLs acquire the necessary English language skills to succeed academically and socially.

ELD teachers use a variety of instructional strategies, such as visual aids, graphic organizers, and language scaffolds, to make the content comprehensible for ELLs.

Teachers in regular academic classes may use differentiated instruction and strategies to meet the diverse needs of ELLs. Additionally, schools often provide support services, such as bilingual education or English as a Second Language (ESL) programs, to help ELLs with their language acquisition.

Different Models of Bilingual Education and Their Effectiveness for ELLs

  • Transitional Bilingual Education (TBE)
  • Dual Language Education (DLE)
  • English as a Second Language (ESL)
  • Heritage Language Maintenance Programs
  • Two-Way Immersion (TWI) Programs
  • Content-Based Instruction (CBI)
  • Sheltered Instruction Observation Protocol (SIOP)
  • Multilingual Education (MLE)
  • Language Immersion Programs
  • Early Exit Bilingual Education Programs
  • Late Exit Bilingual Education Programs

Understanding a student’s English Language Proficiency (ELP) level is crucial in providing appropriate support and resources for their language development. ELP codes categorize students into different proficiency levels ranging from 1 to 7. Codes 1-2 represent beginning English speakers, followed by codes 3-4 for intermediate level speakers. Code 5 indicates borderline proficiency, while code 6 identifies a student who was previously an English Learner (EL) but now proficient. Lastly, code 7 is assigned to native English speakers who’ve never been identified as an EL. Each code helps educators tailor instruction to meet the specific needs of each student, ensuring an inclusive and effective learning environment.

What Does a Students ELP Level Mean?

A students ELP level is a measure of their proficiency in English as an additional language. ELP codes are used to classify students into different levels based on their language skills. These codes range from 1 to 7, each representing a different level of proficiency.

ELP codes 1 and 2 are assigned to beginning English speakers. These students have minimal language skills and are still in the early stages of acquiring English. They may have a limited vocabulary and struggle with basic communication.

These students have developed some basic language skills and are able to understand and communicate in simple English. They may have a larger vocabulary and a better grasp of grammar rules compared to beginners.

ELP code 5 is used for students who’re considered borderline proficient. These students have made significant progress in their English language development, but they still require some support and may have difficulty with more complex language tasks.

ELP code 6 indicates a Former-EL who’s now proficient in English. These students were previously identified as English learners but have demonstrated a high level of language proficiency and are now considered fluent in English.

ELP code 7 is reserved for native English speakers who’ve never been identified as an English learner. These students have a strong command of the English language and don’t require any additional language support.

By knowing a students proficiency level, educators can provide appropriate materials, strategies, and support to help students continue to grow and succeed in their English language development.


These settings include the pull-out model, where English learners receive targeted instruction outside of their regular classroom; the push-in model, where an ELD specialist provides support within the general education classroom; and the co-teaching model, where a general education teacher and an ELD specialist collaborate to deliver instruction together. Each of these settings has it’s own advantages and challenges, and the choice of which model to implement depends on factors such as student needs, available resources, and school context.

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