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Abstract

One of the problems in text-to-speech (TTS) systems and

speech-to-text (STT) systems is pronunciation estimation of unknown words. In this paper, we propose a method for extracting

unknown words and their pronunciations from similar sets of

Japanese text data and speech data. Out-of-vocabulary words

are extracted from text with a stochastic model and pronunciations hypotheses are generated. These entries are verified by

conducting automatic speech recognition on audio data. In this

work, we use news articles and broadcast TV news covering

similar topics. Most extracted pairs turned out to be correct

according to a human judges. We also tested the TTS frontend enhanced with these entries on other web news articles, and

observed an improvement in the pronunciation estimation accuracy of 9.2% (relative). The proposed method can be used to

realize a spoken language processing system that acquires and

updates its lexicon automatically.

1. Introduction

Recent advances in spoken language processing (SLP) techniques have given rise to a number of practical applications.

One of these applications is text-to-speech (TTS), which converts written text into speech. One of the largest obstacles in a

TTS system is the existence of unknown words. Usually TTS

systems are equipped with a module which estimates a pronunciation of unknown words from their spelling. However, the

accuracy of this module is not sufficiently high, especially in

languages which use ideograms such as Japanese and Chinese.

Unknown words or out-of-vocabulary words are also problematic in speech-to-text (STT) systems.

In this paper, we propose a method for extracting unknown

words and their pronunciations automatically from comparable

sets of text data and speech data. The main idea is to compare

a collection of text data and a collection of speech data talking

about the same topics. Our method is summarized as follows:

1. Extract unknown word candidates from the text data.

2. Enumerate possible pronunciations for each word candidate.

3. Search for pronunciations in the speech data.

The search is executed by using an automatic speech recognizer

(ASR). Unless the searched pronunciation is very long, a possible pronunciations may be matched not only with correct words

but also at incorrect positions in speech data. Thus, when we

search for a possible pronunciation of an unknown word candidate, it is strongly required to check its context. This context

can be calculated from sentences in text data.

In some languages such as Japanese, the target language of

this research, words are not separated by a whitespace. Thus

first of all, word boundaries must be identified by an automatic word segmenter. However, an automatic word segmenters

tend to make errors at unknown words and output incorrect

word boundaries. So we regard a text as a stochastically segmented corpus (SSC) [1] in which sentences are segmented into

word sequences stochastically, not determinatively as in ordinary methods. The ASR system searches for all possible pronunciations of unknown word candidates in speech data, representing contexts with a word n-gram model estimated from an

SSC.

In the experiment, we extract word-pronunciation pairs

from broadcast TV news and web news articles in the same

period. Evaluation is done using a different set of web news

articles.

2. Language Model for TTS Front-end

The method we propose in this paper for extracting unknown

words and their pronunciations uses an ASR coupled with a language model (LM) describing the contexts of the unknown word

candidates. In this section, we explain a TTS front-end based

on n-gram modeling.

2.1. Text-to-Speech Front-end

In the stochastic approach for pronunciation estimation [2], a

sentence is regarded as a sequence of pairs u consisting of

spelling of a word w and a phoneme sequence y, that is u =

w,y[1]

1

. Using an n-gram model based on this unit, Mu,n, the

probability of a unit sequenceu = (u

1u

2 ···u

h), is calculated

as:

Mu,n(u) =

h

Y+1

i=1

P(ui|u

i−1

i−n+1),

where ui (i ≤ 0) and u

h+1 is a special symbol BT (boundary

token).

Given a character sequence x as an input sentence, the

front-end outputs uˆ, a sequence of units with the highest

probability, under the constraint that the concatenation of the

spellings is equal to the input sentence:

uˆ = argmax

x=w1

w2···wh

Mu,n(u

1u

2 ···u

h), (1)

where wi is the spelling of the pair ui.

2.2. Pronunciation Estimation for Unknown Word

In order to handle unknown words, a special symbol UU is introduced to represent all units outside of vocabulary U, a set of

word-pronunciation pairs. When a UU is predicted by Mu,n, a

1

In the original paper [2] the unit is a quadruplet of spelling of a

word, its part-of-speech, its phoneme sequence, and its accent sequence.

1. Decompose the spelling into a character sequence and

generate all possible pronunciations for the characters

from the dictionary

ex.) (mo ri, ma mo, shu), (o ku, ya)

2. List all pronunciations of the word candidate by taking

one possible pronunciation for each character

ex.) mo ri o ku, mo ri ya, ma mo o ku,

ma mo ya, shu o ku, shu ya

3. For each possible pronunciation, calculate the joint probability in which the candidate word has the pronunciation

using the n-gram model based on word-pronunciation

pairs expressed by Equation (2).

ex.) P(mo ri o ku,守屋) = 0.65

P(mo ri ya,守屋) = 0.12

.

.

.

Note that in this example the correct pronunciation of the word

守屋 is “mo ri ya,” the second probable one, thus the TTS

front-end fails to produce a correct pronunciation of this word.

4.3. Searching for Pronunciation in Speech

The last step is to check if these hypothesized pronunciations for

word candidates are observed in speech data. Since speech data

have no clear word boundary information and contain pronunciation fluctuations and noises, a pronunciation may match at improper position as well. For example, let us assume that speech

data contain the pronunciation of a word “memorial park” as

follows:

··· me mo ri a ru pa a ku···.

A pronunciation “mo ri ya” for a word candidate “守屋 may

matches by mistake at the position of “mo ri a” when the pronunciation of the word “memorial park” is fluctuated. Therefore

it is important to check the contexts of word candidates when

we search for pronunciations in speech data. So we propose

to use an ASR system coupled with an LM estimated from our

pseudo-SSC.

The following is the processes to count the frequencies of

candidate pairs of word and pronunciation appearing at phonetically and linguistically proper positions in speech data.

1. Prepare an ASR system with a proper acoustic model for

the speech data.

2. Add extracted word candidates to the vocabulary of the

ASR system.

3. Re-estimate an LM of the ASR system from the pseudoSSC used for word candidate extraction.

4. Execute speech recognition on the speech data talking

about comparable topics to the text data.

5. Count the frequencies of word-pronunciation pairs in the

ASR system results.

As a result of the above processes, we expect to obtain correct

word-pronunciation pairs with their frequencies from text data

and speech data.

5. Evaluation

As an evaluation of our method for extracting wordpronunciation pairs, we measured pronunciation estimation accuracies of a TTS front-end with and without extracted pairs.

5.1. Experiment Conditions

We prepared an annotated corpus composed of articles extracted

from newspapers and example sentences in a dictionary of daily

conversation. Each sentence in the corpus is segmented into

words and each word is annotated with a phoneme sequence.

Table 1 shows the corpus size. The ME-model for WBP estimation and a stochastic TTS front-end are built from this corpus.

Our method uses text data and speech data to extract

word-pronunciation pairs. The text data we used are composed of two sources: one is newspapers, which is different

from the corpus for building the ME-model, the other is web

news articles crawled 4 times a day for 68 days (02/11/2007

– 08/01/2008). Table 2 shows the corpus size. We extracted

word-pronunciation pairs from the text data. As for speech

data we recorded 30 minute TV news for 34 days (05/12/2007 –

08/01/2008).

Then we tested the TTS front-end on the web news articles

of 250 sentences on the day after the above period (09/01/2008).

5.2. Parameters and Other Features

We used the pseudo-SSCs derived from the text data for building an LM of the ASR, too. So we conducted preliminary experiments in which we calculated the perplexities of LMs built

from N pseudo-SSCs by changing the multiplier N. The result

showed that the LM built from 10 pseudo-SSCs had a similar

perplexity to the LM built from the SSC. Thus we set N to 10.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

20 TOEIC Tips

  1. Set a goal

    So, you’ve decided to take the TOEIC test. Congratulations! The first thing you should do is set a goal. If you are taking the test in order to apply for a job, find out what proficiency level is required.

    Choose a goal that is achievable. If you aim too high, you will be disappointed. Remember, you can take the test as often as you want if you don’t mind paying the fee.

  2. Understand the test

    Before you start studying for the test, make sure you understand the format of each section. You will be tested on your listening and reading comprehension skills. By doing model or practice tests, you will become very familiar with the TOEIC. The test should become “second nature” to you before you attempt the real thing.

  3. Make a study plan

    Procrastination is one of the key reasons students fail the TOEIC test. You may book your TOEIC test months in advance. However, the day you decide to take the TOEIC test should be the day you start to study.

    You will have to decide whether or not you are going to teach yourself the TOEIC with reliable resources or whether you are going to take a TOEIC preparation class. In order to get the best results, you should do both. If you cannot afford to take a TOEIC class, make sure to choose a TOEIC textbook that has explanatory answers. You will also want to have a teacher or tutor that you can go to from time to time with questions.

    If you choose a TOEIC class, make sure that you trust your teacher and feel comfortable in his or her class. Take a class with a friend and make a commitment to study together in and outside of class.

    Studying at the same time every day is a great way to improve your score. Write down your study plan and sign it!

  4. Divide study time appropriately

    Each section is worth a certain amount of points. Don’t spend too much time studying one section. Many students make the mistake of studying the section that they enjoy the most. This is the section you should spend the least amount of time on.

    You might want to divide your study week by focusing on a certain section each day. Remember, if Sunday is your day to practice Part VII (40 questions on the test), you might have to study twice as long as you would on Monday when you focus on Part I (20 questions on the test).

  5. Build a strong vocabulary

    Another reason students fail the TOEIC test is that they have a very limited vocabulary. The day you decide to take the TOEIC test you should make yourself a blank dictionary. Use a notebook (an address book works great because it is divided into letters) and keep track of all of the new words you learn along the way. It is not useful to study vocabulary lists. You will only remember words that you have seen in context. For each entry, write the word and use it in a sentence. At the end of each week you should write a short letter or composition using as many of the words as you can.

    This might also be the time to stop using your translation dictionary. Electric dictionaries make things too simple! You will not remember the word if it doesn’t take any effort to understand it.

    Keep in mind that the TOEIC test has a business theme. You should study vocabulary from topics such as travel, banking, health, restaurants, offices, etc. You will also want to learn everyday idiomatic expressions.

  6. Isolate your weak points

    After you have been studying the TOEIC for a while, you will find out which parts give you the most trouble. You might want to change how you divide your time. There are certain grammar points that many students have trouble with. If you are taking a TOEIC class, ask your teacher to bring in extra homework help on problems like these. If you are studying by yourself, find a good reference book in the library and look up your question. There may also be help on the Internet. For example, type “gerunds” into a search engine and you will probably find a useful exercise.

  7. Eliminate distractors

    In every TOEIC question, there are at least two distractors (wrong answers that the test writer uses to trick you). It is much easier to choose the correct answer when you have only two to choose from. (The third choice is often impossible and easy to spot.) There are many types of distractors such as, similar sounds, homonyms, repeated words, etc. As you study, make yourself a list of distractors. When you come across them you will be able to eliminate them more easily.

  8. Trust your instincts

    Sometimes an answer will jump out at you as either correct or incorrect. If you have been studying hard, chances are that your brain is telling you which choice to pick. Don’t change your answers after following your instinct. If you do decide to change an answer, make sure that you erase very carefully. A machine will be marking your test. Be sure to use a pencil and fill in your circle choice completely. Bring extra pencils, erasers, and a pencil sharpener!

  9. Don’t try to translate

    Translating vocabulary and sentences wastes a lot of time. It is very rare that students have extra time during the TOEIC test. If you don’t know a word, look at the context of the sentence and the words around it. You will not be allowed to use a dictionary when you take the test.

  10. Guess as a last resort

    On test day, if you don’t know the answer, and you have eliminated all of the distractors you can, don’t leave the space blank. There is a good chance you will not have time to go back to this question. You still have a 25% chance of getting the answer right if you guess. If you are sure that one or two of the answers are incorrect, your guess is even more likely to be correct!

  11. Be aware of time management

    When you are doing practice tests, you should always be aware of the time. Never allow yourself an open ended study session. You will have to learn to work efficiently.

    On test day, you should be especially careful in the Reading section. You will have 75 minutes to complete Parts V, VI and VII. Many students spend too long on section V or VI because they find these the most difficult. Don’t spend more than 30 minutes on the first two parts. Part VII will take you at least 40 minutes, and it is worth a lot of points, especially if you find it an easier section.

  12. Listen quickly

    When you are studying for the TOEIC test, do not get in the habit of rewinding the tape. On test day you won’t have any control over the speed of the listening section. You will not even have time to think for very long between questions. Make sure that you do not get behind during the real test. If you do not know the answer, take your best guess. Then continue to follow along. Don’t look back at questions when you are waiting for another question to start.

  13. Practise reading aloud

    Reading out loud will help your listening and reading comprehension skills. In order to comprehend English more quickly, it is important that you understand the rhythm of the language. Read from textbooks, pamphlets, newspapers, and even children’s novels. You might want to tape yourself and listen to how you sound.

  14. Use mass media

    One of the best ways to prepare for the TOEIC test is to study real English. Watch television, listen to radio reports, and read newspapers and magazines. Pay special attention to ads, letters, weather and traffic reports, coupons, and special announcements. Do this with a friend, and write out questions for each other to answer. This is a great way to practice your wh-questions. It is also a great way to learn common idiomatic expressions.

  15. Use free web sites

    There are many web sites that offer free model tests and samples. Type TOEIC into your search engine and start practising! Surfing the web is a great way to practise your reading and listening. If you are interested in a certain topic, such as snowboarding, type that into a search engine. You might want to reserve an hour a day for Internet studying. Just make sure to study English and don’t get caught wasting hours playing games!

  16. Teach a native English speaker your language

    If you can’t afford a tutor, you might know a native English speaker who would be interested in learning your first language. Tell him you will teach him for free for one hour a week! You will have to use English to teach him, and you will learn many new English words and expressions at each session. Forcing yourself to teach someone a language will help you to understand English grammatical rules as well. Do anything you can to speak with native English speakers.

  17. Keep an English journal

    Keeping a journal doesn’t have to be an account of your daily activities. You can write anything in a journal, such as how your studying is coming along, what your new favourite word is and why, or which teacher you admire. If you are studying TOEIC with a friend, make a list of writing topics for each other. You might decide to write a paragraph three times a week. Get your friend to try to find your mistakes. Finding your partner’s writing errors is great practice for Part V and VI.

  18. Ask questions

    Never hesitate to ask lots of questions. In a TOEIC class, all of the students will benefit from your question. If you don’t understand something, such as conditionals, you may lose ten points on a TOEIC exam. A teacher is not always available, but students are everywhere! Sometimes other students can help you with a grammar problem even better than a teacher.

  19. Manage your stress

    If you are feeling stressed about taking the TOEIC you may be studying too hard or expecting too much of yourself. Like everything else in life, balance is the key. Remind yourself that you will try to do your best. Before the test, take deep breaths and remember that you can always improve your score in a few months time. In between the listening and reading section, take a few deep breaths again to get focused.

  20. Don’t cram

    You should never cram (study extremely hard in a short period of time) the night or even week before the TOEIC test. There is so much to learn when you study the TOEIC. The last week should be for reviewing and practising rather than learning new things. Make sure to get plenty of sleep the night before the test. On the day of the test, have a good meal and relax for a few hours before going to the testing centre. Plan to reward yourself when the test is over!

 

 

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Non-English Proficient with ESL and TOEIC Training   Leave a comment

 

 

Come to the Philippines and ‘LEARN” TOEIC/ESL the “English” ‘you” “NEED”

 

“Teacher” “Alvin”

 

Non-English Proficient

Teacher Modeled Instruction

1.6 Uses prior knowledge/context clues for vocabulary

_ Listen to, role play, act out in cooperative groups

_ Provide a variety of multicultural literature to read, discuss, and role play

_ Venn diagrams

_ Art

_ Drama

_ Readers’ Theatre

_ Author Study

Limited English Proficient

Teacher Guided Instruction

1.6 Uses context clues to determine word meaning.

_ Provide a variety of multi-cultural literature to read, discuss, and role play

_ Venn diagrams

_ Art

_ Drama

_ Readers’ Theatre

_ Author Study

Fully English Proficient

Independent with Teacher as Monitor

1.6 Uses dictionaries and glossaries to determine the meanings and other features of unknown words.

_ Provide a variety of multicultural literature to read, discuss, and role play

_ Compare and contrast using

Venn diagrams*

_ Change the point of view of a story by writing it from another character’s point of view

Ex.: In “The Three Little Pigs,” tell the story from the wolf’s point of view

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Non-English Proficient

Teacher Modeled Instruction

2.1 Uses, with teacher assistance, prereading strategies that aid comprehension such as accessing prior knowledge, predicting, previewing, and setting a purpose.

_ Introduce a new book using a book walk* and brainstorm what students know about the topic

_ Ask questions about the words in context to elicit appropriate responses during the students’ reading, i.e.;

– Meaning: Does it make sense?

– Structure: Does it sound right?

– Visual: Does that look right?

_ Draw attention to pictures for added meaning before and during reading

_ Ask students to locate known words prior to reading

 

Limited English Proficient

Teacher Guided Instruction

2.1 Identifies pre-reading strategies that aid comprehension such as accessing prior knowledge, predicting, previewing, drawing conclusions, locating known and unknown words, and setting a purpose.

_ Draw on prior knowledge/personal experience

_ Preview and set purposes to make predictions and improve comprehension

 

Fully English Proficient

Independent with Teacher as Monitor

2.1 Uses pre-reading strategies such as accessing prior knowledge (schema), predicting, previewing, and setting a purpose to make reasonable predictions and to improve comprehension.

_ Anticipatory guide (true-false pretest)

_ Is my prediction right?

_ Use graphic organizers such as

K-W-L* chart

 

 

 

 

Fully English Proficient

Independent with Teacher as Monitor

2.2 Uses self-correcting strategies such as self-questioning; reading ahead and then rereading a word, phrase or sentence, and rereading to gain meaning from text.

_ Provide opportunities for students to self correct

– For example: student reads the word “road” instead of “street,” and then the teacher will say, “It makes sense and sounds right, but does it look right?”

– Ask the students to “Try that again.”

– Student will reread for clarification without teacher prompting

 

Non-English Proficient

Teacher Modeled Instruction

2.2 Uses, with teacher assistance, the three-cueing systems (contextual, structural, and visual clues), selfmonitoring, cross checking and selfcorrecting strategies such as rereading, substituting (replacing a known word), and reading on.

_ Use books with simple and predictable text to model language structure

_ Ask questions about words in context to elicit appropriate responses during the students’ reading, i.e.;

-Meaning: Does it make sense?

-Structure: Does it sound right?

– Visual: Does it look right?

_ Discuss book cover: “What do you think the story will be about?”

_ Share pictures – do a book walk.

Elicit responses from print, story, and experiences

_ Give students time and opportunities to correct errors

 

Limited English Proficient

Teacher Guided Instruction

2.2 Identifies self-correcting strategies such as self-questioning, selfmonitoring, cross-checking, reading ahead, and rereading.

_ Use self-monitoring, crosschecking, reading ahead, and selfcorrecting strategies to gain meaning

_ Guide students through threecueing systems

_ Guide the students in developing the use of meaning, structural and visual cues to self-correct by:

– Making logical word substitutions

Recognizing and self-correcting, errors and (miscues)

 

Non-English Proficient

Teacher Modeled Instruction

2.3 Demonstrates reading skills that contribute to comprehension including recalling details of the text while reading, drawing conclusions and distinguishing between realism and fantasy.

_ Have students draw and label pictures related to a story topic or own experiences

_ Have students identify real and make believe through “read

aloud.”

 

Limited English Proficient

Teacher Guided Instruction

2.3 Restates facts and details in order to recall the main idea of the text while reading.

_ Have students use the context of the read aloud to draw inferences

_ Revisit text to scan and skim for information and recall major points

_ Use George Gonzales techniques such as “Fact and Opinion” and the

“Summary Glove

 

Fully English Proficient

Independent with Teacher as Monitor

2.3 Recalls essential points in text while reading; make and revise predictions about coming information.

_ Develop comprehension by asking literal, inferential, and interpretive questions

_ Use Directed Reading-Thinking

Activities (DRTA)*

_ Use literature discussion groups (literature circles)

_ Use summarizing and paraphrasing techniques

フィリピン留学、ダバオE&G英語学校です。マンツーマン英会話授業、綺麗な施設と美味しい食事で充実な留学生活サポート

フィリピン留学ダバオE&G英語学校
  • 6月 13, 2012Davao(ダバオ) 紹介

    Davao(ダバオ) 紹介

    ダバオ(Davao)はフィリピン南部ミンダナオ島に南から切れ込んだダバオ湾に面した港湾都市で、メトロ・マニラ、セブに次ぐフィリピン第3位の都市である。人口は約200万人。..

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安全なダバオE&Gで格安英語留学

スタッフ日記 E&G Blog

DAVAO E&Gは日本人学生を積極的に受け入れています。海が見える英語学校E&Gは充実したマンツーマン授業、個々に合わせたカリキュラム、安い留学費用など英語留学先として十分メリットがあります。また、綺麗な環境、美味しい食事と厳しい生活管理で皆さんの留学生活をサポートします。お気軽にお問い合せください。

今すぐお問い合せ:無料留学相談受付中

優秀な講師陣と格安留学費用
フィリピンで最も安全な街に選ばれたダバオの海辺に位置しているE&G英語学校は合理的に格安料金を実現、留学費用を抑えることができます。 優秀な講師陣、フレンドリーなスタッフなど最適の環境を揃っています。 特に学生個々の実力向上のためのカスタマイズされたカリキュラムを提供しており、このため、一日4時間のマンツーマン授業と4時間の小グループレッスンを提供しています。 詳細を見る>
E&G Davao 2013

 

 

Non-English Proficient   Leave a comment

Non-English Proficient

Teacher Modeled Instruction

1.3 Identifies simple prefixes, common suffixes, and abbreviated words in context.

_ Use Word Wall* activities to add suffixes to known words -s, -ing,-ed

_ Use pictures, modeling to demonstrate change in meaning

_ Explain, explore common abbreviations as they arise

_ Select a “king of -ing” who adds “-ing” to a variety of words

Limited English Proficient

Teacher Guided Instruction

1.3 Identifies the meanings of simple prefixes, common suffixes, and abbreviated words in context and use context clues to determine word meanings.

_ Use NEP activities and;

_ Add simple prefixes un-, re-, etc.

_ Generate words by adding prefixes and suffixes

Fully English Proficient

Independent with Teacher as Monitor

1.3 Uses dictionaries and glossaries to determine the meanings and other features of unknown words.

_ Use NEP and LEP activities and:

_ “Grow Words” starting with the root and adding prefix and suffix elements

Ex: Depend

Dependable

Undependable

_ Discuss/demonstrate changes in meaning

_ Use activities in Making Big Words

_ Use dictionary to look at root word and see how morphemes change the meanings

_ Use Word Banks, word sorts, and word hunts in text

_ Use CLOZE* activities-Dictations, words on the wall and content words

THE SECOND LANGUAGE

ACQUISITION PROCESS

Students acquire a second language by taking in language that they understand, by producing language that is understood by others, and by doing both in the context of interaction that promotes language learning. In the process of participating in communication, Second Language Learners (L2) begin consciously, as well as unconsciously, to structure a representation of the particular target language, a task the human brain is uniquely qualified to do. As the learner engages in communicative interaction, the representation of the target language can be refined and rules generated. This gradually developing linguistic system is called an inter language; it rests somewhere on a continuum between the speaker’s first language and the language that he or she is learning. On this continuum, different aspects of the language may develop at different rates; thus the learner’s syntax, for example, may be further from the target language than his or her pronunciation. The L2 traits that characterize this inter language are the result of the learner’s less than perfect representation of the target language. They are often the result of incorrect guesses on the part of the learner about how to say something in English. These faulty hypotheses, however, are a crucial part of the L2 learning process. Feedback, either formally from a teacher or informally from other speakers, can cause the learner to revise these hypotheses; over a long period of time these revisions can help the learner approach mastery of the language. Unfortunately, if L2 learners function for long in a language without getting adequate feedback, they may not fully develop their control of the language. In fact, their language development may stop before they have acquired all the Natures of the language.

THE CHALLENGE OF ACADEMIC LANGUAGE

Acquiring the kind of language required in academic settings is a far more challenging task than learning a language for merely conversational purposes and takes much longer. L2 learners are often at a disadvantage because they are faced with the task of acquiring and using English at the same time they are trying to learn academic subjects. Classroom lectures in, say, science or social studies are given in English; a report for science must be written in English; and assignments in mathematics courses often require both sophisticated reading and writing skills in English for the student to offer a solution to a problem. Thus, in instances where their English -speaking peers have only to accomplish one task, L2 learners have to confront two types of learning tasks – one in acquiring a new language and the other in gaining content mastery.  In classrooms where the language of instruction is English, much of what many L2 learners who lack sufficient English skills hear and even more of what they are assigned to read may be ultimately incomprehensible to them. Students are often asked to read tests that are far beyond their language capacity to understand. They can derive meaning from such tasks only when specifically designed activities accompany the assignment to make tests comprehensible. For example, teachers can preview the material and attempt to activate students’ background knowledge and help to fill in the gaps by explaining and defining words and helping students understand concepts. Further, teachers can also help students monitor their listening and reading and teach them to ask for help when they do not understand what is presented in class or in a textbook. Without this kind of assistance, L2 learners, even when surrounded by spoken and written English, will “tune out” learning, and their exposure to English will contribute little or nothing to their language development.

This guide is a document developed for teachers of grades K-12 and/or teachers in classrooms designed to serve specifically Limited English Proficient (LEP) students as well as those students who were previously identified as LEP students. With the recent passage of the “No Child Left Behind” Act of 2001, local and state educational agencies must provide researched-based instructional educational programs designed to help LEP students achieve the same academic content and academic achievement standards that other children are expected to meet. We believe that all children must meet the English Language Arts standards in the Philippines. In order to fulfill our national initiative to ensure that all learners achieve high academic standards, this guide provides a correlation of researched-based strategies in the form of ESL skills, coupled with effective performance activities, to the adopted English Language Arts Standards. This invaluable tool that supports our existing curriculum was developed by a team of interdisciplinary experts representing the English, Reading, and ESL teachers and consultants as well as school administrators who presently serve diverse learners, including LEP students.

The following sections in the guide, elementary and secondary, will provide a well-structured alignment of teaching and learning strategies to link ESL skills and performance activities to the adopted English Language Arts (ELA) standards established by the Department of Education.

Non-English Proficient

Teacher Modeled Instruction

1.1 Uses knowledge of high-frequency words to read texts aloud with fluency, accuracy, and expression.

_ Use Shared Reading* with enlarged text (big books, charts, overheads)

_ Use predictable, patterned text*

_ Use Readers’ Theatre*

_ Use CLOZE* activities

_ Use Word Wall (and support activities (cite Cunningham) that are meaningful

_ Use simple stories with strong picture support that repeat high frequency words in context (e.g.; Rigby, Wright Group, Dominic Press)

_ Use Guided Reading*

_ Locate known words in text

Glossary Term

1.0: Students know and use word analysis skills and strategies to comprehend new words encountered in text in English.

READING – K-6

Fully English Proficient

Independent with Teacher as Monitor

Limited English Proficient

Teacher Guided Instruction

1.1 Reads texts aloud with fluency, accuracy, and appropriate intonation and expressions; read high frequency words to build fluency.

_ Rhythms, choral reading

_ Read logos and signs in environment

_ Content Shelter Text Highlight:  Vocabulary Read with Fluency,

_ Sing songs, read poems

Are you interested in learning abbreviations and acronyms in English?   7 comments

Teacher “ALVIN”

Come to the Philippines to learn “ENGLISH”

1) Are you interested in learning abbreviations and acronyms in English?
2) Do you know lots of abbreviations and acronyms?
3) Do you think abbreviations and acronyms are useful?
4) Do you have a favorite abbreviation or acronym?
5) Do you think alphabets that don’t have an English script (Chinese, Russian, Arabic, etc.) use abbreviations and acronyms?
6) Do you know the punctuation rules for abbreviations and acronyms?
7) What do you think are the world’s most common abbreviations and acronyms?
8) Do you ever invent your own acronyms to help you study?
9) The website http://www.abbreviationz.com/ says “RSVP” is one of the most popular queries. Do you know what it means?
10) What acronym could you create for your name?
1) What is the difference between an abbreviation and an acronym?
2) How many United Nations abbreviations and acronyms do you know?
3) Are there many abbreviations and acronyms in your language?
4) What do you think about spending a whole English lesson on abbreviations and acronyms?
5) Can you keep up to date with computer and technology abbreviations and acronyms (WIFI, WAP, ISP, WWW, etc.)?
6) Do you think abbreviations in e-mail and text messages are adding to or ruining the English (or your) language?
7) The website http://www.abbreviationz.com lists 33 different meanings for “BYOB”. Can you think of any?
8) “Scuba”, “modem”, radar”, “laser” and “NATO” are all acronyms. Do you know what they mean?
9) Would you like to study for an MA or PhD?
10) What do ante meridian and post meridian refer to?
A.B. Artium Baccalaureus [Bachelor of Arts]
abbr. abbreviation(s), abbreviated
Acad. Academy
A.D. anno Domini [in the year of the Lord]
alt. altitude
A.M. ante meridiem [before noon]; Artium Magister [Master of Arts]
AM amplitude modulation
Assn. Association
at. no. atomic number
at. wt. atomic weight
Aug. August
Ave. Avenue
AWOL absent without leave
b. born, born in
B.A. Bachelor of Arts
B.C. Before Christ
b.p. boiling point
B.S. Bachelor of Science
Btu British thermal unit(s)
C Celsius (centigrade)
c. circa [about]
cal calorie(s)
Capt. Captain
cent. century, centuries
cm centimeter(s)
co. county
Col. Colonel; Colossians
Comdr. Commander
Corp. Corporation
Cpl. Corporal
cu cubic
d. died, died in
D.C. District of Columbia
Dec. December
dept. department
dist. district
div. division
Dr. doctor
E east, eastern
ed. edited, edition, editor(s)
est. established; estimated
et al. et alii [and others]
F Fahrenheit
Feb. February
fl. floruit [flourished]
fl oz fluid ounce(s)
FM frequency modulation
ft foot, feet
gal. gallon(s)
Gen. General, Genesis
GMT Greenwich mean time
GNP gross national product
GOP Grand Old Party (Republican Party)
Gov. governor
grad. graduated, graduated at
H hour(s)
Hon. the Honorable
hr hour(s)
i.e. id est [that is]
in. inch(es)
inc. incorporated
Inst. Institute, Institution
IRA Irish Republican Army
IRS Internal Revenue Service
Jan. January
Jr. Junior
K Kelvin
kg kilogram(s)
km kilometer(s)
£ libra [pound], librae [pounds]
lat. latitude
lb libra [pound], librae [pounds]
Lib. Library
long. longitude
Lt. Lieutenant
Ltd. Limited
m meter(s)
M minute(s)
M.D. Medicinae Doctor [Doctor of Medicine]
mg milligram(s)
mi mile(s)
min minute(s)
mm millimeter(s)
mph miles per hour
Mr. Mister (always abbreviated)
Mrs. Mistress (always abbreviated)
Msgr Monsignor
mt. Mount, Mountain
mts. mountains
Mus. Museum
N north; Newton(s)
NAACP National Association for the Advancement of Colored People
NASA National Aeronautics and Space Administration
NATO North Atlantic Treaty Organization
NE northeast
no. number
Nov. November
OAS Organization of American States
Oct. October
Op. Opus [work]
oz ounce(s)
pl. plural
pop. population
pseud. pseudonym
pt. part(s)
pt pint(s)
pub. published; publisher
qt quart(s)
Rev. Revelation; the Reverend
rev. revised
R.N. registered nurse
rpm revolution(s) per minute
RR railroad
S south
S second(s)
SEATO Southeast Asia Treaty Organization
SEC Securities and Exchange Commission
sec second(s); secant
Sept. September
Ser. Series
Sgt. Sergeant
sq square
Sr. Senior
SSR Soviet Socialist Republic
St. Saint; Street
UNICEF United Nations Children’s Fund
uninc. unincorporated
Univ. University
U.S. United States
USA United States Army
USAF United States Air Force
USCG United States Coast Guard
USMC United States Marine Corps
USN United States Navy
USSR Union of Soviet Socialist Republics
VFW Veterans of Foreign Wars
VISTA Volunteers in Service to America
vol. volume(s)
vs. versus
W west; watt(s)
WHO World Health Organization
wt. weight
yd yard(s)
YMCA Young Men’s Christian Association
YWCA Young Women’s Christian Association

UNDERSTANDING ESL STUDENTS   Leave a comment

Come to the Philippines to learn “ENGLISH”

Teacher “ALVIN”

engdavao@hotmail.com

UNDERSTANDING ESL STUDENTS

This document makes reference to three groups of language learners. The term native speakers of English refers to students whose first language, the language acquired at home, was English. The term, L2 learners (second language learners), refers to all students whose home language during early childhood was one other than English. A subgroup of L2 learners, ESL students are those who have need for ESL programs or classes designed to help them acquire the English language. It is important to understand the dynamics of these three groups because their language education needs are not the same. Such definitions should be integral to any assessment and advising process affecting L2 learners because they will help to distinguish, for example, the L2 learner from most basic skills students whose first language is English. Defining students’ needs by referencing their first language experience will also help educators appreciate the difference between English basic skills instruction for native speakers (remedial English) and instruction designed to assist in the process of acquiring a second/foreign language.

Because L2 learners may not have grown up with the English language or with U.S. culture as part of their primary experience, their educational needs differ greatly from those of native English speakers in our schools. While instruction for native speakers, for example, often tends to emphasize reading and writing, L2 learners at all levels need to learn English as part of an integrated curriculum, which includes listening, speaking, reading, and writing. They need to receive instruction that recognizes language learning as a unique developmental process, one in which what may be perceived as accent or error is actually a natural part of this learning process. To a greater degree than native English speakers, L2 learners need to learn the syntactic structures and organizational pattern of both written and spoken English. They also need to learn about U.S. culture and at the same time receive instruction that validates their primary language and culture. L2 learners who have lived most of their lives in this country are familiar with multicultural America, but they may still need additional language instruction, especially in the areas of academic reading and writing. In addition, efforts to measure L2 learners’ English abilities need to be carefully designed for this particular population. Tests designed to assess native speakers of English are generally inappropriate for L2 learners.

 

Non-English Proficient   Leave a comment

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Non-English Proficient

Teacher Modeled Instruction

1.2 Uses phonics to decode words in context by blending sound units.

_ Use context, sentence structure, and sound to read the words in familiar stories

_ Use repetitive stories

_ Use enlarged text

_ Use Guided Reading*

_ Use Shared Reading*

_ Explore letters and sounds

_ Sort words by beginning sounds

_ Make personal dictionaries of known words

_ Explore sounds using:

– Bags of objects that begin with the target sound

-Label and sort

-Explore sounds using picture dictionaries

-Use Word Walls* and associated activities

Limited English Proficient

Teacher Guided Instruction

1.2 Uses knowledge of phonics and structural elements (e.g., syllables, basic prefixes, roots and suffixes) to decode unfamiliar words of one or more syllables in context to make meaning.

_ Use initial sound, known chunks and context to decode

_ Explore chunks, on-sets, rhymes* as they appear in text

_ Generate new words with chunks, on-sets and rhymes*

_ Combine on-set and rhyme from known words to create new words

_ Generalize to text reading

_ Use Words Sorts

_ Use Making Words

Fully English Proficient

Independent with Teacher as Monitor

1.2 Uses knowledge of prefixes, suffixes, roots, or base words to determine the meaning of words in context and recognize and use inflectional endings such as s, es, ed, ing, ly, est, and er, understanding that meaning may change with ending.

_ Expand Word Walls* and associated activities

_ Continue Making and Breaking*

_ Use Making Big Words

_ Use Tongue Twisters

Academic Settings   Leave a comment

Come and study in the Philippines with me Teacher “ALVIN”

 

 

Academic Settings

 

Acquiring the kind of language required in academic settings is a far more challenging task than learning a language for merely conversational purposes and takes much longer. L2 learners are often at a disadvantage because they are faced with the task of acquiring and using English at the same time they are trying to learn academic subjects. Classroom lectures in, say, science or social studies are given in English; a report for science must be written in English; and assignments in mathematics courses often require both sophisticated reading and writing skills in English for the student to offer a solution to a problem. Thus, in instances where their English -speaking peers have only to accomplish one task, L2 learners have to confront two types of learning tasks – one in acquiring a new language and the other in gaining content mastery. In classrooms where the language of instruction is English, much of what many L2 learners who lack sufficient English skills hear and even more of what they are assigned to read may be ultimately incomprehensible to them. Students are often asked to read tests that are far beyond their language capacity to understand. They can derive meaning from such tasks only when specifically designed activities accompany the assignment to make tests comprehensible. For example, teachers can preview the material and attempt to activate students’ background knowledge and help to fill in the gaps by explaining and defining words and helping students understand concepts. Further, teachers can also help students monitor their listening and reading and teach them to ask for help when they do not understand what is presented in class or in a textbook. Without this kind of assistance, L2 learners, even when surrounded by spoken and written English, will “tune out” learning, and their exposure to English will contribute little or nothing to their language development.

 

TIME AND PROFICIENCY

 

Two important issues in language acquisition are the length of time it takes to acquire proficiency in a second language and how proficiency is defined. Recent research conducted in four states on thousands of students representing over 100 primary languages supports the claim that on average it takes five to seven years for students in the most effective programs to reach the norm on nationally standardized achievement tests such as the Comprehensive Tests of Basic Skills. Education in the first language reduces the amount of time required and improves ultimate second language proficiency. Students with no schooling in their first language take an average of seven to ten years and sometimes more to reach the norm, while in that same period students with the greatest amount of academic language development in L1 (first language) achieve, on average, above the national norm set for English speaking students.

Understanding the length of time required to attain proficiency in a second language is important for all educational professionals because of a tendency to allow L2 learners to move too quickly through a school’s language continuum. Students often feel social or parental pressure to complete their studies, especially in English, quickly. At the same time, schools often feel hesitant to hold L2 learners in an English language program back until they attain adequate proficiency in English to succeed in the next level. Failure to provide enough time, however, has too often proved ultimately detrimental to the L2 learner.

Of course, many variables influence the process of language acquisition, including the amount and quality of instruction learners receive, their opportunities to communicate in the language, their age, their personality and learning styles, their first language literacy level in L1, and their motivation and attitude towards the new language and culture. Even at advanced levels, L2 learners may not demonstrate the proficiency of a native speaker of English. They may speak with an accent and write with the written equivalent of an accent, still exhibiting second language traits, although they will be able to perform academic tasks alongside their native-English-speaking peers, often with great distinction.

 

ESL FACULTY DEVELOPMENT AND COLLABORATION

 

As important as ESL faculty are in serving ESL students, they cannot begin to do the job by themselves.

In most programs, ESL students spend only a small part of their school day with ESL teachers, if they spend any time at all. Most of their time is spent with teachers in other disciplines. Therefore, developing academic language skills for ESL students must be viewed as the task of teachers in all disciplines and at all levels, since L2 learners remain engaged in the process of language development throughout their academic lives.

In order to serve L2 learners, content-area faculty need the following information about second language students:

_ Amount and kind of education they received in their home countries

_ Length of residence in the Philippines.

_ Educational experiences in the Philippines.

_ Results of assessment.

Other curricular issues affect the content-area faculty when dealing with second language learners are as follows:

_ Background in second language acquisition and multicultural communication.

_ Help in designing instruction that will be useful to the L2 learners in their classes.

_ Help in providing instruction that contributes to these students’ language development comprehension

_ Interactive teaching techniques that will make the second language students in their classes be active users of English

_ Useful assessments that evaluate fairly the learning of second language students in their classes.

ESL teachers are an excellent resource for classroom teachers who need help and guidance in effective teaching strategies for L2 learners. ESL teachers can help design lesson plans, provide appropriate materials, and adapt content to make it comprehensible to L2 learners. Close collaboration between ESL teachers and classroom teachers will result in more success for L2 learners in content-based study in the classroom.

 

 

Posted May 23, 2013 by Teacher Alvin in LEARNING ENGLISH

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