What is ELA/ESL/ESOL?
For years, we have used the term "ESL" to refer to English language instruction for immigrants and refugees. However, English as a Second Language often doesn't fit our students, many of whom come to us already speaking two or three other languages. ELA (English Language Acquisition) or ESOL (English for Speakers of Other Languages) are more accurate terms for the classes provided to those who want or need to learn English. Regardless of what the classes are called, English language instruction is an important tool for adults who are eager to learn to read, write and speak English.
Many students enroll in classes to gain the skills they need to find a good job. Some are parents who want to be able to help their children with school work and participate in activities with their children. Some have recently arrived in the US and need help to start their new life here.
The reality is that there are thousands of adults in the Tarrant County area who are looking for classes. The Tarrant Literacy Coalition is committed to helping them reach their goals.
Opening the Door to Understanding
Depending on the needs and goals of the students, different types of classes are available. For example, some students want to practice their English skills so they can read notes from their child's school. Others want to prepare for an English competency exam to enroll in college, and others want to improve their customer service skills on the job.
In order to accomodate these varied needs, classes often focus on one or several of these areas:
Daily Living and Culture
These classes primarily assist recent immigrants and refugees adjust to American culture. They prepare students by improving basic life skills, such as dealing with American currency, apartment rental agreements, or navigating road signs and bus schedules. They also assist students for their job search be talking about American work culture, filling out job applications, and practicing for job interviews.
These classes are designed to help students at various levels with reading, writing, and speaking skills. Students range from beginners with little to no experience with English, to intermediate students who need improvement in reading and writing, to advanced students who need to enhance their skills in order to advance in the workplace.
These classes or meetings allow adults to practice using their English conversational skills. The structure typically allows for speaking English in a variety of situations, generally with volunteers who speak English well.
Tarrant Literacy Coalition sponsors classes on Tuesday mornings and Wednesday evenings at our location on Southwest Blvd. We also help place students and volunteers with English language programs throughout Tarrant County.
If you know of a student who needs help to enroll in a class, contact us.