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Supporting ELLs from across the globe: Imagine Learning adds Somali first-language support

Imagine Learning recently introduced Somali first-language support. The new addition makes it easier for even more students to gain language and literacy fluency. As students use Imagine Learning and become more proficient in English, the language support gradually fades, preparing students for English-only environments. Imagine Learning now offers first-language support in 15 languages: Spanish, Portuguese, French, Haitian Creole, Korean, Vietnamese, Mandarin, Japanese, Arabic, Russian, Marshallese, Tagalog, Cantonese, Hmong, and Somali. Somali language support is just one of the many features included in the latest update, Imagine Learning version 13. Packed with new curriculum, iPad delivery, and the new Action Areas tool, version 13 provides language and literacy instruction better than ever. Watch the v13 video.
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The benefits of dual-immersion education

Several weeks ago, Carter wrote a great post on dual-immersion programs, specifically Chinese immersion programs in Utah. That post, combined with another interesting article on research in bilingual education, prompted me to learn some more about dual-immersion programs in the United States, and I found some interesting things.
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Video: Helping students reach their potential--Christian's story

Last year I traveled to Miami as part of the video team. We were there to visit schools and meet the great administrators, teachers, and students who were using Imagine Learning English. During our visit to Southside Elementary School, I met a first-grader named Christian. Christian had moved to the United States from Brazil only four months previously, but he was already beginning to speak English really well. Christian loved the Imagine Learning English program, and my jaw dropped as I watched him read stories on the computer that were beyond his grade level.
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Video: Imagine Learning "Baby got Booth"

Next week is the 45th annual TESOL convention, where educators from across the country will gather to exchange ideas and learn about innovations in the field of English teaching. This year, the convention will be held in New Orleans, Louisiana, and Imagine Learning will be there with our brand new booth. So if you're planning to attend any or all of the convention next week (Mar 17-19), stop by booth #108, where you can play an exciting new game and enter to win an iPod! Here's a little video to give you a sneak peek of our new-and-improved booth: Be sure to come play our "Free the Aliens" game, an interactive game based on our letter-recognition activity of the same name from Imagine Learning English. Think you've got what it takes?  High scorers win daily prizes like iPods.
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Success stories: Israa's story

As part of our One Year Later series, we’re sharing the stories of four students who have made remarkable progress with Imagine Learning English in just one year. This is the fourth post in a four-part series; read part one here, part two here, and part three here. Like Khalid, Israa was not part of our original filming plan when we visited Place Bridge Academy in November 2009. It was Israa’s teacher, Della Hoffman, who introduced us to Israa. She had moved to the United States from Iraq earlier that year and, in just a short time, had benefited significantly from using Imagine Learning English. Israa Back in November 2009, Ms. Hoffman led us to the computer lab where Israa and her class were using Imagine Learning English. While it is not uncommon to hear students talking and singing, blissfully unaware of their surroundings as they listen to the computer through headphones, I remember walking into that room and immediately hearing one student singing louder than the rest: Israa.
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