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Putting English learners on the map

CNN.com recently featured a fascinating interactive map that lets you explore the country by numbers. Specifically, the map focuses on population density. However, there's more. The map lets you focus on different demographics. For example, you can see where the highest concentration of Native Americans are located, or Pacific Islanders. Even more interesting, you can see how the racial/ethnic makeup of our country has changed in the last ten years, using 2010 census data. For example, which areas of the country have seen the biggest change in the population of African Americans? Hispanics? So how does this apply to us as educators?
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The difference a year makes: 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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The Utah Compact: Immigration and education

In November 2010, several Utah government, business, religious, and civic leaders met and drafted a document meant to guide Utah's discussion on immigration reform. This document, the Utah Compact, is a declaration of five principles that reflect the shared values of those who signed it as well as the people and organizations they represent. At a time when immigration is such a contentious issue in this country, the Utah Compact has been heralded by many for its moderate and cooperative tone. The New York Times said, "A clearer expression of good sense and sanity than Utah’s would be hard to find." So what does this have to do with education?
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The difference a year makes: 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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The difference a year makes: Khalid'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 second post in a four-part series; read part one here. In November 2009, I met Khalid Ali. We hadn't actually planned on filming Khalid's story - his teacher, Susan Rudolph, was speaking with us about a different student, but in the course of our interview she mentioned a boy from Yemen who was using Imagine Learning English.
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