CompassLearning has announced it is increasing the number of language offerings in its CompassLearning Odyssey for English Language Learners (ELL) product. Odyssey ELL will be available in Arabic, Chinese (Mandarin), Haitian Creole, Hmong; Japanese, Korean, Portuguese, Russian, and Vietnamese.
The product was first launched in Broadcast Spanish last spring. This next grouping of languages was chosen based on statistics provided by the U.S. Department of Education Survey that described the most prominent backgrounds of ELL students in the U.S. as well as the needs of Odyssey customers.
Odyssey ELL uses a communicative, interactive, and experiential approach to second language instruction. The lessons focus on real world conversations and weave language skills into the exploratory activities. The approach is patterned on the way a young child would learn their own native language, according to the announcement. All programs are conducted entirely in English, with directions and instructions available in the native language dependent upon the individual student's skill level. This assisted language method is a key component of Odyssey ELL and provides the scaffolding necessary to help students navigate the online activities.
The fastest growing enrollment segment in schools today is English language learners (ELL). From 1990 to 2000, ELL enrollment grew by more than 105 percent compared with a 12 percent growth of total student enrollment during the same period and it is expected that this trend will continue, the announcement states. In compliance with No Child Left Behind as well as state mandates, ELL children are tested along with all others in reading and math assessment. But they also are tested on their progress in learning English.
Odyssey ELL is offered in two versions, Levels K-6 (Elementary) and Levels 7-12 (Secondary). The Elementary Level is designed for children ages 5-12 with little or no previous knowledge of English. It addresses basic reading and language learning skills through age appropriate topics and themes. The Secondary Level is intended for learners from beginning to advanced levels. Both versions have content that is customized to align with states' core reading/language arts standards, the standards of the National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE), and Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL).
Source: CompassLearning, http://www.compasslearning.com/