Best Practice

EAL: Supporting teachers to plan for linguistic diversity

Many of our EAL students will likely have suffered a language learning loss during successive lockdowns. Kamil Trzebiatowski considers ideas and resources to help support teachers who have such learners in their classrooms


Since the introduction of the first lockdown in England in March 2020, most learners’ schooling has been disrupted. While remote and socially distanced learning will have affected most pupils’ attainment and progress, many learners using EAL also experienced language loss, having been exposed to less English language and having had fewer opportunities to speak, read and write in English.

In research published this month, (Scott, 2021), among those teachers who were able to comment, 69 per cent reported negative impact of school closures on the language skills of learners using EAL; 15 per cent of primary and 22 per cent of secondary teachers also reported that learners using EAL lost confidence to speak to their peers or in class.

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