Language Learning Through Science04/09/2019
A bilingual Science Fair was held on Tuesday. Nine brave students from the English Language Assistance Program (ELAP) gave science presentations in English and in Karen.
ELAP teacher Rod Kerr said, “usually the students make oral presentations within the class, but it’s important that the students gain as much experience talking to a variety of audiences. Today the students were out of their comfort zone and they really responded to the challenge.”
Students started with presentations to friends, family and staff in the ELAP classroom. Live demonstrations of the experiments were very popular! This was followed by in-depth talks, including the Scientific Method, in both English and Karen.
The highlight of the day was the sheer excitement of the students and the support they gave each other. As well, it was good to see their families take such an interest and generate so much “science talk” in Karen and English.
Experiments were as varied as:
- Can coke dissolve eggshell?
- How long does it take to turn a sliced apple brown?
- Can a rubber band break a watermelon?
- Colour Blindness
- Can water travel along a piece of string?
- Can we charge our phone with a lemon?
- Water Fireworks
- How does a lack of nutrients affect plant growth?
- How can I make water walk?
The English Language Assistance Program (ELAP) supports students in need of assistance to improve their English language skills and enable them to successfully complete their secondary school studies. While the focus of the program is language skills, these are developed through engagement in a variety of curriculum areas, such as Science.
About the English Language Assistance Program (ELAP)
Catherine McAuley College’s English Language Assistance Program (ELAP) supports students at the college from non-English speaking backgrounds, with a dedicated centre at both the Coolock (Years 7-9) and St Mary’s (Years 10-12) campuses.
This support is available to all students in need of assistance to improve their English language skills and enable them to successfully complete their secondary school studies.
Refugee and English as an Additional Language (EAL) students are supported by an interdisciplinary team which includes two EAL teachers and two multicultural teacher aides, one of whom comes from our local Karen community.
The College offers students an intensive EAL program which links to mainstream subject areas. Students also access elective classes outside the ELAP in which they are supported by the multicultural aides.
Catherine McAuley College is proud of the successes of the newly-established English Language Assistance program and is grateful for the support of Mercy Education Ltd and the Catholic Education Office in getting this program established. As the Bendigo region continues to expand and welcome more refugee families, we see this program as a key support for these young people and their families as they transition into higher education and employment.