Integrated ELD

Integrated ELD

Research demonstrates that daily action-oriented strategies help ELL students to consistently practice and apply their language skills in real-world contexts, reinforcing their learning. Teachers can use the daily routines that help ELL students feel more comfortable and confident in their learning environment because they see the same routine used across their school day. Maintaining high academic expectations ensures that ELL students are challenged and motivated to achieve their full potential. The instructional routines scaffold their learning and understanding to meet these expectations. Rigorous instruction helps ELL students develop critical thinking and problem-solving skills, which are essential for success in higher education and careers. Integrating EL strategies into core literacy routines ensures that ELL students are not isolated in their learning but are part of the broader academic community. These strategies benefit all students, especially those with acquired, yet unrecognized literacy deficits. Our strategic approach encourages a continuous cycle of improvement, benefiting ELL students through ongoing refinement of teaching practices. Teachers engage in reflective practices to evaluate the effectiveness of their strategies, making data-driven decisions to support ELL students. Research of Dr. John Hattie found that Teacher Collective Efficacy has the highest effect size of all instructional practices. 

Integrated ELD by Integrating the Curricula

The California Common Core State Standards (CA CCSS) for ELA/Literacy advocate for dual integration, promoting the idea that reading, writing, and discourse should mutually support each other's development. Additionally, these skills are most effectively taught and learned when used as tools for acquiring knowledge and inquiry skills within specific disciplinary contexts like science, history, or literature. This concept is supported by the Committee on Defining Deeper Learning and 21st Century Skills, emphasizing a "double vision of integration" (2012, p. 114).

The CA ELD Standards reflect this integration through their structure and organization. Part I, “Interacting in Meaningful Ways,” includes sections that are inherently integrated:

  • Collaborative: Engaging in dialogue with others.
  • Interpretive: Comprehension and analysis of written and spoken texts.
  • Productive: Creation of oral presentations and written texts.

Part I focuses on meaning and interaction, while Part II emphasizes knowledge about the English language and its functionality. This integrated approach is designed to enhance the learning and application of English language skills across various disciplines.

Figure 2.4. Relationships and Convergences Among the Practices in Science, Mathematics and English Language Arts Source Cheuk, T. 2013. Relationships and Convergences Among the Mathematics, Science, and ELA Practices. Refined version of 


Cheuk, T. 2013. Relationships and Convergences Among the Mathematics, Science, and ELA Practices. Refined version of diagram created by the Understanding Language Initiative for ELP Standards. Stanford, CA: Stanford University.

Both sets of standards encourage students to use language arts strategically to acquire content knowledge and express their understanding. The framework illustrates how integrating curricula through inquiry-based learning, interdisciplinary units, and real-world applications like service learning can motivate students by making connections across disciplines and areas of interest. This integration helps students consolidate and expand their learning, reinforcing both language arts and various content areas. Effective integrated curricula should be purposeful and well-planned to ensure meaningful learning experiences.