EduGuide is intentionally designed to equip English Language Learners (ELL) to build their English reading, writing, and vocabulary skills while also growing belonging, purpose and persistence.
A cycle of setbacks
Working with high ELL schools, EduGuide found that students who struggle with reading and writing English are especially vulnerable to a lower sense of belonging, engagement, and growth mindset. These are critical factors that can hinder their ability to succeed, creating a cycle of recurring setbacks.
It’s an issue that affects both the 1-in-10 students who are learning English as well as the many students of different demographic groups who read below grade level.
Working to narrow achievement gaps
To address this issue, EduGuide conducted research with our partners at Stanford to better understand the needs of English Language Learners. We then worked with schools that had a high number of ELL and other low literacy students to find ways to narrow gaps. The result was a unique, more holistic program that enabled students to grow their language and literacy skills at the same time they grew their social and emotional strengths.
Scaffolded content boosts literacy
EduGuide now combines peer mentoring and learning about habits of success with an English-language-learning system that has since achieved significant results in independent research. Now students can use the words they know and quickly learn the words they don’t. Here’s how:
- ELL students can click on any word to get a translation into Spanish and 8 other languages.
- Low literacy students can click any word to get a low literacy definition or hear an audio clip.
- Words students seek help on are added to a glossary where they can continue to get support and even quiz themselves. Teachers can also use EduGuide as a diagnostic to see which words individual students need help with.
- Video captions are provided for those with hearing loss and also to promote comprehension and word recognition.
- Both the pace and level of writing on the app can be customized at the school, classroom or individual student level.
- Students can also use speech to text on devices with a microphone to report on their learning and the results of their challenges.
- And EduGuide Discussion Guides now help teachers support ELL comprehension before and after activities with introductions to key vocabulary and concepts.
Building belonging and comprehension
Subsequent research in high ELL schools has found that these processes have succeeded in helping students learn skills and build mindsets that improve behavior, grades and test scores. And the fact that many students continue to write on EduGuide in their primary language provides qualitative evidence of comprehension.