Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Generation 1.5, Eye Learners and Ear Learners

Questions and Reactions

I think that learning about the experiences, needs and characteristics, as well as historical contexts relevant to generation 1.5 can really shape the choices made by an English or Composition instructor.  I’m surprised that generally, so little seems to be known about  this type of student population; what struck me most when reading the articles was the idea that generation 1.5 students are often designated as ESL and placed into completely inappropriate English classes.   Several questions came to mind when reading:

- If  ESL courses are inappropriate for a student, and so are mainstream classes, where should the student be placed?
- If a generation 1.5 students are placed into an ESL class, how can the instructor best meet the needs of those students, and the ESL students at the same time?  I once taught a non-academic ESL class at a private language school that two high school-aged generation 1.5 students were placed into for visa-related reasons.  They took AP classes at a competitive high school all day then went straight to the language school until nine o’clock at night.  There were also international students and immigrants in the class.  I wonder now what I could and should have done differently to make the class more appropriate for everyone involved.  I think I taught it from a very ESL-type of perspective, could have implemented more effective approaches.

I look forward to learning more about this topic and how generation 1.5 students respond to different types of pedagogical practices. 

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