Welcome to TELLSyllabus: Understanding Language Acquisition Explanation of the Template:Total Points SheetSession 1: Language and IdentityLA 1.1: Did You Know?LA 1.2: My Language ExperienceLA 1.3: Whose Language Is Correct?LA 1.4: Accents and Dialects - What Do You Hear?AVG 1.1: Membership in a Speech Community SegmentLA 1.5: Questions We Have HW 1.1: Reflect and ImplementHW 1.2: Honoring Language DifferenceHW 1.3: Everyday Ethical DecisionsHW 1.4: Read the Wright Book, Ch. 1HW 1.5: Select a Student to StudyHW 1.6: The Harvard Dialect SurveySession 2: Who are Our ELLs? Defining Needs and StrengthsLA 2.1: Cummins Review and DiscussLA 2.2: Who Are Our ELLsLA 2.3: Getting to Know a Second Language LearnerLA 2.4: Providing Evidence / Collective ExpertiseLA 2.5: Makoto's Writing AnalysisHW 2.1: Reflect and ImplementHW 2.2: Models and Systems - Part 1HW 2.3 Read the Definitions of Program Models HW 2.4 Models and SystemsHW 2.5 Factors and NeedsHW 2.6 Learning about L2 LearnersSession 3: Current Realities: ESL Programs and PracticesLA 3.1Jigsaw Wright ReadingLA 3.2 Programs and Practices in My Local Setting LA 3.3 Content Area Literacy in SLA LA 3.4 Supports and Constraints for MakotoLA 3.5 Communication, Pattern, & Variability HW 3.1 Applying My Learning HW 3.2 Learning about Input HW 3.3 Input: Teacher Work HW 3.4 Knowing My Second Language Learner HW 3.5 Input: Teacher WorkSession 4: Creating Comprehensible InputLA 4.1 Critical Research on Input: Jigsaw Reading LA 4.2 Feedback About Knowing my Second Language LearnerLA 4.3 Comprehensible InputLA 4.4 Modifying Oral Input LA 4.5 Input and Vocabulary Development HW 4.1 Applying My Learning HW 4.2 Understanding InteractionHW 4.3 Promoting Oral Language in the ClassroomHW 4.4 Search and Final HW 4.5 Classroom Observation and AnalysisSession 5: The Role of InteractionLA 5.1 Feedback About Knowing My EL StudentLA 5.2 Role of Interaction in English Language DevelopmentLA 5.3 Negotiating Meaning Through Interaction: Gallery WalkLA 5.4 Classroom Parables of Cultural Interaction PatternsLA 5.5 Strategy Search ReportHW 5.1 Learning a New LanguageHW 5.2 Learning From Student Writing Session 6: Stages of Development and Errors and FeedbackLA 6.1 Video Segment 7.1 on Stages of Development: PatternLA 6.2 Charting Treasure: Mapping Stages of DevelopmentLA 6.3 Patterns: Errors and FeedbackLA 6.4 Error Analysis of Student WritingLA 6.5 Table Problems HW 6.1 ReflectionHW 6.2 Analysis of Student Work HW 6.3 What does it Mean to Know a Language HW 6.4 Variability in Learning a LanguageSession 7: Proficiencies and PerformancesLA 7.1 Discussing VariabilityLA 7.2 Readings about VariabilityLA 7.3 Variability Matrix LA 7.4 Getting to Know English Language Learners LA 7.5 Understanding the Final DisplayHW 7.1 ReflectionHW 7.2 Final Project Session 8: Displays of Professional DevelopmentAVG 8.1 Classroom Strategies: Action as Advocacy LA 8.1 Examining Displays of Professional DevelopmentLA 8.2 Discussing My Learning

LA 1.3: Whose Language Is Correct?


Learning Outcome Pedagogical Intent Student Position

Identify and articulate how your beliefs impact attention to language.

Assessment: 25 pts.

TA: 45 Minutes

Teachers will reflect upon their own language learning and understand their role as a member of various speech communities to better under-stand the speech communities of students and their families.

Students have learned new facts about categories that contribute to judgments about correctness, have discussed some of their own language experiences, and have watched a video about membership in a speech community. Students are now prepared to synthesize beliefs and assumptions about correctness with linguistic facts on the topic.


  1. Get into groups of 4. Together, identify assumptions people make about others who use non-standard varieties of English (such as Black Vernacular or Latino English) and the labels used to summarize those assumptions. Write these labels and assumptions on a poster with a yellow highlighter. Leave about six inches at the top of the poster to use later.
  2. Each member of the group should select one of the four readings (found below) about different speech communities.
    1. Study the samples and rules in the reading for the speech community you selected. Think about the relationships in the sample and rules provided and the assumptions you included on your poster.
    2. Read and think about the quotations and questions that connect the speech community reading to who you are as a person and your responsibilities as a teacher.
  3. As a group, read aloud the quotation at the bottom of each reading page and discuss your thoughts about the readings. At the end of the discussion, summarize the readings and what you learned by creating one take away statement(s) with your group. Write your group’s take away statement(s) above the assumptions on your poster using a black marker. Be prepared to share this idea with the class.


1. Latino Dialect 

2. Classroom Dialect

3. Appalachian Dialect

4. African American Dialect