English Additional Language (EAL)

True to the nature of an International School working with the English National Curriculum, the language of teaching in RBIS classrooms is English. The only exceptions to this practice are the timetabled Thai language classes for native-Thai speakers.

All of the teachers at RBIS are professionally qualified and experienced specialists with a deep knowledge of the subject they teach and understanding of the students they work with. The students at RBIS have the strong advantage of being taught in small class groupings. In lessons that are interactive, stimulating and motivating, the teachers provide students with the individual attention they need to achieve their academic and personal development goals.

Where students require extra support to enable them to function well in their classroom lessons this support is delivered through our specialist EAL programme.

The term English as an Additional Language (EAL) is the way we refer to the use or study of English language by non-native speakers in an English-speaking environment.

The need for EAL support is determined by the school on the basis of initial and on-going assessments. RBIS uses the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR) to measure a student’s language levels.

At RBIS the teaching programme is personalised and focuses on treating the student as a member of the class. We recognize that our EAL students benefit from targeted support both within an EAL specific classroom and in the inclusive environment of an appropriate year level peer group classroom.

The RBIS teaching programme is personalised and focuses on treating the student as a member of their class. Where students require extra support to enable them to function well in their classroom lessons this support is delivered through our specialist EAL programme.

At RBIS we recognize that our EAL students benefit from targeted support both within an EAL specific classroom and in the inclusive environment of an appropriate year level peer group classroom.

Primary School EAL support . . .

EAL support in the Primary School includes daily practice of basic language skills, phonics support*, targeted small group reading, supported learning and differentiated tasks** within the mainstream classroom.

In monitoring the progress of each individual child our teachers consider the pupil’s age, length of time learning English as an Additional Language, previous educational experience and abilities in other languages.

*phonics is the learning-to-read method that links sounds and the symbols or letter groups that represent them
**differentiated tasks account for the differences between learners so that all students have the best chance of success

Middle and Senior Schools EAL support . . .

EAL support in the Middle and Senior Schools is focused on putting students in the best possible position for academic success in their public examination courses such as IGCSE, BTEC and Advanced level.

Our whole school approach makes the learning of EAL students a focus of curriculum delivery within all classrooms with students having a clear understanding of what they need to achieve and what their language focus is.

RBIS uses the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR) to measure a student's language levels. These levels are used by examination organizations to determine whether students will be successful. The CEFR has 7 levels: A0 (pre- A1), A1, A2, B1, B2, C1, C2.

For success in the Senior classrooms, students need to be at least B2 level.

B2 students can interact with a degree of fluency and spontaneity that makes regular interaction with native speakers quite possible without strain for either party. Students can produce clear, detailed text on a wide range of subjects and explain a viewpoint on a topical issue giving the advantages and disadvantages of various options.

Students remain in their classes with EAL specialist staff brought in to help access the regular course work at a level appropriate for the students.

In addition to in-class support there may be times when a student needs targeted support within an EAL specific classroom. (i.e. private tuition)

English for Academic Purposes (EAP)

We recognise that many students looking to join our academic programmes are proficient users of English as a second language or beginner/intermediate English as an Additional Language (EAL).

These students bring subject knowledge and skills but benefit from support to achieve their full academic potential in examinations taken through the English language.

RBIS has a highly effective and cost-efficient programme of support for those students looking to transition from non-native speaker education through to a full international studies and examination programme.

At the start of the RBIS admissions process student assessments identify a student’s level within Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR) and suggest appropriate placement within a multi-level programme.

A0 (Beginner) A1 (Elementary) A2 (Pre-Intermediate)
B1 (Intermediate) B2 (Upper Intermediate) C1 (Advanced)

The CEFR is an international standard for describing language ability. It describes language ability on a six-point scale, from A1 for beginners, up to C2 for those who have mastered a language. This makes it easy for anyone involved in language teaching and testing, such as teachers or learners, to see the level of different qualifications.

Working within differentiated class groups, and with a specialized teaching team, each student follows a personalized programme of learning.

For some students the recommendation is to follow our Intensive English for Academic Purposes (EAP) provision.

Within the supportive atmosphere of the RBIS Learning Centres this programme sees students completing English as the main focus of their timetables; reaching the English language skills and confidence to achieve in an academic setting and demonstrating the acceptable levels of understanding and output required to access the mainstream studies and examination curriculum.

Progress and attainment will be measured by the students (CEFR) score recorded through Cambridge English exams.

Foundation Low level of English language A1 and A2
Intermediate Good level of English language B1 and B2
Mainstream Able to keep up with work set in class B2+

Students classed as Foundation learners must be immersed in the English language in the intensive English for Academic Purposes (EAP) course.

The RBIS Intensive EAP programme teaches certain standards and techniques. In common with most language teaching EAP instruction teaches vocabulary, grammar and the four skills (reading, writing, speaking – including pronunciation – and listening) but these are tied to the study needs of students.
Students focus on learning the language in a short time and the intensity of this style of learning means that materials are more interesting as students quickly reach a higher level.

Daily practice and repetition help the memorization of new words, phrases and expressions, and speeds up the process of mastering the language.

This course prepares students with the skills and strategies they need to make the transition to learning within the mainstream English language classrooms. With key skills and vocabulary identified by each subject specialism, students are encouraged to develop independence in a range of academic tasks. They participate in seminars; lead classroom workshops; read and interpret a range of academic texts; take effective notes during lectures and class discussions; write essays; and apply a range of learning strategies and research skills effectively.

At the end of the EAP session students are issued with an official transcript of their grades/attendance.

What takes place in the intensive EAP programme is just the beginning of the learning experience at RBIS and a great preparation for students looking to transition to a full international studies and examination programme.

A whole school approach makes the learning of EAL students a focus of curriculum delivery within all classrooms with students having a clear understanding of what they need to achieve and what their language focus is.

If you have made the choice to take an international studies and examination programme,

 

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