Teaching History to ELLs in Standards-Based Settings: Implications for Teacher Educators

  • Paul J. Yoder
  • Stephanie van Hover


This case study of a middle school U.S. history teacher examines the teacher’s decision-making and meaning-making processes in teaching English Language Learners (ELLs) in his classes. Data collection draws on the perspectives of the teacher through interviews and document collection, while a series of seven classroom observations of three separate classes provides insights into instructional practice and interaction with students. The theoretical framework of Thornton’s (Teacher as curricular-instructional gatekeeping in social studies. In: Shaver JP (ed) Handbook of research on social studies teaching and learning. Macmillan, New York, pp 237–248, 1991) characterization of the social studies teacher as curricular-instructional gatekeeper and Grant’s (History lessons: Teaching, learning and testing in U.S. high school classrooms. Lawrence Erlbaum Publishers, Mahweh, 2003) conceptualization of ambitious teaching and learning inform the data analysis. The findings indicate that the teacher focused on the skills section of the state standards as a means of bridging the official curriculum and the perceived cultural and linguistic needs of his ELLs.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Paul J. Yoder
    • 1
  • Stephanie van Hover
    • 2
  1. 1.Eastern Mennonite UniversityHarrisonburgUSA
  2. 2.University of VirginiaCharlottesvilleUSA

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