Inquiry as ESL: Supporting emerging bilinguals' content and language development

Lindsey Moses, Rachel Busetti-Frevert, Rachael Pritchard

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Abstract: This article includes discussion about a formative study in which inquiry was used as ESL instruction for second-grade emerging bilinguals. Drawing on the literature and research surrounding English learners, comprehension, informational text and inquiry, the teachers and researcher integrated comprehension strategy instruction with inquiry and research skills as an instructional approach to support the development of informational reading, writing, listening and speaking in English. The five most frequently used and instructionally essential strategies identified for facilitating the research projects during the study are reported. Each strategy and anchor lesson is explained along with the teachers' narrative account of how they continued facilitating inquiry throughout the week with teaching tips they developed throughout the unit of inquiry. The classroom teachers share challenges, successes and reasons for using inquiry with accompanying photos of student work.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)435-447
Number of pages13
JournalReading Teacher
Issue number6
StatePublished - Mar 1 2015


  • Childhood
  • Choice, preference
  • Comprehension
  • Constructivism
  • Content literacy
  • Depth of (higher level, literal level, etc.)
  • Discussion
  • Domain knowledge
  • Early childhood
  • English language learners, English learners, English as a second language, English for speakers of other languages
  • Expectations
  • Expressive language
  • First, second, etc., language (L1, L2,etc.)
  • Formative experiments, design experiments
  • Home language practices
  • Informational text
  • Instructional models
  • Instructional strategies, teaching strategies
  • Interest
  • Language acquisition
  • Language development
  • Literature
  • Motivation/engagement
  • Multilingualism
  • Nonfiction
  • Oral language
  • Practice, exposure, wide reading
  • Prior knowledge
  • Questioning
  • Reading strategies
  • Receptive language
  • Research methodology
  • Retelling
  • Second-language learning
  • Second-language reading
  • Specific subject areas (math, art, etc.)
  • Summarizing
  • Text features, text structure
  • Text types, text features
  • Vygotskian

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Language and Linguistics
  • Pharmacology
  • Linguistics and Language
  • Pharmacology (medical)


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