Breaking Down the Language Levels


Click below to hear how to break down the language levels:

Do you have a clear idea of what ELL students at each of the 5 language levels are able to do? It can be overwhelming when you aren’t confident you know how to best support your students. In today’s episode, I’m going to give you a simple and clear breakdown of each of the language levels to help you get started. 

Not every ELL student needs the same things to succeed. If you have 5 ELL students in your classroom, they could all be at varying levels of English. In order to give them the support necessary to succeed, you need to know the different language levels and how to differentiate for each level. 

Keep in mind that your district might use different terms to refer to each level, so be sure to do some research and align with how your school communicates. Also, remember that students can be at one level in one domain and a different level in another domain.

Although being aware of the language levels is important, these levels do not define our students. Nothing can take the place of getting to know students and building relationships with them.

When we have observed and interacted with our students, we’ll know when we can push them and when they might need a little bit more support. If you’d like more support teaching your ELL students, you can sign up for my FREE resource Library of ELL Materials by signing up here. You’ll have access to checklists, strategies, vocabulary cards, digital centers, and more!

Topics discussed in this episode:

  • Review of each of the 5 language levels for ELL students, how long the levels typically last, and common characteristics of students at each level
  • What to focus on when teaching students at each level to best support their needs
  • How to make students feel more comfortable build confidence at each level
  • Practical quick tips for working with students at each level, including simple yet effective strategies

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More about Equipping ELLs:

We all know that teaching isn’t easy, but it doesn’t have to be this hard. Equipping ELLs is a podcast for both ESL specialists and homeroom teachers who are looking for effective and engaging ways to support their English Language Learners without adding to their endless to-do list. Tune in each week to hear tips, strategies, and inspirational stories that will empower you to better reach your ELL students, equip them with life-long skills, and strengthen relationships with colleagues and parents.

Your host, Beth Vaucher, is the founder of Inspiring Young Learners. She is an ESL certified homeroom teacher with over 10 years of experience teaching in the US and internationally. Her background of M.Ed in ESL and Curriculum and Instruction combined with her experience has led her to develop a bestselling newcomer curriculum that has sold in over 90 countries around the globe. She brings a different perspective to teaching ELLs from her years teaching and living abroad and working with ELLs from around the world. You will walk away from each episode with the ideas and tools you need to transform your experience as a teacher and cultivate a thriving and welcoming environment for your ELL students.



  • These podcast are wonderful! I have been sharing with my principal and our EL coordinador as well as my gen Ed teachers. I have found much good and practical advice. Also I can listen when convenient for me. Thank you!


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