What Supporting ELLs in K-8 Looks Like with Guest Jina Wood


Click below to hear what supporting ells in k-8 looks like:

Have you been curious what ESL teachers’ roles look like in other districts?  We are joined by special guest Jina Wood who is sharing what her role as the K-8 ESL teacher looks like in her district in Iowa.

Jina gives us a look at her challenges and shares her tips on how she ensures her students’ needs are being met. In this episode, Jina talks about how she groups and supports her ELL students, how she prepares for the school year during the summer, why it’s important to advocate for both your students and yourself, and how she uses her special education background to best support her ELLs.

Jina Wood has been teaching ELL for 7 years. Her current role is as the K-8 ESL Coordinator and Teacher at Cherokee Elementary and Middle Schools in rural Northwest Iowa. As an Iowa educator Jina is certified in K-12 Special Education, K-12 English as a Second Language, K-12 Reading, and holding a Masters in Professional Education. 

She has worked in education for 18 years, starting as a para-educator and then working in 9-12 Special Education, K-12 ESL, and also is a part time professor for the Schools of Education and Special Education at a local university but she has found her passion to be her ESL work. Jina and her husband have a busy blended family with 6 kids between them; 3 are now working full time, 2 are in college, and their youngest will be a high school senior this coming school year.

Jina loves the community that comes with being part of the Equipping ELLs membership because it helps her have the ability to collaborate with others around the world! If you’re interested in being part of this amazing community PLUS have access to lessons, activities, and tons of resources, join us! We’d love to see you inside!

Topics discussed in this episode:

  • Jina’s background and journey to teaching ESL
  • How she balances supporting ELLs at many different levels with many different schedules
  • What she does to prepare for the upcoming school year during the summer
  • Jina shares her huge success story!
  • The importance of advocating for yourself and your students so you can provide the best support possible
  • How Jina uses her special education background to make sure that each ELL’s needs are being met

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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.


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