English Language Arts & Instruction

Formal English instruction is introduced in grade 5 for one hour a day. In an ideal situation, a teacher is hired specifically to teach English through the medium of English. This will encourage the students to use the language in the correct context. A language immersion teacher should speak the target language during instruction and not switch between the second language and the dominant language. This will confuse the students and encourage them to fall back on their dominant language (Dual Language Instruction, p. 39). Students should be provided with adequate instructional and literary materials to allow for student achievement in English language proficiency and development. The typical approach in teaching English in the HLIP has been to use it as the medium of instruction for one or two content areas. Noeau Warner, in his preliminary report to Dr. Aizawa in 1990, suggests another approach where the English language arts teacher would integrate the content areas thematically so that “Children will learn English literacy skills through various content areas broadening their exposure and development in English.” (Warner, 1990). Coordination must take place between the Hawaiian and the English teachers to avoid overlapping of content learned. The curriculum at the middle and high school levels may receive more instruction in the English language (ideally, not more than 50%) dependent on the qualifications of their teaching staff.