Model the Use of Academic Language at All Times, Setting High Expectations for Language Use
Teachers today have more higher education than ever before. In my home state of Ohio, teachers are required to get a master’s degree within seven years of getting their ! rst position in a school; most teachers go on for a “master’s plus” for the love of learning more about their craft. Yet language
in the classroom has disintegrated as teachers try to reach students: “I can’t use big words,” one teacher con!ded in me. “The kids do not have any idea what I am saying.” As possibly the most learned person your students come into contact with on a regular basis, you owe your own use of academic language to them (or at least to the !nancial aid of!cer who holds your debt). Chatting with students about after-school activities or what’s for lunch is !ne for everyday language, but as soon as academics begin, so should the use of academic language (Lane & Allen, 2010).