The Repository @ St. Cloud State

Open Access Knowledge and Scholarship

Date of Award


Culminating Project Type


Degree Name

English: Teaching English as a Second Language: M.A.




College of Liberal Arts

First Advisor

David H. Robinson

Second Advisor

Suellen O. Rundquist

Third Advisor

Ramón Serrano

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

Keywords and Subject Headings

Classroom strategies, Mainstream teachers, LEP students


The number of Limited English Proficient (LEP} students in American schools is increasing. School districts, ESL professionals. and mainstream teachers are all being called upon to respond to this cultural and linguistic diversity. Mainstream teachers in particular are experiencing first hand the challenges of working with students for whom English is not the first language. Core subject areas, i.e. mathematics, science, social studies, and language arts, are based on curriculums intended for English speaking students. As such, when students are non- or limited English speaking, they cannot easily participate in English-medium classrooms unless certain modifications and/or accommodations are made to make material more comprehensible to them.

Through qualitative research, the purpose of this study was threefold: to discover what knowledge and attitudes mainstream teachers have regarding their LEP students, to learn about their "success stories" with LEP students, and to combine their teaching strategies with current research into a handbook which can serve as a resource for mainstream teachers.

The survey and interview data yielded insight into mainstream teachers' perceptions and practices when working with LEP students. It revealed what steps some teachers are taking to improve their effectiveness with these students. It is the contention of this researcher that much can be learned from one's colleagues, especially for those working under similar circumstances. Thus, the interview data, largely based on actual teachers' own "success stories" with their LEP students, is significant in that it can help other teachers in their own classrooms.

The research which resulted from this study suggests several conclusions and recommendations regarding how mainstream teachers can better serve the needs of their LEP students. It points to the need for cooperation and collaboration between all professionals involved in the education of LEP students, and it also confirms the existence of classroom teaching strategies both in the theoretical and the practical realms. Relevant teaching strategies are continuously being created and used, and this researcher hopes that a non-comprehensive compilation, in the form of a handbook of strategies, will be useful for mainstream teachers.

OCLC Number