Labelle Chimes in with Engaging ESOL Strategies

Teachers at Labelle get moving to engage all students!

Learning instructional strategies for English Learners through professional development is an ongoing practice for teachers and administration at Labelle Elementary School.


It’s critical for teachers to build both background knowledge and vocabulary when teaching English Learners (ELs), and this practice benefits all students. In a recent ESOL Professional Development session, teachers at Labelle Elementary learned to use Total Physical Response (TPR) to engage their students in learning language and content. TPR is an evidence-based method in which teachers coordinate language and physical movement and gestures, and students respond with language and whole-body actions. Labelle teachers practiced using TPR, taking turns to act out a story using facial expression, proximity, and body language while their “students” used the target vocabulary to retell the narrative.

The teachers also learned to use activity $10,000 Pyramid, an excellent strategy for reviewing vocabulary taught previously.  Teachers actively took turns practicing the use of simple and complex language as they gave hints and definitions to help their partner guess the correct vocabulary term. This vocabulary tool develops language through conversation, active use of vocabulary, and processing.

The session concluded with a discussion of how teachers would apply the strategies effectively in their classrooms to differentiate for our EL and non-EL students. Labelle’s students are going to be intrigued and actively engaged as they learn through activities and strategies that meet them at their English language proficiency level and help them build their language and vocabulary skills!


Tiffany Honoré, Director
Title I

Delores Thompson, Supervisor
Title I

Natalie Hutchins, Supervisor
Engage I

Contributing Author: Dr. Elizabeth Webb, Supervisor, ESOL/Title III and Dr. Arleen Folorunsho, Consultant, ESOL/ Title III

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