Improving in ELA

Ways To Improve Your ELA Skills

You have come to the right place!  You have already made the first step in improving your ELA skills by exploring your teacher’s website! By the way, in case you did not know, ELA stands for English Language Arts.  Now that you know what ELA means, we can move on.  :-).

It is so important that in order to improve in any area that you first take initiative.  Be a responsible learner.  Be proactive in doing what it takes to acquire the information you need to succeed.  Think of your teacher as the facilitator, who gives you access to the tools you need to take things even further.  Your own initiative is such a powerful tool in getting to where you need to be.  Do not sit around waiting for answers, go research them.  Then come to class and share with others to see if what you found out matches what others might have found.  In this act alone you will be building a set of sources to return to over and over.  Nothing makes a teacher happier, than a student who takes pride in his or her own learning!

Next, be sure to Ask questions.  Questions are great!  In fact, one of the great strategies to learning and understanding is simply to ask questions.  When you read a book, ask questions as you go through the text.  What does the author mean when she says this?  What does this word mean?  Why does the author include this information?  How does the character feel? etc.  These are questions that will lead to deeper knowledge.  You will only improve by asking questions–asking will not make you seem stupid or “dumb,” as many of my students like to say! “There are no dumb questions”–they are vehicles to greater thoughts and ideas.

Talking to others is a sure-fire way to improve your English language skills.  Speaking is a huge part of learning any language.  Participate in classroom discussions, online forums, etc.  You have a voice that must be heard.  In this class, I want to hear your voice!  Of course, part of that comes with listening.  Be sure to listen to what others have to say.  Part of learning also comes from social cues and developing those social skills that will enhance communication with others.  Listen to your peers, your teachers, your parents, and other school staff to improve your skills.  Become as interactive as possible because teaching others is a great way to enhance what you learn.  The knowledge you achieve is stronger when shared.

Finally, I wish to encourage you to stay positive.  Be confident that you have all you need to grow in this class.  The only thing that will hinder you is you.  I am here to help to take you to the next level, but you will go far beyond where I will ever be able to take you.  See you in class!

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