Columbus State's ESL Afterschool Communities (ESLAsC) program at North Linden is supported by a 3-year Ohio Department of Education 21st Century Community Learning Center grant. It is located at the North Linden Elementary School. The program serves ESL students in 2nd through 5th grade. The North Linden program shares the goals of the other ESLAsC programs; Academic Achievement, Youth Development and Family Engagement.
The program strives to better overall academic achievement of enrolled students, with an emphasis on math and literacy rates. Students are tutored through their homework and take part in homework enrichment activities, completing additional, creative study materials designed to increase critical thinking and improve their English reading and writing skills. As the student’s literacy comprehension improves, so does their ability to complete homework and do well in testing.
The program provides a large collection of leveled books for the students to choose from. Their teachers often give them reading reports as homework. The students are able to choose a book from their reading level, either from the school library or the program’s collection, and complete a report of what the book was about. Tutors and volunteers help the students through this as they read aloud, either to their tutor or a partner. The North Linden program also has a healthy partnership with the local library, providing the students with library of cards and presenting them with more opportunities to improve their ESL skills.
As ESL students attend schools that do not share their first languages, the focus on Youth Development is crucial. The program at North Linden works to help students relate to others through different games, crafts, fieldtrips and activities. Students learn to act fairly and as a team as they play group games coordinated by tutors. The students learn to respect classmate’s opinions and personalities as they work on crafts together. Everyday skills such as leadership, service and responsibility are introduced to students as they are offered the opportunity to volunteer for specific program tasks. Students also get a chance to experience new things as the program facilitates field trips throughout the year. Each day at North Linden’s afterschool program sees student’s learning lessons that promote healthier lifestyle and behavioral patterns.
North Linden’s third point of emphasis is Family Engagement. For students to be successful in school and also in the real world, families as a whole must be reached. This is accomplished as the afterschool program fosters partnerships with the elementary school, local libraries and other community institutions, providing Adult ESL classes, Story Time Readings in collaboration with the local library and Family Health events such as flu shot clinics. The afterschool program serves as the vital communication line between families, schools and community organizations. Families are strengthened as they grow connected to the community and take an active role in their children’s education.
North Linden Afterschool Program