Maximizing Language Development for English Learners (EL-121)

A genre-based approach to boosting language learning in the content areas

✔ All content areas, specialists, instructional coaches, ESL 
✔ Grades 2-12
✔ 15 PDPs in English Learner Education

Instructor: Boni-esther Enquist


This course helps classroom teachers provide targeted and creative language development opportunities for English learners based on the mentor texts used in class as well as typical classroom practices.

In this course, participants have the opportunity to:

  • Unpack the typical patterns of language use in sample text and tasks and their own classroom lessons to identify English language forms and features used in the language of description (informing and explaining), a form of genre-based language instruction. 
  • Analyze and apply effective and creative interactive approaches, tools, and strategies that provide meaningful practice opportunities for English learners to use targeted English forms and features. 
  • Share and collaborate with colleagues through engaging in group learning activities and explorations.
  • Adapt their own lesson to integrate course content.
What is genre?

The following are some examples of how the genre of description (tied to WIDA's key uses informing and explaining) might appear in varied content areas:

  • Describe the main character in the story. (ELA)
  • Describe the characteristics of an invasive plant species (life science)
  • Describe the Mayan calendar (history)
  • Describe the materials your team used to protect your egg during the egg drop challenge. (physics)
  • Describe the difference between a square and a cube. (math)
  • Describe a painting by Michelangelo (art)
  • Describe the instruments in an orchestra (music)
  • Describe the helpers in our community (early grades)


Classroom teachers of all subjects in grades 2-12 and ESL Teachers working with content teachers.


Online: 2 synchronous (live) online sessions plus 3 asynchronous independent work modules.


Fulfills requirement for 15 PDPs in English learner education for recertification.

Course Schedule & Registration

View Schedule and Register Online

Online registration with credit card payment only.
For group registrations or PO Payment, contact [email protected]

Payment & Refund Policies

See MATSOL Course Registration & Payment Policies. Cancellations must be received in writing 10 business days before the first class meeting.