This fall semester four education majors (EDST) have been participating in a teacher internship program on campus with the ESL@SetonHall intensive English program. As volunteer interns, the undergraduates have been gaining firsthand experience in ESL (English as a Second Language) instruction. The interns have been serving multiple roles during classtime – such as group discussion facilitator, one-one tutor, and whole-class instructor – to make valuable contributions to student learning in ESL classrooms.
The four undergrad interns teamed up with three individual ESLP classes: Marissa Todd and Richa Tolani with ESLP 0800 Pronunciation and Communication Skills course; Jeanne Kang with the ESLP 0451 Vocabulary Development course; and Meghan Kelly with the ESLP 0431 Advanced ESL Reading/Writing course. As a group, the interns picked up valuable ESL instructional techniques which they will apply to their teacher education programs at Seton Hall University and beyond into their future teaching careers.
Undergraduate interns and their hosting teachers recently shared testimonials regarding the internship experience:
Jeanne Kang, ESLP Teacher Intern and EDST Undergraduate Major
I learned a lot as an intern in the ESL programs. I learned how to conduct classes for students who are learning English and thought of different ways I could help them learn best. I was able to observe what students were struggling with and how they connected English to their first language. I had the opportunity to teach mini lessons which was beneficial for an education student like me. As a future teacher, it will be important for me to know how to approach English language learners, and the ESL teacher intern program helped me a great deal!
Marissa Todd, ESLP Teacher Intern and EDST Undergraduate Major
As a teacher intern, I’ve had the opportunity to put into practice what I’ve learned in my education classes. I have thoroughly enjoyed working with ESL students this semester. In a way, they’ve taught me as much as I’ve taught them!
Soma Philipose, ESLP Instructor
Through the teacher internship program, the students in my class (ESLP 0451, Vocabulary Development) had the opportunity to meet and interact with Jeanne Kang, a volunteer undergrad intern. She attended my class once a week and she enriched their learning experience. I think it’s important for ESL students to interact with English speakers of their own generation and get their perspectives and hear their experiences. Jeanne is an international student with an innate cultural awareness and empathy and she could effectively help students who needed more individual attention. She is creative and enthusiastic and engaged the students with fun activities and online vocabulary games which helped to boost their skills. I feel the internship program had a positive impact on my ESL students and I would encourage more students to join the internship program because it can be a rewarding experience for both the Interns and the ESL students.
Diane Zediker-Pastore, ESLP Instructor
In the ESLP 0800 pronunciation classroom, volunteers Marissa and Richa played an important role in serving as models of the sounds and rhythms of natural American speech for ESL students to emulate. Equally important was the time they spent speaking and practicing with the ESL students, applying the theory the students had learned in the class. This type of interaction will facilitate a successful transition to the U.S. university classroom.
Bryan Meadows, ESLP Instructor
Meghan Kelly, ESL Teacher Intern and Secondary Education major, has been a welcome presence in the ESLP 0431 Advanced ESL Reading/Writing course. She donated a tremendous amount of her time, attending both weekly sessions regularly for the entirety of the semester. She brought humor and authenticity to the classroom discussion to build meaningful rapport with the ESL students. Meghan showed incredible resourcefulness in that she was able to step up to take the instructional lead with little time for advance preparation. She also expertly led the class through mini-lessons that she prepared entirely on her own. Meghan worked directly with students in small group discussions and paired-reading tasks. In her teacher practice and in her strong sense of service, Meghan represents the best of servant leadership ideals.
The teacher internship program brings together local and international students on campus to find shared points of mutual understanding and dialogue. Working together in the ESL classes, student efforts help to reinforce a shared sense of community on campus that is inclusive and welcoming to cultural diversity. To participate in the next round of ESL teacher internships, please contact Dr. Bryan Meadows, ESL@SetonHall Program Director, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
About the ESL@SetonHall intensive English program
The academic-based ESL@SetonHall intensive English program prepares individuals for success in postsecondary undergraduate and graduate programs in the United States. During morning coursework, students study reading, writing, listening, and speaking using academic materials. During afternoon coursework, students select from a range of elective classes including TOEFL Preparation, Digital Media Publishing in English, English for Specific Purposes, and Pronunciation Skills.