HELP Program Instructional Pedagogy

  • HELP Instructional Pedagogy
    HELP employs a research-based pedagogy for teaching ELLs mathematics and other academic content that had proved effective in a classroom setting. This instructional methodology is called Sheltered Instruction Observation Protocol or the SIOP Model (Short & Echevarria, 1999). The sheltered method—devised initially for ELLs—is proving to be increasingly popular with non-ELL teachers and has demonstrated remarkable success with non-ELL students in a classroom setting.
  • Click here to see a demonstration of the use of sheltered instruction techniques.
    The purpose of this video is to offer the viewer an understanding of what it feels like for a non-native speaker to learn math content in a second language. In this six minute video, Lynda Franco, expert in English language acquisition, takes the listener through a mathematics lesson. The first two minutes of instruction are provided solely in Spanish in a manner typifying teacher-led textbook practice. In the second part of the video, Ms. Franco delivers the same math lesson; however, this time, she uses sheltered instruction techniques to illuminate the content.
  • HELP Math is the first instructional program to successfully incorporate sheltered instruction practices into a comprehensive academic curriculum using technology.
    HELP’s sheltered instruction is designed to improve a student’s understanding of the content, while simultaneously developing their English language proficiency using specific techniques:
    • Increasing comprehensibility by scaffolding the learning, e.g. breaking down concepts into small, comprehensible “learning chunks”; synchronizing visuals, audio and interactivity.
    • Targeting vocabulary development by emphasizing math content language as well as academic English; available to students as hyperlinked words within the instruction, and within an online dictionary of mathematical terms.
    • Providing bilingual support which offers further student support. Teacher has the option of switching on/off.
    • Explicitly teaching problem-solving and test-taking skills, providing multiple opportunities for student responses and immediate corrective feedback when errors are made. 
  • If you would like more information about the National Clearinghouse for English Language Acquisition and Language Instruction Educational Programs NCELA; please click this link.


The H.E.L.P. project is partially funded by the U.S. Department of Education.
46% of this project is funded by the U.S. Department of Education. 54% of the project is funded by non-federal funds.

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