Experiences of Elementary-Aged English Learners & Their Families Due to the Remote Learning Conditions Caused by the COVID-19 Pandemic
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This paper focuses on the experiences of elementary aged English learners during their time in remote learning due to the COVID-19 pandemic. It focuses on the reasons for which English language learners in the United States might have had a more difficult time transitioning and participating in remote learning in comparison to their English-proficient peers. Based on interviews conducted (with elementary English learners, their parents, and their teachers), online blogs (ran by local community organizations and teachers), and others’ research on this topic, it was concluded that English learners had a difficult time during remote learning due to a lack of devices and internet connection, limitations due to family and home situations, and culture and language barriers between the families and schools. There were also some positives for English learners and their families that came out of these learning conditions such as a better understanding of the academic curriculum from the parents’ perspective and an increase in technological skills and resources for English learners. This information is valuable since English learners make up 10% of the K-12 students in the United States, and that number continues to rise every year. These students may have already been falling behind their peers in pre-pandemic times. It is important to take note of their experiences during the pandemic to assure that these students are receiving additional support, to ensure that they do not continue to feel left behind and frustrated like many did during remote learning due to the COVID-19 pandemic.