EAL and heritage language

The English as an Additional Language (EAL) Program at ASL focuses on providing English learners with practice and application of key content and language concepts, promotes students’ interactions with each other and with the teacher, and provides opportunities for students to use English while reading, writing, listening, and speaking in new contexts. The EAL classroom environment respects the child’s preference for learning individually, in small groups, and large groups while at the same time pushing for immersion in all aspects of English language learning.

The EAL program:
  • supports the unique needs of multilingual children
  • recognizes and celebrates students who have a home language other than English
  • values the cultural and linguistic experiences of all students
  • is committed to best practice based on research, and is guided by the standards and practices of WIDA
Welcome written in several languages

EAL support

What is the EAL program?

EAL prepares and supports students in becoming proficient in academic English. This enables them to learn and interact inside and outside the classroom, helping them succeed socially and academically. The program encourages individuality and appreciation of other cultures and languages, while giving students the skills they need to fully benefit from the learning opportunities available in the larger school community.

What does EAL support look like?

The EAL program provides listening, speaking, reading, and writing instruction. In the Lower School, students are supported in a variety of ways such as using inclusion model support as well as specialized lessons, in-class scaffolding of grade level curriculum, and progress monitoring. In K1-Grade 4, EAL support is primarily in the classroom to take advantage of the language-rich environment and the oral language development that is taking place for all students. In Middle and High School, EAL students take an EAL class four times in an eight-day class cycle. Depending on scheduling and needs, additional support may be available in a student's classroom at the MS level.

Heritage language

The aim of the Heritage Language Club program is to promote the social and academic development of culturally and linguistically diverse students who want to maintain their home or 'heritage' language. Multilingual students connect and interact during club time, speaking their heritage language while having fun playing, drawing, telling and reading stories and participating in activities. Each language/culture group is mentored by ASL employees, current parents or HS students, linking older heritage language speakers with lower school students. The club is run through IPoP (the lower school after-school program),

Languages on offer over the life of the program have included:

  • Arabic
  • Farsi
  • French
  • German
  • Hebrew
  • Hungarian
  • Indonesian
  • Italian
  • Japanese
  • Mandarin
  • Russian
  • Spanish

Is your home or heritage language not listed here? Volunteer to be a language mentor! Contact Nanette Pakula,

Meet the team


Patricia Elsea
MS/HS EAL Teacher
020 7449 1467
Nanette Pakula
LS EAL Teacher
LS Heritage Language Club Coordinator
020 7449 2934
Darryl Phelps
LS EAL Teacher
020 7449 1219