Understanding Language aims to heighten educator awareness of the critical role that language plays in the new Common Core State Standards and Next Generation Science Standards. The long-term goal of the initiative is to increase recognition that learning the language of each academic discipline is essential to learning content. Obtaining, evaluating, and communicating information; articulating and building on ideas; constructing explanations; engaging in argument from evidence—such language-rich performance expectations permeate the new Standards.
We seek to improve education for all students—especially English Language Learners. To that end, we are synthesizing knowledge and developing resources that help ensure teachers can meet their students’ evolving linguistic needs as the new Standards are implemented. We are bringing together leading thinkers, researchers, practitioners, and policy makers in the fields of language, learning, and the subject areas to explore and promote pragmatic approaches to addressing these issues systematically.