Department of Teaching, Learning and Teacher Education


Date of this Version



Published in Science and Children (November/December 2000), pp. 38-41.Copyright 2000 National Science Teachers Association. Used by permission.


The number of reported LEP students enrolled in public and nonpublic schools has been increasing since 1986. In 1997, 22 State Education Agencies (SEA) in the United States reported the percent age of LEP students increased more than 10 per cent, and nine SEAs reported increases of 25 percent or greater (Macias, 1998). Overall, the number of students who speak languages other than English at home increased by more than 68 percent in the past 10 years (Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages, 1997). This article relates to the National Science Education Standards’ Teaching Standard B: Teachers of science guide and facilitate learning. In doing this, teachers recognize and respond to student diversity and encourage all students to participate fully in science learning (National Research Council, 1996).