A curriculum proposal for elderly immigrants

Previous research findings indicate that the elderly immigrants’ motivation for learning English is to function independently, engage into meaningful conversations, and integrate into new culture. An informal interview has been conducted with students ranging between 50-70 years old. The participants indicated their struggles in the area of listening, speaking and reading. The overall purpose of this paper is to develop and introduce the concept of a specific curriculum that will serve as a solid ground for creating future lessons to teach English to low-intermediate immigrants. This planned sequence highlights the learning goals and objectives of these L2 learners by placing their needs and reasons of studying English in the center. This 4-week program is intended to improve English language skills, particularly, listening, speaking and reading skills of the target population to develop basic fluency in a culturally sensitive manner. Other curricular standards, which incorporate such language components as vocabulary, grammatical structures and pronunciation, are also strongly addressed in this course as well. The themes and relevant materials are chosen based on the recent findings through needs analysis which will provide opportunities for learners to use and practice the language skills not only inside the classroom but also outside in the community. More findings highlight that it is very effective and beneficial to motivate these students by integrating various instructional activities, useful techniques, and appropriate teaching materials. This paper may also provide teachers of adult ESL programs with necessary and important information about this population for planning relevant programs and lessons.