Date of Conferral
Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)
It is important for elementary teachers to provide quality mathematics instruction for English Learner (EL) students to close achievement gaps. Elementary mathematics teachers in the Keystone School District were struggling to implement instructional practices for EL students in mathematics as evidenced by communications with teachers, administrators, and documents from the state-required action plan. The purpose of this study was to explore the instructional practices and the challenges encountered by teachers related to providing mathematics instruction for ELs. The Sheltered Instruction Observation Protocol Model served as the conceptual framework. The research questions focused on the instructional practices that teachers were implementing related to building background knowledge, student interactions, application, and teacher challenges. This study used a qualitative case study design with data being collected through interviews and observations of 8 teachers in 1st through 5th grades. Data analysis was conducted by coding and thematic analysis. The results showed a gap in practice related to supporting ELs during mathematics interactions and measures of accountability. Teachers reported challenges related to the lack of accurate assessments and appropriate instructional resources for ELs in mathematics. Based on the findings of this project study, a professional development program was developed to provide teachers with the knowledge, skills, and resources to support EL students in mathematics. This study has implications for positive social change by preparing teachers to provide effective mathematics instruction for EL students through the professional development program as well as informing future district decisions related to EL students in mathematics.