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PETALLs Conferences

Practices That Improve the Education of ELLs

Petalls Conference

On Wednesday March 8, 2017, PETALLs held its second conference at the UMass Lowell Inn and Conference Center.

Patrick Proctor, a faculty member from the Lynch School of Education at Boston College, gave the keynote address, which was followed by three interactive break-out sessions.

Proctor’s keynote began with the chronology of language programs in Massachusetts (pdf), including bilingual education and the 2002 ballot referendum that replaced bilingual education with sheltered English instruction. Proctor also provided a handout guide to all attendees; “Dialogic Reasoning, Student Talk That Promotes Language Development and Text Comprehension” (pdf).

Following the keynote, participants could attend one of three interactive presentations focused on classroom practice:

  1. Engaging Students with Limited or Interrupted Formal Education (SLIFE) in Rigorous Academic Conversation
  2. Planning and Implementing Secondary Math Instruction for English Learners
  3. Preparing to Teach English Learners: Experiences of Pre-service and Early Career Teachers

For more details on the conferences, please visit the PETALLs newsletter page.

You will need Adobe Acrobat Reader to view any pdf files. It can be download for free from the Adobe website.

Preparing Excellent Teachers for All Language Learners Conference 2017

March 8, 2017

Keynote Speaker: C. Patrick Proctor, Associate Professor
Lynch School of Education, Boston College

To learn more please email:

Previous Years' Conferences

OCTOBER 7, 2015

Conference Theme

The purpose of this conference was for local educators to develop classroom and school practices that enhance the education of English Language Learners. At this conference, they were able to add to their professional expertise and learn new instructional strategies to help create an effective learning environment for your ELLs.

Learn strategies that you can immediately implement in your own school and classroom!

Practices shared at the conference included instructional strategies to support ELLs in ESL and content -area classrooms, innovative ways to connect with the families and communities of ELLs, and other research-based practices that improve educational opportunities and outcomes for ELLs.

Who Benefits?

Teachers (Content-area and ESL), Pre-service Teachers, Administrators, Teacher Educators, Paraprofessionals, and anyone who is interested in improving the education of ELLs.

Conference Schedule


Susan O’Hara, Ph.D. presented a practice-focused keynote address. Susan is the co-author of Common Core Standards in Diverse Classrooms: Essential Practices for Developing Academic Language and Disciplinary Literacy (with Jeff Zwiers and Robert Pritchard). She has more than 20 years of teaching experience.
Registered conference attendees also received a copy of Common Core Standards in Diverse Classrooms: Essential Practices for Developing Academic Language and Disciplinary Literacy.

Poster Sessions

The poster sessions featured practices proven to be effective with ELLs and ELL stakeholders. These practices can be implemented in your own classroom and school.