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English as a Second Language and English Literacy Development

  • This curriculum was issued in 2007.

English as a Second Language, Grades 9 to 12

Course Name Course Type Course Code Prerequisite
ESL Level 1 Open ESLAO None
ESL Level 2 Open ESLBO ESL Level 1 or equivalent*
ESL Level 3 Open ESLCO ESL Level 2 or equivalent*
ESL Level 4 Open ESLDO ESL Level 3 or equivalent*
ESL Level 5 Open ESLEO ESL Level 4 or equivalent*

Note: Each of the courses listed has a credit value of 1.

* “Equivalent” may be an equivalent course of study in other provinces in Canada or in other countries, or a proficiency level determined through initial assessment

English Literacy Development, Grades 9 to 12

Course Name Course Type Course Code Prerequisite
ELD Level 1 Open ELDAO None
ELD Level 2 Open ELDBO ELD Level 1 or equivalent*
ELD Level 3 Open ELDCO ELD Level 2 or equivalent*
ELD Level 4 Open ELDDO ELD Level 3 or equivalent*
ELD Level 5 Open ELDEO ELD Level 4 or equivalent*

Note: Each of the courses listed has a credit value of 1.

* “Equivalent” may be an equivalent course of study in other provinces in Canada or in other countries, or a proficiency level determined through initial assessment

The chart below shows how most English language learners may progress through their ESL and/or ELD courses and into mainstream English courses. Not all students will follow this sequence exactly, and individual students may vary in the rate at which they progress through the levels. Note: The dashed lines represent courses that are not outlined in this curriculum.

Pathways to English

This is a graphic representation of the information provided in the preceding course chart. This graphic maps out all the courses in the discipline and shows the links between courses and the possible prerequisites for them. It does not attempt to depict all possible movements from course to course. No new content is included in this graphic.

English as a Second Language

  • ESL Level 1, Open (ESLAO)
    This course builds on students’ previous education and language knowledge to introduce them to the English language and help them adjust to the diversity in their new environment. Students will use beginning English language skills in listening, speaking, reading, and writing for every- day and essential academic purposes. They will engage in short conversations using basic English language structures and simple sentence patterns; read short adapted texts; and write phrases and short sentences. The course also provides students with the knowledge and skills they need to begin to adapt to their new lives in Canada.
    • Prerequisite: None
  • ESL Level 2, Open (ESLBO)
    This course extends students’ listening, speaking, reading, and writing skills in English for every- day and academic purposes. Students will participate in conversations in structured situations on a variety of familiar and new topics; read a variety of texts designed or adapted for English language learners; expand their knowledge of English grammatical structures and sentence patterns; and link English sentences to compose paragraphs. The course also supports students’ continuing adaptation to the Ontario school system by expanding their knowledge of diversity in their new province and country.
    • Prerequisite: ESL Level 1 or equivalent
  • ESL Level 3, Open (ESLCO)
    This course further extends students’ skills in listening, speaking, reading, and writing in English for a variety of everyday and academic purposes. Students will make short classroom oral presentations; read a variety of adapted and original texts in English; and write using a variety of text forms. As well, students will expand their academic vocabulary and their study skills to facilitate their transition to the mainstream school program. This course also introduces students to the rights and responsibilities inherent in Canadian citizenship, and to a variety of current Canadian issues.
    • Prerequisite: ESL Level 2 or equivalent
  • ESL Level 4, Open (ESLDO)
    This course prepares students to use English with increasing fluency and accuracy in classroom and social situations and to participate in Canadian society as informed citizens. Students will develop the oral-presentation, reading, and writing skills required for success in all school subjects. They will extend listening and speaking skills through participation in discussions and seminars; study and interpret a variety of grade-level texts; write narratives, articles, and summaries in English; and respond critically to a variety of print and media texts.
    • Prerequisite: ESL Level 3 or equivalent
  • ESL Level 5, Open (ESLEO)
    This course provides students with the skills and strategies they need to make the transition to college and university preparation courses in English and other secondary school disciplines. Students will be encouraged to develop independence in a range of academic tasks. They will participate in debates and lead classroom workshops; read and interpret literary works and academic texts; write essays, narratives, and reports; and apply a range of learning strategies and research skills effectively. Students will further develop their ability to respond critically to print and media texts.
    • Prerequisite: ESL Level 4 or equivalent

English Literacy Development

  • ELD Level 1, Open (ELDAO)
    This course is intended for English language learners who have had limited access to schooling and thus have significant gaps in their first-language literacy skills. Students will use basic listening and speaking skills to communicate in English for everyday purposes; develop readiness skills for reading and writing; begin to read highly structured texts for everyday and school-related purposes; and use basic English language structures and sentence patterns in speaking and writing. The course will also help students become familiar with school routines and begin to adapt to their new lives in Canada.
    • Prerequisite: None
  • ELD Level 2, Open (ELDBO)
    This course is intended for English language learners who have had limited access to schooling and thus have gaps in their first-language literacy skills. Students will use their developing listening and speaking skills to communicate in English for a variety of purposes; develop reading strategies to understand a variety of simple texts; produce simple forms of writing; apply increasing knowledge of English grammatical structures in speaking and writing; expand their vocabulary; and develop fundamental study skills. The course will also provide opportunities for students to become familiar with and use school and community resources and to build their knowledge of Canada and diversity.
    • Prerequisite: ELD Level 1 or equivalent
  • ELD Level 3, Open (ELDCO)
    This course builds on students’ growing literacy and language skills and extends their ability to communicate in English about familiar and school-related topics. Students will make brief oral presentations; improve their literacy skills through a variety of contextualized and supported reading and writing tasks; distinguish between fact and opinion in short written and oral texts; complete short guided-research projects; and engage in a variety of cooperative learning activities. The course will also enable students to strengthen and extend their study skills and personal-management strategies and to broaden their understanding of Canadian diversity and citizenship.
    • Prerequisite: ELD Level 2 or equivalent
  • ELD Level 4, Open (ELDDO)
    This course extends students’ literacy skills and ability to apply learning strategies effectively, and teaches them how to use community resources to enhance lifelong learning. Students will communicate with increased accuracy and fluency for a variety of academic and everyday purposes; perform a variety of guided reading, writing, and viewing tasks; and use media and community resources to complete guided-research projects. This course further develops the critical thinking skills students will need to participate in Canadian society as informed citizens.
    • Prerequisite: ELD Level 3 or equivalent
  • ELD Level 5, Open (ELDEO)
    This course provides students with skills and strategies that will allow them to continue their education successfully and pursue pathways to employment that may involve apprenticeship and/or cooperative education programs. Students will communicate orally and in writing on a variety of topics; perform a variety of independent reading and writing tasks; interpret and create media texts; and use a range of media and community resources. This course also expands the critical thinking skills students will need in order to contribute to Canadian society as informed citizens.
    • Prerequisite: ELD Level 4 or equivalent