Fisher had the same dilemma in which the students in the middle school where she was teaching were fluent in communicative language but were struggling in their classes. Being enrolled in the academic programs at the international school put higher demands on the students' use and understanding of the English language. Therefore, Fisher, who was a social studies teacher, had to teach both the English language and the social studies content in order for her students to learn and work independently with the schoolwork (64).
Fisher started with proposed goals, addressing the students' learning needs. Going back to the second chapter, "A framework of course development processes," Fisher addressed the first and second steps- assessing needs and determining goals and objectives, respectively. Although her proposal was accepted, she realized that she did not fully address the second step because the goals and objectives were written vaguely, not specifically stating what it is to be learned by students in both content and language.
Therefore, she re-develops her goals and objectives through research of methods done by other teachers and with the reflections of her own experiences, and she mapped them out until she came up with a specific and workable set of objectives in order to attain her goal which is to develop learners who are "competent autonomous functioning in the mainstream" (70). Also, in adherence to the fourth step in developing a course, Fisher also addressed the roles of her students on "Appendix A: Pilot-year proposal" on page 75. With the final pages of her experience, she includes tools that she incorporated in her teaching in the attempts to her class goal; these included a "student contract"- a list of assignments and tests, a "correction worksheet"- developing not only knowledge of the content but competency in the language, a "map-around group"- rubric type, a checklist for peer editing, and "information sharing"- a group activity.
I admire her development of lessons in which teachers and students can clearly see the objectives, and students would see what is expected of them through an organized and explicitly stated set of criteria. She addresses the needs of her students, which is to develop content knowledge and to develop academic language.
Going back to my experiences as an instructor- I was a part-time tutor to some middle-school and high-school ESL students who were attending private schools here on Guam. The schools did not have an ESL curriculum, and the students were given the exact same materials as their classmates and were expected to perform in just about the same level. The "elephant in the face" problem was that the students had just come from Korea and were not only lacking in using academic language, but were also struggling with English conversational language. Overtime, although they developed communicative skills with English, academic language was much more difficult to develop. So, did they enjoy school? I would guess not because their learning needs were not met.