English Language Learning

A child’s ability to communicate gives them the ability to achieve their educational aspirations.

English Language Learning & eLuma

eLuma offers unparalleled online speech therapy solutions for English Language Learners (ELLs). We know that the key to helping these students is to first see and then unlock their incredible potential, but it all starts with their ability to communicate. Our speech-language pathologists (SLPs) can provide all of the same required services live and online, through a fully-secure, HIPAA-compliant platform, as they can in person — and can do so with a high degree of effectiveness, efficiency and flexibility. We love working with these kids and find great satisfaction in seeing them progress and succeed.

Online Speech Therapist

What does it mean to be an English Language Learner?

English Language Learners (ELLs) are identified as individuals learning English subsequent to their native language. According to the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA: https://www.asha.org/public/speech/development/easl/), it has been projected that by the 2030s, approximately 40% of the school-aged population in the United States will be ELLs. In some areas, such as California, this projection has already been surpassed, with 60-70% of school-aged children speaking a native language other than English.

Federal and state regulations, such as IDEA (Individuals with Disabilities Education Act), as well as the ASHA Code of Ethics, require that Speech-Language Pathologists provide services that are culturally and linguistically appropriate. Speech-Language Pathologists play an important role in distinguishing language disorders from language differences, to avoid false identification of disorders. In order to appropriately evaluate, identify eligibility, and provide services in the areas of speech and/or language, SLPs must understand the natural phenomenon of non-native language acquisition.

The natural process of second-language acquisition includes the following:

  • Interference: English Language Learners may make an error in English due to the influence of the structure of their native language. For example, they may make a literal translation from their native language to English.

  • Silent Period: ELLs often focus on listening and understanding a new language when they are first exposed to it, which may cause them to remain silent for a period of time. The length of the silent period can range from a few weeks to a year or more and tends to be longer for younger children.

  • Code-switching: ELLs may switch between languages over phrases or sentences.

  • Language Loss: As an ELL gains skills as they learn English, they may lose fluency and skills in their native language if that language is not reinforced.


  1. American Speech-Language-Hearing Association. Acquiring English as a Second Language. Available at https://www.asha.org/public/speech/development/easl/.
  2. American Speech-Language-Hearing Association. Issues in Ethics: Cultural and Linguistic Competence. Available at https://www.asha.org/Practice/ethics/Cultural-and-Linguistic-Competence/.

Get a Free Consultation

If you have questions about online school based speech therapy and how it works, we invite you to check out our Why Online Therapy and How Online Therapy Works pages to learn more about how effective, affordable, and popular it really is.

If you want to learn more about how eLuma’s online speech therapy services can help your school district, we’re happy to provide a free consultation to talk through your specific needs.

eLuma School Partnerships Director

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