EAL Coordinator – Lara Talarico

The EAL department caters for the needs of students for whom English is an additional language. These learners include a wide range of students, from total beginners to those with a high level of proficiency in English. They are from diverse backgrounds and cultures as shown by the number of languages spoken in the school community.

At BDB, we cater for our EAL students by offering tailored English as Additional Language lessons, support with homework led by the BDB Young Interpreters and 1to1 meetings with the students and myself to discuss their progress and how they are settling into life at BDB.

If you would like to see me, to talk about EAL at school or about your child’s progress, please feel free to make an appointment to speak with me.

Is my child an EAL student?

An EAL student is a student that has English as additional language. Being EAL does not depend on how fluent a student is in English or whether the child was born in the UK or not. A student is EAL if has a language background different than English, regardless of the language they speak at home.


How can I support my child to improve their English before starting at BDB?

  • Provide your child with an English/home language dictionary.
  • Read regularly to your child in your home language.
  • When your child starts to read at school, hear them read every day. (It does not matter if you are not a confident speaker of English yourself; your child is reading/ talking about the story TO you!). Also, talk about the story in your mother tongue and explain anything that your child does not understand. If your child can read or write in his/her mother tongue before entering our school, continue to develop these skills at home.
  • Your child will be able to borrow books from the Learning Hub. Please look after them carefully. Some bilingual books are also available.
  • Make contact with the parents of other children at school and encourage contact between the children after school. (This can be particularly language enriching if their only common means of communication is English!).

If you have any questions about your child’s progress in English, do not hesitate to contact either myself at ltalarico@bdb.surrey.sch.uk, or the class teacher. We are always willing to talk about your concerns.

Useful English Books

Instant Facts English A-Z of Essential Facts and Definitions Collins) ISBN number 9780007205523

Oxford first Maths Dictionary ISBN number 9780199116430

First thousand words (Usborne) 9781409510307

Any audio storybooks

Useful EAL Websites

Here is a short list of EAL websites, which include FREE activities and worksheets for EAL learners of various ages and stages of English learning. If you Google “language games” many more will come up!