The Buddy System for ELLs
A teacher-candidate at the University of Carolina at Chapel Hill writes on her blog that it can be helpful for English-language learners who are new to the country to have a buddy in class.
Sometimes the buddy becomes a friend, and "with the difficulty that ELLs have coming into a new culture, having another friend definitely can't hurt their transition," she writes.
It's a strategy I've seen used well in many classrooms. Of course, ELLs still need direct assistance from their teachers as well, but I think it's good for educators to keep in mind that children, as well as adults, can help welcome newcomers.