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Welcome to the Literacy in Life Training An Introduction to Teaching Adult Learners.

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Presentation on theme: "Welcome to the Literacy in Life Training An Introduction to Teaching Adult Learners."— Presentation transcript:

1 Welcome to the Literacy in Life Training An Introduction to Teaching Adult Learners

2 Tacoma Community House is an organization that began in Tacoma in 1910 as a settlement house to welcome newcomers to Tacoma. TCH offers:  Adult education  Employment assistance  Immigration services  Trainings (like this one– through Literacy NOW)

3 The workshops are funded by:  Office of Refugee and Immigrant Assistance  Fees to individual programs  Tacoma Community House Literacy NOW provides a variety of workshops:  For ESL Tutors  For Literacy Tutors  Intercultural Communication for the Workplace or Library Literacy NOW is a division of Tacoma Community House.

4 Historical Perspectives on Literacy In 1991, according to Congress, to be literate was to have the reading, writing and math skills necessary to function effectively as a worker, family member, and community member. Historically, literacy has been measured based on possession of a high school diploma. According to the 2000 US Census, 571,000 WA adults do not have a high diploma and are not enrolled in school. YEAR Considered Literate If… 1880’s you could sign your name 1930’s you completed the 4 th grade 1960’s you completed the 8 th grade 2000???

5 The 2003 National Assessment of Adult Literacy (NAAL) uses three different literacy classifications: 1.Prose Literacy:  The knowledge and skills needed to perform prose tasks, (i.e., to search, comprehend, and use continuous texts).  Examples include editorials, news stories, brochures, and instructional materials. 2.Document Literacy:  The knowledge and skills needed to perform document tasks, (i.e., to search, comprehend, and use non-continuous texts in various formats).  Examples include job applications, payroll forms, transportation schedules, maps, tables, and drug or food labels. 3.Quantitative Literacy:  The knowledge and skills required to perform quantitative tasks, (i.e., to identify and perform computations, either alone or sequentially, using numbers embedded in printed materials).  Examples include balancing a checkbook, figuring out a tip, completing an order form or determining the amount.

6  Below Basic:  no more than the most simple and concrete literacy skills  Basic:  can perform simple and everyday literacy activities  Intermediate:  can perform moderately  challenging literacy activities  Proficient:  can perform complex and challenging literacy activities Each type of literacy has four different levels of proficiency:

7 Warm-up Activity  Draw a picture of a living space, inside or out. A place from your past, or future.  This activity contains the key principles we need to incorporate when working with adult learners:  It is personal  It is meaningful  It is interactive  There is a concrete hook

8 Traditional Approaches to Adult Literacy Adult Learners are often treated as if they are an empty head full of scores. But adults are more complex than their test scores. They have multiple roles to fulfill in and outside the classroom, and multiple reasons for choosing to be in school. GRE GED 1325 TESL MA

9 Who are my students? Adult learners fulfill multiple roles and have multiple reasons for being in school. Adult learners have three intersecting roles: as family members, workers, and citizens.

10 Why become literate? Adult students typically have four reasons for improving their literacy: 1.Voice:  To express ideas and opinions with the confidence that they will be heard and understood 2.Access to information:  To access information to orient themselves in the world 3.Independent action:  To solve problems and make decisions independently 4.Bridge to the future:  To reflect on their past learning experiences and apply insights to the world as it changes

11 Adult Learners are NOT the Same as children Adult learners differ in many ways from children. They have more independence, heterogeneity, responsibility, life experience, time constraint, and choice in being a part of a classroom. Materials must be adapted to meet the practical and immediate needs of adults and teaching must respect the maturity of students.

12 Adult Literacy Standards These are some broad descriptions that identify what adults need to do to be successful in their roles and purposes

13 Assessment Comprehensive Adult Student Assessment System  CASAS has been used by over 3 million adults. The assessments provide descriptions of adults' general job-related ability in reading, mathematics, oral communication, and writing.  Scores are on a numerical scale ranging from 150 to 250. For more information, see the CASAS skills descriptors links below:  Adult Basic Education Level Descriptors Adult Basic Education Level Descriptors Adult Basic Education Level Descriptors  Writing Levels Writing Levels Writing Levels  Speaking Levels Speaking Levels Speaking Levels

14 Learning Styles  Auditory  Learns through hearing and talking  Examples: listening to a lecture  Visual  Learns through seeing, watching, and reading  Example: Watching the lecturer write information on the whiteboard  Kinesthetic  Learns best while moving large muscles  Example: fidgeting or jiggling leg during a discussion  Haptic  Learns best while moving small muscles  Example: doodling while listening to a lecture  Tactile  Learns best by processing information in context through touch  Example: using braille to read instead of trying to visually process letters

15  To create the most useful learning environment, ask the learner:  Do you like quiet or music when you read or write?  Do you like lots of light?  Do you like dimmer lights?  What kind of space do you need around you?

16 Auditory Learning Strategies  Think aloud – Talk to yourself. Before beginning a project or study session state out loud what you are going to do. You may want to write them down at the same time.  Write and state aloud goals for assignments. Restate out loud as often as needed.  Discuss ideas with a friend or small group. Quiz each other out loud, brainstorm out loud, etcetera.  Say math problems and steps aloud. This will help you retrieve the steps from your memory.  Ask to take oral quizzes, tests, and exams. Some subjects require learning to organize your writing but, in other subjects or assignments, oral presentations are acceptable.  Memorize material by reciting it out loud over and over again.  Free write a rough draft of a paper. Write what you hear in your head or verbalize it into a tape recorder. Make changes such as organization and grammar later when ideas will be there.  Read class material aloud; by yourself, in a group, or with a partner.  Sit in the back or the side of the room.  Make your own tapes of important information from lectures or from readings.  Record the steps of math problems or formulas or say them out loud to study for tests.  Use mnemonics to memorize material. They can include rhymes, songs, or rhythms.  Make flashcards and read them aloud while making and practicing them.

17 Visual Learning Strategies  Work in a well organized and quiet space.  Think on paper. Write down thoughts, ideas, questions, and steps to complete tasks.  Use visual organizers such as cluster maps to organize information and ideas.  Use spelling techniques that concentrate on the shape of the word by outlining it using color.  Keep paper and pencil handy to jot down ideas or thoughts about papers, tests, or projects.  Draw pictures or symbols for complex ideas or information; copy reading materials and take notes on the page.  Highlight important information in one color and new vocabulary in another.  Make eye contact with speaker/presenter and ask questions or write down questions as they occur to you.  Make charts, graphs, and tables out of data and statistical information.  Use flow charts or visual representations to remember steps to problems.  Make posters, videos, or presentation boards for reports when possible.  Use color to organize notebooks or 3-ring binders.  Preview reading by scanning pictures, tables, charts, and headings. Write down questions next to the text.  Create your own flash cards using color and symbols to set apart from one another.  Sit in the front of a classroom away from doors and windows when possible.  Go over notes rewriting them in outline form and compare with a friend for important information.  Make a list or keep a pocket calendar to track assignments and appointments. Mark them complete.  Write down mnemonics such as “sapia”, a word created from the first letter of the oceans of the world.

18 Kinesthetic Learning Strategies  Chew gum while in class or while studying.  Work at a tall table that allows you to stand or move around freely.  Play music in the background. Wear headphones if around others.  Connect physical movement to information to memorize; walk while reciting flashcards.  Take frequent short breaks while studying or change your position every 10 – 15 minutes.  Use a koosh or squeeze-it ball to keep your hands busy, or roll a tennis ball with your feet to keep your body quietly moving during periods where you must remain seated.  When learning new information, make task cards, flashcards, card games or teach someone else.  When memorizing new words, draw each letter in the air with your hand using large muscles and large movements while saying the letters out loud.  Use interactive computer games to help with learning math facts.  When reading a chapter or short story, preview the material by scanning the cover, any pictures or illustrations, and reading the table of contents or headings before reading.  Use multimedia to report on what you have learned when you can by creating videos, posters, models, power point, photographs, and dramatic presentations.  Make large flashcards or charts of information to be remembered or understood.  Create raps or rhyming poems of new information and concepts.

19 Some of your students will have learning disabilities  1 in 5 adults in the US has a learning disability: that’s about 1,333,640 in WA State alone  30-80% of adult learners have learning challenges that negatively impact their learning  So, what do you know about learning disabilities (INSERT What do you know PPT here)

20 The Tutor’s Role  To motivate  To set up a welcoming learning environment  To set the tone for learning  To monitor the learner’s development  To identify and use relevant and purposeful materials  To create timely learning experiences connected to what the learner is ready to learn

21 Activities for the 1 st Meeting  Names:  Exchange names with your student and ask questions about their name: How did you get your name? Do you have any nicknames? Where did they come from? What do you like and not like about you name?  Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow  Student and tutor interview each other. What is one thing you did in your past, one thing you are doing right now, and one this you hope to do in the future?  My Personal Shield  Create a symbol to represent areas of your life. Draw a round shield divided into four parts. In each part, make a picture to represent: 1. The best time I ever had. 2. My greatest accomplishment. 3. My most prized possession. 4. Something I would like to happen.

22 Sources Cited Comprehensive Adult Student Assessment Systems. Skill Level Descriptors. 21 August Frequently Asked Questions. 28 July National Institute for Literacy. 18 August http: Literacy Network of Washington. What do you know? National Center for Educational Statistics. National Assessment of Adult Literacy August Schneider, Melody. Literacy in Life: A Handbook for Volunteer Literacy Tutors. Washington: Literacy Network of Washington, Us Department of Education. 25 th Annual Report to Congress on the Implementation of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act


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