Tutor Tip: Navigating the Road to Student Success

December 20, 2013 at 6:08 PM | Posted in Basic Literacy, Tutoring | Leave a comment
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How much can students progress in the tutoring program?  The answer may lie in what they do at home.

Earlier this month, LCNV offered a three-hour training for a few new volunteers to join our corps of assessment specialists in the literacy program. These individuals perform an important activity for the program—the periodic testing of students to benchmark their progress. The goal is to assess students after every 40 hours of instruction on measures of word recognition and reading comprehension.

So many factors influence the amount a student learns in 40 tutoring hours, but we are convinced that practicing skills during the week is one of them. Adult learners understand the importance of learning to read, but they may believe that tutoring sessions in and of themselves will enable them to meet their goals.  This is not always the case.  The most successful learners routinely practice their skills on their own and complete homework during the week.  Some carve out time at home, others make creative use of minutes spent on public transportation. Tutors who create manageable assignments and convey the importance of doing them can help students join their ranks. 

Practical Application. One assignment that fits neatly into a ten minute time slot consists of studying new sight words and reviewing those already learned. Sight words are those words the learner memorizes so that they can be recognized instantly. Prominent among them are common phonetically irregular words such as the word said. A learner must recognize a word instantly on sight five to ten times for it to be considered a sight word.

The learner (or tutor) prints each prospective sight word on a separate index card, and prepares the reverse side with an illustrative picture and sentence using the word. The learner practices reading a word, using it in a sentence, and then reading the word again. The back of the card serves as both a prompt and a means of checking accuracy.  This technique is modeled by the tutor and practiced until the learner is able to replicate it independently. Tristen Mimiaga, one of our AmeriCorps volunteers, suggests hole-punching small index cards and stringing them together on a metal ring.  “It makes them more portable and easier to pull out of a coat pocket when the student has time,” he said.

It is reasonable to begin by assigning two new words a week as homework and to increase the number of words only when the student shows the capacity to easily master more. To learn more about teaching sight words, view a short video by ProliteracyMedia at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wJiIWhqVHgQ.

One way to increase motivation and jump start the homework habit involves having learners set skill-specific goals (such as the number of new sight words they want to learn in a given period of time) and then participate in tracking their own progress via a check list or graph. To learn more about increasing motivation in English language learners, read an article by Donna Moss and Lauren Ross-Feldman at following link: http://www.cal.org/caela/esl_resources/digests/sla.html

Do you have difficulty getting your student to practice skills between lessons? What ideas do you have for motivating students to do homework or creating assignments that can fit into tight schedules?  I would love to hear from you. Please feel free to comment on this post.

Carole Vinograd Bausell, Ed.D. is an English language and literacy specialist with LCNV.

Carole Holiday Spirit

Literacy Council of Northern Virginia
2855 Annandale Road
Falls Church, VA 22042
www.lcnv.org

Last Chance to Register for RACE FOR A CAUSE!

October 9, 2012 at 10:30 AM | Posted in AmeriCorps, Announcements, Class, Development, ESOL, Family Learning, Teaching, Tutoring, Volunteers | Leave a comment
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Don’t miss your chance to sign up to support the Literacy Council of Northern Virginia for the Acumen Solutions™ Race for a Cause 8K and 1 Mile Fun Run, which takes place this Sunday, October 14, 2012, in Arlington.  

This a great event with a “super” post race event, which includes  yummy food from Anita’s, Chidogo’s, and Whole Foods, as well as fun kids activities AND awesome raffle prizes for “big” kids (must be present to win)! Come support our local Superheroes. We encourage you to sport your favorite “superhero” attire!  Don’t have a cape? Acumen Solutions will also be providing capes to all youth registrants!

We still need 40 registrants to be eligible for race proceeds.  YOU can help us reach our goal!  Join our walking literacy team? 

Not in town? Sponsor a friend or family member as a runner! Every donation – big or small – helps support our cause. Please call or email Suzie Eaton (seaton@lcnv.org) with any questions and go to www.theraceforacause.com to sign up!

Registration Costs

  • 8k: $35 through October 13
  • $40 Race Day
  • 1 Mile Fun Run: $20 Youth (no shirt; gift will be provided!);$35 Adult (8k technical T-shirt)

Registration Packet Pickup @ Potomac River Running Store, Arlington:

  • Friday October 12, 4-8 pm
  • Saturday October 13, 11 am – 4 pm
  • Sunday October 14 (Race Day), 6:30 am – 7:30 am

Course Map

Literacy Council of Northern Virginia
2855 Annandale Road
Falls Church, Va 22042
(703)237-0866
www.LCNV.org

Thank You for Making One for the Books a Success!

October 5, 2012 at 1:51 PM | Posted in AmeriCorps, Announcements, Class, Development, ESOL, Family Learning, Teaching, Tutoring, Volunteers | Leave a comment
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On October 3, the Northern Virginia community came together to honor LCNV’s 50th year of providing much needed literacy services. The evening was filled with a festive and energizing spirit. LCNV held a raffle  for a week-long stay in St. John, which raised nearly $10,000 to help our students. Steve Beggs was the lucky winner!  Attendees also had the unique opportunity to hear from a LCNV student, Fatima, and learn how literacy has changed her and her children’s lives.

The Literacy Council extends a big thank you to Robert Egger who served as Master of Ceremonies, and José Andrés, David Baldacci, and Ric Edelman for sharing how  literacy has impacted their lives. State Senator Barbara Favola presented a proclamation to LCNV, and Congressman Jim Moran and Delegate Mark Keam shared their support.

Highlighting the partnership between LCNV and Wish You Well Foundation, Baldacci stated: “I would urge all of you to do as much as you can. Quite frankly, there could be no higher purpose in the nation.”

During the event, LCNV announced that an anonymous donor challenged the Council this year to raise gifts from new donors, as well as increased gifts from existing donors. The challenge will match these gifts dollar-for-dollar up to $25,000. Andrés was the first to answer this call for support by making the first contribution to LCNV’s challenge grant. Will you join him in helping LCNV meet this challenge?   

Lastly, thank you to the following individuals who were instrumental in making this event a huge success: Mark Troppe, One for the Books Chair; Jan Auerbach; Avis Black; Cathleen Donnelly; Sally Jaggar; Misty Jones; Sarah Kenney; and Robin Walker.

Literacy Council of Northern Virginia
2855 Annandale Road
Falls Church, Va 22042
(703)237-0866
www.LCNV.org

Tonight: One for the Books Gala!

October 3, 2012 at 1:14 PM | Posted in AmeriCorps, Announcements, Class, Development, ESOL, Family Learning, Teaching, Tutoring, Volunteers | Leave a comment
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Please join the Literacy Council of Northern Virginia this evening for our One for the Books gala!

Join LCNV, celebrity chef José Andrés, award-winning author David Baldacci, top-ranked financial advisor Ric Edelman, and nonprofit leader Robert Egger in celebrating 50 years of improving our community through literacy!

DATE: WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 3, 2012 │ 6:30 PM – 9:00 PM

LOCATION: George Washington Masonic Memorial, 101 Callahan Dr., Alexandria, VA 22301

ACCESS: Free parking is available. Closest Metro station is King St.

ATTIRE: Business

TICKETS: Event tickets can be purchased in person tonight at the event, starting at 6 pm.

OPPORTUNITIES THIS EVENING INCLUDE:

  • A raffle drawing for a week-long stay in St. John! Please consider purchasing a $50 chance in person this evening!  The lucky winner will be announced tonight.
  • Book signing by José Andrés, David Baldacci, Ric Edelman, and Robert Egger at the end of the event. Books will be available for purchase on site that evening.
  • Adding a leaf on LCNV’s Giving Tree. Leaves on the tree can be purchased for various dollar amounts. Each leaf contains an item that will aid the Literacy Council in its effort to enrich the lives of those who wish to understand, speak, read and write English.
  • And, finally, there will be a “bookshelf” where you can write the title of your favorite book and put it on the bookshelf. What an opportunity to reminisce about all the favorite books you have read and try to figure out the best one! And you can get ideas for future reads from books listed by other attendees.

Thank you for your participation! We look forward to seeing you tonight at One for the Books!

2855 Annandale Rd., Falls Church, Va 22042│ (703)237-0866 │www.lcnv.org

It’s not too Late to Register for Class!

September 28, 2012 at 12:19 PM | Posted in AmeriCorps, Announcements, Class, Development, ESOL, Family Learning, Student Stories, Teaching, Tutoring, Volunteers | Leave a comment
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DOWNLOAD the Late Registration Flyer

Every LCNV ESOL Learning Centers or Family Learning class turns into its own little community, and every community is like a family.  Lorton Senior Center is one of our healthiest class sites, and I’m certain it’s because of the strong sense of community  among the students.  This past Monday, we had a really great registration, students were lined up outside the door an hour before start time.  Luckily, several of our volunteers arrived a few minutes early to help with forms, testing, and payment.

I believe that sense of community starts with a smile and an inviting gesture to join and share.  One students, who I had taught when I was an AmeriCorps Instructor, arrived at registration with two of her beautiful brown-eyed little boys in tow.  The student’s name is Ceci, and I remember her as the family stone of our class when I taught at Lorton’s former site, Grace Bible Church.  Ceci is an avid smiler, hand-shaker, team-worker, and laugh-sharer.  She constantly stretched her English speaking skills to communicate with classmates from different countries and on many occasions arrived at class with a new student to recruit for classes.

Ceci demonstrates exactly what kind of student our programs work for. Monday was her first time back at class in years, but this is because she took on new opportunities to work, birth a new son, and help her family through some  adjustments.  She still has a complicated life and a limited budget, but we’re still here to help her.  Now, she’s back because she still needs low-level English and LCNV still meets that need.  I know she’ll probably test out of our classes soon and be able to move on to new opportunities, but for now, I’m excited to see her grow and progress and help other students in her class.

You can help us meet the need of other learners and fill all of our other classes, too.  Take a look at our website to share our late-registration information at a grocery store, library, or other community location near you! Late registration will be held at LCNV’s headquarters located in James Lee Community Center, 2855 Annandale Rd, Falls Church, VA 22042 on Saturday September 29nd  from, 3-6pm.

Katie Beckman
Program Assistant
Literacy Council of Northern Virginia
2855 Annandale Rd., Falls Church, VA 22042
(703) 237-0866 x 116
kbeckman@lcnv.org
www.lcnv.org

Robert Egger – Oprah Angel – Lends LCNV a Hand

September 25, 2012 at 8:00 AM | Posted in AmeriCorps, Announcements, Class, Development, ESOL, Family Learning, Teaching, Tutoring, Volunteers | Leave a comment
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On October 3, 2012, non-profit leader Robert Egger will be supporting LCNV at its One for the Books gala. Serving as Master of Ceremonies, Robert will highlight the importance of literacy in all aspects of life. Held at the George Washington Masonic Memorial, One for the Books celebrates LCNV’s 50th year of bringing much needed literacy services to Northern Virginia. Read more to learn about Robert Egger and why he’s received the Oprah ‘Angel’ award.

Robert Egger is the Founder and President of the DC Central Kitchen, the country’s first “community kitchen”, where food donated by hospitality businesses and farms is used to fuel a nationally recognized culinary arts job training program. Since opening in 1989, the Kitchen has produced over 25 million meals and helped 1,000 men and women gain full time employment.

Robert’s book, Begging for Change: The Dollars and Sense of Making Nonprofits Responsive, Efficient and Rewarding For All, was published in 2004 by HarperCollins and awarded the 2005 McAdam Prize for “Best Nonprofit Management Book.”

In Washington, Robert is the founding Chair of both the Mayor’s Commission on Nutrition and Street Sense, Washington’s “homeless” newspaper. In addition to this, he was the Co-Convener of the first Nonprofit Congress, held in Washington DC in 2006.

The Non Profit Times list of the “50 Most Powerful and Influential” nonprofit leaders has recognized Robert from 2006-2009. In 2007, he was honored with the 2007 “Lifetime Achievement” by the Restaurant Association of Metropolitan Washington. In 2004, the James Beard Foundation presented him with the “Humanitarian of the Year” award. Among his numerous recognitions, Robert has been named  a Washingtonian of the Year, Point of Light, and an Oprah Angel.

One for the Books is a unique opportunity to meet and mingle with LCNV supporters like Robert Egger. Celebrity chef José Andrés, best-selling novelist David Baldacci, and top-ranked financial advisor Ric Edelman will also be joining the celebration. Catering will be provided by Fresh Start Catering, and the event menu is inspired by José Andrés.

Purchase your tickets today! Join LCNV, Robert Egger, and fellow supporters on October 3, 2012. Let’s celebrate improving our community through literacy.

Literacy Council of Northern Virginia
2855 Annandale Rd., Falls Church, Va 22042
(703)237-0866 │info@lcnv.org │ www.lcnv.org

Meet Ric Edelman at One for the Books

September 24, 2012 at 10:00 AM | Posted in AmeriCorps, Announcements, Class, Development, ESOL, Family Learning, Teaching, Tutoring, Volunteers | Leave a comment
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The One for the Books gala event is just around the corner! On October 3, 2012, the Literacy Council of Northern Virginia (LCNV) will celebrate its 50th year at the George Washington Masonic Memorial. Ric Edelman,  top-ranked financial advisor and host of The Truth About Money with Ric Edelman, will be celebrating with us. Celebrity chef José Andrés, best-selling novelist David Baldacci, and non-profit leader Robert Egger will also be joining the celebration and advocating for literacy. Readon to learn more about LCNV’s special guest, Ric Edelman.

Barron’s has three times named Ric Edelman the #1 independent financial advisor in the nation (2009-2010, 2012) and nine times (2004–2012) among America’s 100 top financial advisors.  He is a #1 New York Times best-selling author. With more than 1 million copies collectively in print, his seven books on personal finance have been translated into several languages.

He is the chairman and CEO of Edelman Financial Services, which was named by Inc. magazine as one of the fastest growing privately held financial planning firm in the country for three years in a row in the late 1990’s.

Ric’s weekly personal finance talk radio show has been on the air for more than 20 years, and is heard in dozens of markets throughout the country, enjoying more than 1 million listeners every week. In 2012, the show was ranked #2 as the most important weekend-only talk-radio show in America by TALKERS magazine. Ric’s television show, The Truth About Money with Ric Edelman, can be seen on more than 200 public television stations across the country and has won 8 Telly Awards.

In 2004, Ric was inducted into the Financial Advisor Hall of Fame by Research magazine. He also taught personal finance at Georgetown University for nine years and publishes an award-winning monthly newsletter.

Come meet and mingle with Ric Edelman and fellow LCNV supporters! Catering will be provided by Fresh Start Catering, and the event menu is inspired by José Andrés, LCNV will also hold a raffle for a week at a beautiful villa – Calypso del Sol – on St. John. To learn more and purchase tickets visit http://www.lcnv.org/events/one-books.

Note: Biographical information for Ric Edelman  first appeared on his website: http://www.ricedelman.com/

Literacy Council of Northern Virginia
2855 Annandale Rd., Falls Church, Va 22042
(703)237-0866 │info@lcnv.org │ www.lcnv.org

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