Truckee Library literacy service update

Rolann Aronson
Special to the Sun

School may be out, but the Truckee Library Literacy Service is moving into summer full steam ahead with our Read Up* Program for adults with literacy and/or English as a Second Language (ESL) needs. Children of adult literacy/ESL students under the age of 5 receive free, age level appropriate books through the Families for Literacy Program as well. The literacy program core value of book ownership is instilled in our students and their families through the free book program.

Since the beginning of 2009, 11 new community volunteers have joined the Library Literacy Service tutoring program for a grand total of 21 tutors. The new tutors have completed the New Tutor Training Class and have been matched with adult students. These tutors have brought many new ideas, excitement and enthusiasm to the Read Up* Program and have already supported their students in making great progress. They are: Nicole Appel, Suzanne Colletto, Lindsey Crawford, Nancy Kautz, Geneva Lewis, Diane Mallory, Paula Messano, Nate Moffett, Jennifer Parker, David Rowe and Diane Rowe.

When I asked our new tutors what they like about tutoring, the answers vary: and#8220;I have truly become aware of the meaning of illiteracy. Innocent people can be taken advantage of when they donand#8217;t understand our language. I am thrilled to see the progress my learner has made as well as her commitment to learn more and to correctly speak and write.and#8221; Another tutor explains: and#8220;The main idea of tutoring is to make my student comfortable when speaking English. I try to make the tutoring lesson relevant to her daily life. All in all, the experience for me is a joy. My students are making progress and feeling a sense of accomplishment.and#8221;

One of our tutors who is working with an adult student with dyslexia remarked: and#8220;Even though it has been a real struggle due to my studentand#8217;s personal circumstances, he has made dramatic progress in reading. Now he has the courage to go to job interviews and actually has a job interview with a major corporation in Truckee.and#8221;

In the Literacy Service it is possible to be a tutor and a student. Two of our tutors are studying algebra from a third tutor: and#8220;I have been studying hard for the math portion of the Accuplacer test scheduled for this week. Being tutored is a memorable and enriching experience that has truly given me the confidence to move forward.and#8221;

We currently have 29 active students in the Read Up Program. In April, several literacy/ESL students met at Tahoe Forest Hospitaland#8217;s Center for Sports and Health to discuss and#8220;coping with stress in these difficult economic times.and#8221; This meeting was organized by Reyna Sanchez Lopez., an advanced literacy/ESL student. Reyna researched and made a very interesting presentation on the subject of how to deal with stress. In addition, the participants enjoyed the Centerand#8217;s interactive exhibit, on loan from the Oregon Museum, regarding the science and benefits of exercise and nutrition. This exhibit was very hands on and a real life solution to reducing stress.

In our Families for Literacy Program, new tutors are asked if they would like to be matched with an adult student who has children who can be included in the literacy lessons and activities. Tutors meet the adult student and child or children at the library and help them choose appealing, age-appropriate books. The tutor encourages the parent to listen to the child read and also models how to read aloud to children, even acting out characters using different voices and mannerisms to keep children interested. Sometimes tutors offer to accompany the parents when they speak with their childrenand#8217;s teachers. Also, we have tutors who arrange cooking experiences for their adult students and include the children in meal preparation.

If you would like to be a volunteer tutor, please call Nevada County Libraries Literacy Specialist, Rolann Aronson, (530) 575-7030.

Truckee Library, 10031 Levon Ave. 582-7846,

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