Support from the Redlands community has helped the Redlands Adult Literacy Program provide one-to-one tutoring which helps adults learn to read and write in English. Adults seeking help with their reading and writing skills often want to get a new or better job, assist their children with their homework, or further their own education. The Redlands Adult Literacy Program has a wonderful team of trained volunteer tutors who help these adults reach their unique literacy goals.
The Redlands Adult Literacy Program’s tutor volunteers and materials assist learners in overcoming lifelong reading and writing challenges. Adult learners in the program have shared their gratitude for their new reading skills that allow them to read their mail, product labels at the grocery store, restaurant menus, or books to their young children. Tutors focus 100% of their efforts on helping learners meet their individual literacy goals. The strong connection between tutors and learners helped learners to continue to improve their literacy during the pandemic by meeting with their tutors remotely over the phone, Zoom, or other applications. Today, tutor and learner teams can choose to continue to meet remotely or at the Library.
Some adults who ask for literacy assistance have little or no foundation in reading. At this level, participants learn the sounds of the letters of the alphabet so that they may read and write common words for the first time. Others who join the program are able to read words, but cannot comprehend longer texts. By working with a tutor who properly introduces reading passages, models fluent reading, and checks in with the learner by asking pointed questions about the readings, learners improve their understanding of the stories they read.
Adult learners join the program with a wide range of writing needs. Some learners only know how to write their names but want to learn how to fill out forms or write notes to friends or family members. At the opposite end of the spectrum, advanced learners join the program to learn how to organize and improve their writing skills so that they may pass a standardized exam, write coherent emails at their jobs, or advance their own education by going to college. One-to-one tutoring provides opportunities for all learners to work on their individual writing goals regardless of their current writing level.
The literacy program supports tutors by providing continuing education and networking opportunities through round table meetings and workshops enabling tutors to gain ideas and strategies to help learners work toward their goals. The program supports literacy teams by providing materials at a range of levels from basic phonics workbooks through advanced grammar and writing materials. All literacy materials are available to borrow at the Library and are listed on the literacy webpage (www.akspl.org/literacy).
The Redlands community can celebrate when adult learners read their first book or newspaper article, write their first letter, get a better job, or advance their own or their children’s education. Improved literacy skills enable adult learners to change their own and their families’ lives. The Redlands Adult Literacy Program’s services are made possible by the generous support of volunteers, donors, the Friends of A.K. Smiley Public Library, the Library Endowment Fund, the Redlands City Council, and the State of California. Working together, the lives of individuals and families are changed for the better!
If you would like to volunteer with the Redlands Adult Literacy Program, please contact Diane Shimota, Adult Literacy Coordinator, at (909) 798-7565 ext. 4138 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. To learn more about the adult literacy program, contact Ms. Shimota about the next volunteer tutor orientation scheduled for September 16, 2021.
If you know of someone who needs help with their literacy, please encourage them to take the first step in changing their lives by contacting the Redlands Adult Literacy Program. All tutoring services are free and confidential.