NOTES FROM THE CHAIR
Dear Volunteers and Friends,
The fall season is usually the slowest for the
Literacy Council. Both volunteer and student applications are waning
with the moon. Holiday vacations are getting closer and head colds
are sure to be putting many folks out of circulation for a while. I
better start boosting my vitamin C rations.
So far this year, the Council has provided 400 hours
of volunteer service to the community. Not bad for this small
all-volunteer organization. Seventeen students have received help in
English skills, GED preparation, and/or US Citizenship. We are
looking forward to serving many more after the holidays.
Sadly, tutor Mike Murray's student John Johnson
recently had a stroke and passed away. They were meeting regularly
from March through August and making good progress. I'm sure John's
family and friends appreciate Mike's devotion of time and effort.
Thank you Mike for your service and willingness to request another
As always, contributions of time and money to the
Literacy Council from our newsletter readers is appreciated. Before
you know it, 2016 will arrive. The Literacy Council will greet the
new year with optimism. And we will start it off with your next
issue of TUTORS!
We offer individualized tutoring for Basic Reading,
GED, ESL, Workforce Development Classes, and Citizenship. Our Workforce Development class offers training in
Microsoft Office and Résumé Building.
If you know of anyone who might benefit from our
program, please let them know about our services. The Literacy
Council serves all of Jackson County.
LITERACY COUNCIL OF
--------------------------------------------- Bob Burger
---------------------------------- Nancy Calcagno
Newsletter Editor -------------------------Nancy Calcagno
FUN WITH WORDS
What word in English has 9
letters that keeps producing another word when you remove any one
letter from it?
startling - starting - staring -
sting - sing - sin - in - I
An ambigram is a word or words
that can be read in more than one way or from more than a single
vantage point, such as both right side up and upside
approximately means "Fantastic" and was invented for a movie) is not
the longest word in English.
type of lung disease caused by inhaling ash and dust).
A pangram sentence is one that
contains every letter in the language.
"The quick, brown fox jumps over
the lazy dog."
What is the shortest complete
sentence in the English language?
A palindrome is a word, phrase,
number, or other sequence of characters which read the same
backwards or forwards. Allowances may be made for adjustments to
capital letters, punctuation, and word dividers. Here are a few
Was it a car or a cat I
A semordnilap (palindromes
spelled backward) is a name coined for words that spell a different
word in reverse.
A root is part of a word that has a meaning of its
own. Many roots originate from ancient Latin and Greek words. You
can figure out words you don't know by looking inside them for the
roots you do know.
Below are a few common roots to
memorize and share with your students.
||to bear/to carry|
Literacy Council of Jackson
P.O. Box 615
Medford, OR 97501
TO COMMA, OR NOT TO
If we place a comma before the word "and" at the end
of a list, this is known as a "serial comma" (also known as an
"Oxford comma" or "Harvard comma"). For example: "I drink coffee,
tea, and wine."
Although the "serial comma" isn't always necessary,
I prefer to use it to add clarity to the sentence and it makes lists
easier to read. Primarily, it is newspapers that allow the final
comma to be omitted in order to save space. Although, it is
essential to use a serial comma when leaving it out would create
confusion. For example: "Sarah is excited to try the new coffee
flavors: Pumpkin Pie, Raspberry White Mocha and Peaches and
Serial commas are not only used at the end of a
list, but should also be used to separate authors' name in
parenthetical and in-text citations and reference list entries. So
the question is: "When do I use the serial comma , or when do I
leave it out?"
As a baby-boomer, I was taught to use the serial
comma, but this practice has been debated and/or discouraged by many
newer style guides, and rules do change. Either method can be
correct, but I will continue to use it for clarity and consistency
in my writings.
Submitted by Nancy Calcagno
Rather than feed the student answers,
probe or prompt the student to remain in an active role in the
tutoring process. Engage him/her in a joint exploration of problems
and concerns. Verbalization builds self-confidence and enhances
learning. The tutee should be talking about 75% of your session.
(You should be talking only about 25% of the time.) Don't turn your
tutoring time into just another class lecture.
Remember that the style and content of
the material to be learned should be adjusted to the individual
being tutored. Be resourceful and use initiative in devising or
trying new methods and approaches to learning the subject at
ANOTHER TUTORING TIP
One of the techniques I used in my ESL class to
develop writing skills is a cartoon, or series of cartoons, that
tell a story. It is up to the students to write - in English, of
course - their version of the story. It can be a little
intimidating, but it encourages them to learn more words to get the
As an example, one picture shows a man waiting in
front of a bank on Court Street and the other is of a woman waiting
in front of a courthouse on Bank Street. Why do they each look
angry? What story can you come up with? They say a picture is worth
a thousand words, but I'll settle for less.
Submitted by Bob Burger
We are currently in need of more tutors. If you are interested in becoming a volunteer, we would
love to hear from you.
A tutor will typically spend one
or two sessions per week with an adult learner. These sessions
usually run 60 to 90 minutes long. A tutor and an adult learner
often work together for 6 months to 2 years.
There are no
credentials required. Simply attend free training sessions and learn
how to be an effective tutor!