30th Annual Tutor and Adult Learner Conference

Round 1: 9:45 a.m. – 10:35 a.m.

A Whole Person Approach to Teaching Adult ELLs:  Using Health Literacy to Create Meaningful Context

Successful English language learners are able to express themselves adequately in social and academic settings. However, doing so naturally and appropriately in health contexts can still be a major challenge after weeks, months and years of English classes. This session focuses on creating meaningful context for language learning through health literacy. Participants will gain practical
strategies to use in their English classes or in tutoring sessions in order to enhance linguistic skills, cultural awareness, and ways to positively impact learners' health and provide self-advocacy tools. After all, successful English language teaching/coaching has to embrace the person as a whole.

Jeanine Ntihirageza, PhD, Professor & Coordinator, SAELL and TESOL Northeastern Illinois University

Back Pocket Activities for that Last Minute Class

You find out at the last minute that you need to sub an Adult Literacy or ESL class. You don’t know anything about the class, except more or less the level of the students and you literally are going to walk in without any prepared lesson plans. What do you do? Come to our workshop to fill your back pocket with fun, interactive exercises that you can do without anything except a white board – or maybe just a paper and pencil. Karen and Joanne will lead you in a batch of activities to put in your back-pocket tool kit!

Joanne Telser-Frere, Program Development Manager & Karen Fredrickson, Teacher and Master Tutor Trainer, Literacy Chicago

Math for Adults

Activities that prepare and motivate learners for real world math situations. Participants and their learners will be rewarded with activities that actively engage. Well-planned, multi-sensory activities will help develop crucial math skills. Practice integrating the study of mathematics and English vocabulary with hands-on and collaborative activities using manipulative building rigor and critical thinking.

Michael Matos, Education Technology Director, scaleLIT

Morning Yoga Stretch

Join us for a morning stretch to get your body ready for the day. Everyone is welcome, no prior experience necessary. Give yourself time to relax and rejuvenate!

Becky Raymond, Executive Director, scaleLIT

Universal Design for Learning

In this training, attendees will examine the concepts of Universal Design and how they apply to all areas of our work as adult educators. We will focus on Universal Design for Learning (UDL), creating welcoming spaces, harm reduction, and cultural humility. Attendees will leave with a stronger understanding of these topics while also having the tools they need to implement these strategies into their teaching practice right away.

Keighty Ward, Director of Community Programs, Literacy Works

Talking Leads to Learning

Explore strategies that will support children to build rich and complex vocabulary and practice wayys to talk with children and promote early learning.

Donna Hampton, Program Manager, FAmily STart (FAST) Lerning and Support, UIC Center for Literacy

Round 2: 10:45-11:35

Career Foundations for Crisis-Facing Populations:  How To Include Vulnerable Populations In Career Pathways Programming

Career Foundations is Women Employed’s (WE) career exploration course designed to help develop a career pathway plan leading to sustainable careers using their current program (Adult Education or
Workforce) as an on-ramp. WE created a version of Career Foundations to address the challenges and barriers that crisis populations face and would like to share how adult education and workforce development professionals can effectively serve these populations at the beginning of their career pathways journey.

Efrata Sasahulih, Research Coordinator & Tara Driver, Senior Career Pathways Manager, Women Employed

How Not to Screw Up Teaching Adults to Read

Participants attending this session will leave with a plethora of ideas to engage adult literacy students. We discuss the barriers and impediments to adult education and how to get around them. This
interactive presentation will focus on subjects ranging from what materials to use, to creating a safe, nonjudgemental space for students to learn. We will discuss the methodology used and the role of the teacher/tutor in the classroom. Finally, participants will get a chance to try out some techniques that have proved effective in teaching adults to read. (Note: This presentation is a preview of my upcoming book “33 Ways Not to Screw Up Teaching Adults to Read”.)

Joanne Telser-Frere, Program Development Manager, Literacy Chicago

Story Telling - Beyond Words

We all have stories to share, and there is more than one way to tell them. This interactive workshop will explore creative and practical techniques to stimulate your imagination, while reinforcing literacy
skills and building problem solving muscles. Through engaging exercises, this workshop will help cultivate the storyteller in you!

Tricia Rush, Interactive Literacy Programs and Presentations

Teaching Adult Afghan Students ESL and Literacy

This workshop will focus on teaching English to beginning level adult Afghan students who did not attend school in in their native country and who are developing literacy for the first time in a new
language, English. It will include background information on developing literacy and practical examples of teaching activities that both tutors and classroom teachers can use to help their students develop their spoken English and literacy.

Susan Reynolds, PhD, World Relief Chicagoland

Ten (Not-So-Secret) Rules of English Speech

Do you ever wonder why your ESL students just don’t sound right when they speak, even though they do a decent job pronouncing each word? This session will explore ten “secret” rules of English speech patterns that native speakers follow unconsciously, making English sound “natural” and clear to native speakers. By knowing these rules and imparting them to our students, we can help them make that magical leap into more natural sounding English.

Margaret Goldstein, ESL Teacher and Tutor, Literacy Chicago

What City Colleges Can Do For Adult Learners

In this session participants will learn about the City Colleges of Chicago’s Adult Education programs, including academic, workforce, and non-academic programming and resources. Feel free to join if you are a tutor, adult learner, or staff.

Yolaine Jean, City Colleges of Chicago

Adaptive Tools, Alternative Options, Supportive Guides, and Assistive Technology for Learners with Disabilities

In this session participants will learn options that support Adult Learners with physical, neurological, and intellectual difficulties. We will discuss  program options, adjustments, tools, and resources that are needed to support special needs students academically. Feel free to join if you are a tutor, leadership, or staff member. 

Janee Powell, Adult Literacy Program Coordinator, Anixter Center

Lunchtime Topics - 11:45 a.m. - 12:35 p.m.

- Advocacy: Raising Awareness for Adult Ed

- Connecting You to Your Local American Job Center (English)

- Connecting You to Your Local American Job Center (Spanish)

- The AmeriCorps Experience – Become a Member or Host Site

Round 3: 12:45-1:35

Engaging English Language Learners to Address Abuse and Other Crimes

Curricular Infusion of Real Life Issues (CIRLI) has been shown to increase learner engagement. This workshop will: 1.) Provide a basic overview of Curricular Infusion; 2.) Present information sheets on various crimes. The information sheets have been reviewed by ESL experts to be appropriate for Medium-Advanced English Language Learners; and, 3.) Lead a brainstorm on how participants can meet their learning goals while informing students of various crimes, their rights as crime survivors, and the resources that support survivors.

Radhika Sharma Gordon, Manager of Outreach and Education, Apna Ghar & Adjunct Instructor, Northeastern Illinois University

Get the Job!

Learn How Skills for Chicagoland’s Future is Connecting the Unemployed and Underemployed to the Workforce

At Skills for Chicagoland’s Future, we believe that everyone should have equal access to jobs. We work to make that possible by reducing barriers to employment through partnering with leading
companies ready to hire unemployed and underemployed job seekers. If your students or you, yourself, are looking for employment – this session is for you! We will also discuss how the organization is working to connect our employer partners to training and education partners across Chicagoland.

Dena Giacometti, Director of Workforce and Career Pathways, Skills for Chicagoland’s Future

Learning Experience Approach: How to Use Learner's Words for Activity Content

This training focuses on the Language Experience Approach (LEA). Attendees will learn about LEA and why it is a meaningful activity for learners, how to implement LEA, and how to use LEA as content for ESL lessons. In addition, attendees will have the opportunity to practice brain storming activities. Special focus will be given to using LEA with low level learners. Attendees will leave the training with step-by-step, easy to follow directions for using LEA with learners, sample lessons for intermediate and low-level learners, as well as a list of activities to be used with all learners.

Susan Chestnut, ESL Tutor Trainer, Literacy Works

Literacy Strength Training

In this session, participants will learn exercises grounded in the science of reading that lead to gains in comprehension. Through Scarborough's Reading Rope, we will learn about the many strands that lead to skilled reading and explore strategies to help make these skills more automatic for students.

Laura M Johnson, Literacy Specialist, Glenbard East High School

Money Math Matters: Financial Literacy for All

Real-world money education that delivers financial topics and tools making mathematical educational connections for all learners. Participants will be involved with hands-on activities, apps, and websites that work with concepts such as: opening and managing checking and savings accounts, understanding banking accounts, basic budgeting, and using credit wisely. Gain ideas for activities that your learners can complete and conclude that money math matters!

Michael Matos, Education Technology Director, scaleLIT

The Literate Self: Using Story Writing to Develop Fluency, Confidence, and Voice

This workshop is based on the premise that there is a difference between learning how to write “correctly” and becoming a writer, and that as adult educators, we should teach both! Many adult
learners are uninterested or afraid of writing because they associate writing with completing a task or assignment, in which the emphasis is on achieving the correct answer with the fewest errors. As a result, they tend to write passively, with little agency or voice. This session presents an approach to teaching writing that fosters adult learners’ sense of themselves as competent writers with a distinct voice through which they convey their unique selves. In this workshop we will participate in 2 story writing activities that encourage learners’ self-expression and creativity, while also developing techniques for effective and coherent writing. The presenter will then lead a discussion about how to facilitate these and other story writing activities such that they contribute to learners’ confidence and voice as writers. We’ll also explore how story writing activities can serve as the foundation for teaching writing mechanics with middle to upper level ESL and ABE students, as well as forming the foundation for essay writing in a GED/HSE program.

Janise Hurtig, GED instructor at the Howard Area Community Center, Coordinator of the  Community Writing Project & part-time faculty, DePaul University School for Continuing and
Professional Studies