Literacy Volunteers of Greater Augusta (LVA) offers a tutor training program that is focused on ways to explore the adult learning process and supports a learner-centered instruction. The training incorporates strategies that are especially effective in working with adult learners and suggests ways to use “real-life” materials in lesson planning. Training is based on material presented in the 8th edition of Tutor, published by New Reader’s Press, ProLiteracy’s publishing division, Syracuse, NY. Tutor is a professionally designed and field-tested approach that provides:
- a theoretical and attitudinal base for working with adults;
- demonstrations, discussions and rationale of needed skills and approaches for tutoring;
- opportunities to practice skills in a collaborative environment; and
- a full compliment of tools and case studies that will deepen learning.
LVA also offers training following the I Speak English, Fifth Edition, by New Readers Press which is a guide to teaching English (listening, speaking, reading and writing) to speakers of other languages.
LVA offers training in a model that includes more frequent and shorter tutor training workshops to better address the busy schedules of our volunteers. We hope this will give more options to our volunteers as well as ensure a more consistent flow of new tutors to match the steady intake of new students.
All volunteers are required to participate in a 1½ hour volunteer orientation workshop. The focus of this workshop is to learn about the needs for adult literacy in our area and to introduce our agency and programs. Following this orientation, volunteers can decide what role they would like to take in our organization – tutoring a student, assisting with fundraising, marketing, writing grants, joining our board of directors, or office support. There is no fee for the orientation workshop.
Volunteers who wish to become a literacy volunteer tutor, either at one of our Community Literacy Labs or with an individual student, are required to participate in a 5-hour tutor training workshop.This workshop is most often divided into 2-evening sessions (usually 5:30-8pm on Tuesday/Thursday or Monday/Wednesday) and often takes place the week following an orientation workshop. In the late winter, we offer this 6-hour workshop on a Saturday from 9am-3:30pm. Please see the Calendar for the dates of the next training programs.
We ask for a $10 donation for this workshop to cover the cost of the book (Tutor, 8th Edition) and other materials/handouts.
After a volunteer completes the tutor training workshop, the executive director and the volunteer together choose an appropriate student. Matches are based on preferences and availability of both tutor and student. The executive director may attend the first tutoring session with the new tutor to make initial introductions, discuss student goals, meeting time and place, and suggest different materials that the tutor might use in the first few sessions.
The executive director is always available to answer questions, provide information and support to all tutors. Tutors are also asked to attend at least one tutor support workshop throughout the year.These 2-hour workshops usually take place on a weekday evening and focus on a specific topic of interest such as using technology in tutoring, understanding learning disabilities, tutoring English Language Learners as well as providing a forum for tutors to discuss successes and frustrations, ask questions, get ideas and check out new material in our New Readers Library.
Volunteer and potential volunteer tutors are encouraged to take advantage of the free courses offered through the ProLiteracy Education Network (EdNet). The service provides dozens of online professional training courses that volunteer tutors can complete at their own pace.
Trainer Certification System
The Trainer Certification System supports excellence in training by providing trainers with a path for growth and development in training skills and adult education practices. Currently, Trainer Certification is offered. To become a certified trainer, you will:
- Tutor an adult student in basic literacy or English as a Second Language (ESL), or other basic skills.
- Apprentice with a certified supervising trainer.
- Participate in the Literacy Volunteers of Greater Augusta (LVA) Trainer Workshop: Basic Training Skills or LVA Training of Trainers.
- Be recommended by your local literacy program.
For more information about Tutor Training opportunities at LVA, please contact Virginia Marriner, Executive Director by calling 626-3440 or e-mailing firstname.lastname@example.org