The Open Book - Masthead
Holiday Issue 2011

The Open Book

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Annual Holiday Party

Tutor's Corner

Fall Fundraisers

Volunteers Voices

Become a Sponsor

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2011: Busier than Ever!

The year 2011 was a busy time for Literacy Volunteers of Greater Augusta. Here are some of the highlights:

Happy Holidays and warmest wishes to our LVA tutors, students, volunteers, board members, friends, and families! Have a happy and safe holiday season!

2nd Annual Holiday Party

Holiday Party at LVATutors, students and their families, board members, and friends of Greater Augusta LVA, gathered the evening of December 6th in the LVA's Spruce Street office to celebrate the season.

Jenny Small, the unofficial hostess of the evening, welcomed everyone who came in the door and made sure no one was left out.

Partygoers enjoyed good food and good conversation, catching up on what was going on at the office and sharing what was new in their own lives.

The whole office hummed with good cheer, warm and friendly and full of people drawn together in the spirit of community.

All too soon, the evening drew to a close, and we had to say good night and goodbye.

Thank you to everyone who was able to come! We hope to see you again next year!

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Tutor's Corner

6 – d – p – 3 – s – 5 – 9 – b

Does your student often reverse these letters and numbers in reading and writing? Many of our students have dyslexia, a specific type of learning disability which means that there is “an impairment in the brain’s ability to translate written images received from your eyes into meaningful language.” ( A common sign that someone may have dyslexia is trouble distinguishing similar looking letters and numbers.

Although there is no “cure” for it, there are a number of specific things a tutor can do to help their student with their struggles. A few suggestions from the British Dyslexia Association include:

Check out their website,, stop by our office, or give us a call for more tips and strategies in working with your student!

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Fundraising Fun: Fall Scrabble Tournament

One of the teamsThe second annual Fall Scrabble Tournament was a great success. Held in the UMA Student Center’s Fireside Lounge, the Scrabble Tournament saw nearly forty people joining our volunteers for an afternoon of word-making fun.

Eight social teams and four competitive teams played for the win. (One of the competitive teams, Weird Wordies, had originally signed up as a social team, but graciously agreed to play competitively to even out the number of teams. Thanks again!) The competition for points was friendly but fierce, even among the social teams, and everyone waited with great anticipation for the final scores to be tallied. In the end, team Cy & I swept the competitive teams away, leading by 76 points, and the number one social team, SHEnanigans, beat out the rest of their division by 19 points.

But, even more exciting than the scores, was that the Fall Scrabble Tournament raised over $800! This money came from registrations, donations, and pledges collected by the Scrabble players, and it goes right back into our programs, at Literacy Volunteers of Greater Augusta.

Our thanks go out to everyone who helped make this event the fun, successful time it was. Special thanks go out to Jodi Williams at UMA, and to all the volunteers who donated their time and energy. We couldn't have done it without you!

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Volunteers Voices

Tutor Talk

by LVA Tutor, Elaine Bourne

“I want to be able to say things and write like you do.”

This was my student’s tutoring goal, his verbal response, about six weeks into our pairing. Flattered, I probed further and discovered the stark differences between our educational opportunities and life circumstances.

I was momentarily disheartened and unsure of the best way to proceed. I decided to focus our discussion on ways I could help him develop his communication skills and discover his own voice.

Spelling was where we agreed to begin, and it has been a journey for both of us.

The Patterns in Spelling series, available at the LVA office, is our roadmap. Each lesson in the series covers various patterns commonly found in words, utilizing a mix of sight words, word building and listening exercises, and sentence writing. Spelling rules are interspersed throughout the exercises. My student is responding well to the diversity of the lessons and is able to see his progress.

He isn’t the only one learning. I’m rediscovering the “why” behind what is routine for me. (Did you know that “[i]f you have a word which has one syllable, one vowel, and ends in one consonant, [you] double the last consonant before adding –ing”, unless it is a “w” or an “x” ?) 

More importantly, I’m discovering the joy of watching an individual learn and grow into himself.

Become a Sponsor in this Season of Giving

Thank YouThese days, we are all having to do more with less, both as individuals and as organizations.

You may have already received a letter asking you (or your business) to become a sponsor. We ask for this commitment only once a year. But what does it mean to sponsor the Literacy Volunteers of Greater Augusta?

Sponsorship is a great opportunity. Information about your business is distributed in our publications and at all our events for a full year. There are also additional bonuses, depending on your level of fiscal commitment.

Many thanks to Macdonald Page &Co, Silver Star sponsors, and to Saunders Manufacturing, Bronze Star sponsors. These two outstanding businesses have stepped forward and have given generously to help fund
our programs. Thank you!

For more information about sponsorships, or to become a sponsor, please call us at (207) 626-3440.

Quotes of the Month:

"Whatever the cost of our libraries, the price is cheap compared to that of an ignorant nation."
- Walter Cronkite

"I'm not a teacher: only a fellow traveler of whom you asked the way. I pointed ahead - ahead of myself as well as of you."
- George Bernard Shaw

"Learning is like rowing upstream; not to advance is to fall back."
- Chinese Proverb

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