Homework Sharing

March 28, 2010

Hi fellow tutors,

I am tutoring a wonderful student named Rufus who is at Wilson Level 1.2A, and wanted to let you other tutors know that I recently put some things in the Homework Sharing Notebook (in the Library) that I’ve worked on with Rufus.  The first thing is a lot of sentences I’ve come up with for reading and dictation.  I’ve found the ones in the Wilson books great, but needed more, so I’ve written some, and thought I’d share them.  Sight words are in red and vocabulary words are in black.  I also got an idea for homework from the notebook of scrambling sentences and letting Rufus try to unscramble them (thanks, Rebecca!)  Well, he loved doing this and asked for more of those.  So I wrote out more of those and put those in the notebook, too.

I think if we all take a few minutes now and then to run off a copy of some of the more successful homework sheets we’ve come up with, we could save each other some time.  There are lots of good ideas in that notebook!

Betsy Dain

Veleda’s Speech

March 29, 2009

Here is a video of the inspiring speech Veleda T. gave at the DLC’s 2008 Leaders in Literacy breakfast, which was held at the Washington Duke Inn.


Emmett Jackson, DLC adult literacy student and advocate, was the guest speaker at the Triangle United Way (TUW) annual awards event at the RBC Center in Raleigh, NC in April 2008. The event honored companies who helped support the TUW’s annual campaign. Mr. Jackson received a standing ovation from the audience of more than 300 people. Read more about Mr. Jackson here.

My Main Goals

December 19, 2008

One of my goals is to stop working my second job and spend more time with my family. But first, there are some things I have to do.

I have to work on my finances by making sure I have a budget plan and have money in the bank. I think that when I have a budget plan and money in the bank it will be easier for me to focus on my reading and writing skills.

One of my most important goals is to get my drivers license, but first I have to pass the test for my learners permit.

I need my license because sometime I get caught in difficult situations when my husband is not available to take me places.

My other most important goal is becoming an American citizen. To get my citizenship I have to work on my reading and writing skills.

I am working hard on these skills. First I signed up for a literacy program and then later I hired a tutor to speed up the process.

Soon I will be sending my citizenship application along with the money I saved up. Once I do that I will wait for immigration to contact me.

In the mean time I am studying for the U.S history and government test.

I am feeling good about where I am right now. I am happy with the progress that I am making and the people that I am working with.

I think that by 2009 I will accomplish all my goals.

by Carol

Earl Mills, Poet

Earl Mills, Poet

Emmett and I met an inspiring adult literacy student and poet at a conference we attended last year. The student’s name is Earl Mills, and he lives in New Bern, NC. Earl takes classes at the Craven Literacy Council, and he will publish his first book of poems soon. His blog (http://earlmills.wordpress.com) is an inspiring resource for literacy tutors and students. It tells the story of his journey to literacy and his growth as a poet, and it shares many of his poems.

Here is the beginning of one of his poems:

My Name is Illiterate

By Earl Mills

I’m red, yellow, black and white
From every nation and tongue
Old middle age and young.

I have no boundaries
Generational or race
My father couldn’t read
Now I take his place.

You look for me
In all the wrong places
For I’m closer than you think.

To read the rest of this poem and others by Earl Mills, CLICK HERE


August 12, 2008

Gramma used to call my brother and me her little day brighteners. We’d run over to her house, eat her candy, play endless card games, listen to her recreate the old Main Street (back when times were good), and make Grampa laugh until he cried. They were the best times. Love and sweetness and warmth and laughter. And a little guilt about not running over more often, but not too much. And the candy made that better, too.

Christine brings me back to those times. Each lesson she tells me more about her children and her grandbabies, who are brilliant and perfect and no trouble at all. Her grandbabies beg for her to spend the night, so they can snuggle into her bed and make her proud by following her instructions on how to pour juice on their own – without a drop spilled. She brings it all back – the unconditional love, patience, laughter, warmth, joy, life, admiration, and abundance. She brightens my day, and makes me think of this poem:


all this time
the sun never says to the earth,

“You owe me.”

what happens
with a love like that–

it lights the whole


Trip to the Museum

June 3, 2008

Mahmood and I made a field trip to the Nasher Museum near Lakewood Baptist Church and Duke University to get out of the classroom and celebrate his climb from Step 2 to Step 3. Congratulations!

IT’S FREE for Durham residents and folks like Mahmood who go to school in Durham. He just used his student notebook as his school ID.

We walked around the “Birth of Cool” exhibition and the permanent collection. While I was more enchanted with the modern stuff, Mahmood much preferred the older works. We read the brief descriptions together, tried to find the oldest pieces (some dated back 2000 years), and talked about the various forms art takes. Mahmood taught me about some of the history of iconic images in Islam tradition, and we wondered how some of the more unusual artifacts might have been used back in the day.

All that stimuli made sitting down to snacks at the Nasher cafe all the nicer. It was a break from the regular classroom routine. Sitting outside on a nice spring day, we talked about family and summer plans over soup and salad, before reviewing through a few pages of homework. Then we headed to Lakewood for the Spring Celebration, feeling pleased that we had already given each other some quality time outside of class.

My tutor is a wonderful tutor. She taught me how to do reading and spelling and build my confidence up. I hope I get another tutor great like her. Thank you center for helping me.


Scribed by Diamond.

To say that Emmett was excited about today’s primary would be a HUGE understatement. After 56 years here in the U.S., he voted for the very first time, patted his ‘I voted’ sticker, and yelled out, “I’ve got the right! I’ve got the right!” He added, “I’ve got the power, now. Now I can get some things done.” He worries that too many people in this country don’t realize that they have the right to vote, regardless of whether or not they have been in prison, have a record, or can read well. He hopes that one day even prisoners – those who are still locked up – will be able to cast their votes, too. We should all count.

A couple weeks ago, Emmett and I attended the civic literacy workshop at the DLC to learn more about the candidates and the voting process. Then we went over all of the choices together and filled in a sample ballot. Emmett decided that he would be more comfortable if I went with him to the voting booth, so we filled out the ballot together and then fed it into the machine. I couldn’t help asking him several times if he was absolutely sure about his choice for democratic candidate (he’s for Clinton, while I’m for Obama), but he just chuckled and said he was sure. Ah well. As he put it, he’ll be happy to have any democrat back in office. I’ll just celebrate the right to disagree with him – two adults with different but equal opinions – and the right to voice them, loudly.

Emmett & Rebecca