Professional Development for Educators



First Literacy supports Adult Basic Education in Massachusetts by planning, hosting and facilitating free Professional Development Workshops for ABE teachers, program administrators, coordinators, and counselors.

Our recent Digital Literacy Instruction professional development workshop
Our recent Digital Literacy Instruction professional development workshop

While we plan our PD offerings a year ahead based on formal data collection, we are uniquely positioned to respond to the interests and needs of adult basic education programs as they arise and can add sessions quickly in response to unanticipated needs from the field.

The goal of these workshops is to strengthen ABE programs by providing approaches and resources that participants may immediately implement and share with others in their programs. Most workshops consist of two three-hour sessions and are facilitated by First Literacy and local ABE professionals. All workshops are free to staff members of Massachusetts ABE programs.

FALL/WINTER Professional Development Calendar – Click to download
WINTER/SPRING Professional Development Calendar – Click to download

Click here to access resources from past Professional Development Workshops.

In the 2016-2017 school year:

  • 18 workshops held throughout academic year, including two at the Massachusetts Coalition of Adult Educators’ Network
  • 5 ESOL Teachers’ Circles held
  • 60 hours of professional development presented
  • 137 programs from throughout the region represented
  • 249 educators attended a workshop
  • 69 educators attended more than one workshop
  • 63 different towns and cities were represented by educators
  • More than 6,000 adult students impacted by teachers’ participation

For more information, please contact our Director of Programs, Lenore Balliro, at lballiro@firstliteracy.org or at 617.482.3336 x13.

Register for Workshops

Workshop registrations will open about one month before each event. Click on the orange link to register and learn more.


First Literacy Lab Project Presentations

Friday, October 27
9:30 AM – 1:00 PM
District Hall, 75 Northern Avenue, Boston


Digital Literacy Community of Practice: Using Apps and Other Tech Tools for Teaching and Learning

Monday, October 30, November 27 & January 8
2:00 – 4:00 PM


The Effects of Trauma and Chronic Stress on Learning: What Teachers Can Do

Friday, November 3 & December 1
1:00 – 4:00 PM


Basics of Grant Writing for ABE/ESOL Programs

Monday, November 6 & November 20
1:00 – 4:00 PM


Promoting Reading Fluency for Mixed Level ABE & ESOL Classes Using The Change Agent

Friday, November 17
10:00 AM – 1:00 PM


Retro, Vintage, Time-Tested Interactive Activities for the ESOL Class

Friday, December 8 & January 19
1:00 – 4:00 PM


Integrating Math into the ESOL Curriculum

Friday, December 15 & January 12
1:00 – 4:00 PM


Unless otherwise noted, all workshops will be held at First Literacy, 160 Boylston Street, second floor, across from Boston Common.

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