The Ripple Effect of Our Work

A Note From Executive Director, Terry Witherell

I want to share with you a moving experience that I recently witnessed here at First Literacy.

We have started another year of our Professional Development workshops. You might recall that these workshops are offered free to teachers of adult learners who are preparing for their high school equivalency or who are learning English. We identify presenters who are experts in their subject matter, and they come in to train these teachers who would not otherwise have access to training.

Our first workshop was for teachers who are helping students prepare for their citizenship exam. Kathleen Close and Andy Koppel, from the Immigrant Learning Center in Malden, offered three hours of training on “Teaching Citizenship Preparation in a Multi-Level Class”.

I had the opportunity to sit in on the beginning of the class, when Andy demonstrated a mock interview with one of his students. The student is from China, and she has been preparing to take her citizenship exam which is scheduled for later this month.

It was really moving to see her answer the questions so well, and with such poise. I think I would be a lot more nervous than she was, if I were going through that process!

It was also moving to see the teachers in the room take everything in, knowing that they would be sharing this knowledge with their own students. The number of people who ultimately will benefit from this training is staggering.

What a privilege it was to see this process in action. Obtaining their US Citizenship is a dream of many immigrants in our communities. Knowing that First Literacy is part of that process was awesome to see.

We could not do this important work without your support. Please consider making a donation to help us continue supporting adult learners and educators in Massachusetts.

October 22, 2019

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