The Official Online Training Workshop

Adult Basic Literacy Tutor Training Workshop – This is the universal 14-hour self-paced training workshop that should be used by any Volunteer Tutors who were unable to attend an in-person training session.  It goes over all of the ins and outs of being a successful tutor.

Other Helpful Training Resources

Applying Research in Reading Instruction for Adults: First Steps for Teachers – An introduction to research-based principles of reading instruction for instructors (tutors) in adult education and literacy classes (tutoring sessions).

Tutor Training Materials – This site contains general tutoring information for Tutors of Adult Learners. It explains in depth how to work with Adult learners and provides helpful tips on teaching them in literacy, math, writing, as well as a number of other subjects.

ProLiteracy – ProLiteracy is an organization that provides adult literacy resources, with several free courses that prepare volunteers for literacy tutoring.

ProLiteracy Math Course – This is ProLiteracy’s short workshop on how to teach math to adults.  It is titled Making Math Manageable.


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  • GCF Learn Free – A free resource site that features an extensive collection of lessons on various computer programs, social media, email basic, etc.  The lessons range from the very basics of using a computer to more challenging tasks such as how to use Microsoft Office Suite.  All of this could be useful to participants who are trying to better their work prospects by becoming computer literate.
  • Alison – Alison is a new world of certified learning. It has some useful information on Computer Skills as well as much, much more.  There is a course on here about basic computer literacy, which would be a good starting point for people who are illiterate when it comes to using computers.  From there, there are courses on all sorts of useful computer skills.
  • Udacity – This site has some helpful video tutorials on a number of computer topics, but may not have anything for beginning computer users.  It would be worth it to give it a glance though, there may be something else there that can end up being useful to you and your participants.
  • Saylor – There are free courses on basic Computer skills here.  One in particular that could be very helpful to beginner computer users is the Computer Skills and Literacy course.  It provides a comprehensive introduction to computers.  This could be beneficial for some people.
  • CT Distance Learning Consortium – When it comes to websites, it doesn’t get much simpler than this.  Here you will find basic computer, e-mail, word processing, and web skills help.
  • Meganga – Learn how to use a computer here on this Blog-style website that has detailed tutorials on computer basics as well as more advanced lessons.
  • IVCC – This is a basic computer skills self-assessment quiz for participants to take once they are more comfortable and familiar with the keyboard, the mouse, computer concepts, file management, the internet, and email.

Mouse & Keyboarding Resources

  • Mouserobics – Learn how to use a mouse in this interactive activity.
  • Typing Test – Take typing tests that will boost your keyboarding abilities.
  • Sense-Lang – Learn how to type and play free typing games.  This site has typing and keyboarding tutorials, games, and testing.
  • GCF Learn Free – This is always a good site for learning just about anything.  They have a whole section on basic computer skills including Mouse and Keyboarding skills.
  • Digital Literacy – Build digital literacy skills by selecting from the categories here.  Most of the categories will help to better participants’ skills for the 2014 GED Test.
  • The Bee Hive – Use the Digital Basics section here to learn to use Computers and the Internet safely and intelligently.
  • Microsoft Digital Literacy Curriculum – Help your students live and thrive in the 21st century digital world with Microsoft’s Digital Literacy Curriculum. These e-learning materials help you teach and assess computer concepts and skills so your students can use technology to develop new social and economic opportunities for themselves, their families, and their communities.
  • Digital Learn – In a classroom environment online, learn about what a computer is and how to use a mouse and keyboard.

Computer Typing Lessons (Videos) – YouTube videos that will teach participants how to type.


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Tutoring an ESOL (English for Speakers of Other Languages) student can be a very rewarding experience. However, the first lesson can be daunting if you have little experience interacting with a student who speaks limited English.

  • ESL Gold – A great website packed with grammar, vocab, reading, and writing tools for anyone who is in need of material to teach English or learn the language
  • Randall’s ESL Cyber Listening Lab – There are plenty of listening quizzes that could be used in the classroom to test your student’s progress. Or if you’re learning  on your own pace at home.

Florida Literacy Coalition – Lots of useful links for literacy tutors – A WEALTH of information!• Florida Literacy Coalition – Lots of useful links for literacy tutors – A WEALTH of information!

• East Side Literacy Adult Education Tutor SupportTips for teaching ESL, Lesson Ideas, Conversation Ideas, and Resources.

• Minnesota Literacy Council online trainingLiteracy Level Adult ESL Instruction – no cost, approx. 4 hours.

• REEPworld – is a free English practice website for adult ESL students and teachers

Voice of America NewsLearning English: Simplified daily news stories for reading practice with audio narration, plus leveled English lessons for learning practical language skills.

TalkEnglish.com – is a website for students to improve their spoken English. Many lessons and exercises.

Breaking News EnglishFree English lessons in seven levels – Like “Weekly Reader” for ESL students.

• ManyThings.orgGreat for expanding vocabulary, plus links to videos and helpful ESL sites.

Delco Literacy Council’s training videos on First ESOL tutoring sessionparts 1 and 2 are very helpful to know how to get started.


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Math is Fun – This site offers mathematics in an enjoyable and easy-to-learn manner, because the makers believe that mathematics is and should be fun.  It aims to cover the full Kindergarten to Year 12 curriculum.  Below are links to sections of the site that we have found helpful for tutoring:

Curriculum An indispensable, fun math tutor resource!  Comprehensive PreK-12 math curriculum with complete math lessons, divided by year and topic.  Each lesson is a detailed, easy-to-understand walk through with practice questions at the end.

Math Trainer Addictive game for memorizing basic addition, subtraction, and multiplication facts.  Perfect for the student who hasn’t memorized their math facts or wants to improve their speed.  Use the bar on the left hand side of the page to enter the mathematical operation that you would like to work on as well as other game specifics.

GCF Learn Free – A free resource site that features a collection of lessons on basic math.

Khan Academy – It’s a nonprofit with the goal of changing education for the better by providing a free world-class education for anyone anywhere.  There are hundreds of lessons on here that come in the form of videos.  The math section of the Academy is spectacular, and ranges from early math to trigonometry.  As a tutor, it may be a good idea to refresh your math skills using this site if your participant would like to learn math that you may have forgotten since school, long ago.  As a participant, this is a great site for them to watch videos and learn how to do all kinds of math.

Udacity – This site has some helpful videos for beginning math as well as other subjects.  It’s mostly other subjects on here, but there are some useful math videos too if you are willing to look for them.

Learner’s TV – There are some basic Math Lessons here as well as more difficult ones.  All of the lessons come in the form of videos.  This could be a good site for volunteers and participants to use together, or perhaps something participants could do in their free time to learn.

IXL – ‘Math practice that feels like play!  This site supports dynamic, adaptive learning for free!’  That was the description on the webpage.  Pre-K through high school math is on here.  It may be a fun resource to get into.

Free Rice – Learn Multiplication and Basic Math (Pre-Algebra) while simultaneously feeding the hungry!  This site is fun and rewarding.

Math Playground – Participants can practice math skills with fun and challenging games.

Soft Schools – Free math concepts, tips, games, and worksheets.

Turtle Diary – It’s a unique collection of interactive and fun educational games that can assist you in teaching important concepts that focus on specific math skills.

Family Learning – Here are some free online multiplication games that will provide a lot of times table practice.

Alpha Educational – Great presentations on teaching math in patterns!

A Plus Math – Use this site to create Math worksheets for printing, solving online, or downloading PDF.  You can also test your Math skills with the flashcards available here and play exciting games.

Math 2 – Here is a list of Geometry formulas.

Math.com – This site has everything.  Really.  Check it out.

Hot Math – Go here and click the geometry topic you are studying to activate an engaging activity.

Ventura Adult Ed GED Math – Learn all of the GED Math your learners need to know to do well on their GED test.  This site is broken down into lessons that can be helpful for your own lesson plans.

Math Playground – Just like the name sounds, this site is a fun outlet full of Math games that can boost your Math skills and knowledge!

Arcademics – Play fun basic math games.  This website is mostly for beginners.

Math-Aids – This site provides free math worksheets for tutors and learners.  The math worksheets  are randomly and dynamically generated by math worksheet generators.  This allows you to make an unlimited number of printable math worksheets to your specifications instantly.

Saylor U – Here, the Math lessons are arranged by grade level.  If your participant is not at a sixth grade math level yet, I would’t bother here.  However, if he or she is, this could be a great resource.


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GED Information and Practice- This section focuses on some useful resources when preparing for the GED 

  • Marshall Adult Education – This has some helpful resources for those who are in the process of attaining their GEDs.
  • 4 Tests – This site has a free GED practice exam that is designed to help prepare participants for the 2014 GED Exam. It also has a useful GED description section if you scroll down the page that is full of helpful information for anyone preparing to take the test.
  • Free Test Prep – Here you will find tons of GED practice tests for all of the exam subjects.
  • Study Guide Zone – Testing resources for all of the GED subjects, skill building exercises, and GED Practice Test questions.
  • Virginia Department of Education – GED program information including exam details, regulations and requirements, test preparation, accommodations, a testing site locator, and more.
  • Site List – Numerous other GED Resources for the 2014 GED test.
  • 2014 GED Item Sampler – The 2014 GED Test® Item Samplers provide access to example test items that address some of the assessment targets on the 2014 GED® test, available now in the United States. These tools have been designed with educators in mind to help you prepare adults to take and succeed on the 2014 GED® test.
  • Free Practice Test – Access the free practice test today and get a preview of the content and technology that are part of the 2014 GED® test.
  • Audio GED Prep – Audio lesson to help participants prepare for the GED exam.
  • Assessment Guide for Educators – Here is a document that literally has all of the information and data that any GED instructor needs in order to fully understand the 2014 GED test.
  • GED 2014 Content Summary – This webpage is a helpful guide to all of the skills and content needed to prepare for the 2014 GED test.  It includes all of the areas of Language Arts, Math, Science, and Social Studies that GED students must be familiar with in order to do well on their exams.
  • Performance Level Descriptors – Brought to us by GED Testing Services, this helpful link will assist GED instructors in figuring out whether or not their participants are ready to pass the 2014 GED test. They do this by supplying information on the three official performance levels of the GED, Performance Level 1 being “Below Passing”, Performance Level 2 being “Passing Standard for High School Equivalency”, and Performance Level 3 being “GED® Score with Honors”. By using the documents linked to this webpage, you can confirm which of the three performance levels your participant is at and determine what he or she must do in order to improve their skills enough to perform higher on the exam.
  • GCFLearnfree GED Prep Resources – A wonderfully useful and easy to navigate catalog of free GED Prep resources, for all subjects and needs. Includes practice tests, Classes, tools to find a Testing Center, and more.

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Lesson Plan Templates

  • Teacher Planet – A wide variety of lesson plan templates, including templates based on specific subjects for participant needs.
  • Open Culture – A database for a plethora of learning tools across the internet
  • Harvard Bridge Program – This site has excellent tutor resources for lesson plans and activities for a variety of subjects, including reading, writing, math, and computers.
  • Napa County Literacy –  Here’s a list of highly recommended websites that offer tutor lesson plans and resources that include excellent worksheets, activities, quizzes, and more.
  • Florida Literacy Coalition – There is a Tutor Help Center box on the right side of this webpage that is filled with tutoring strategies, lesson plans, lesson ideas, teaching tips, and handouts.  If you find yourself unsure of how to teach a particular lesson, this site should give you the help you need.
  • Tacoma Area Literacy Council –  This site doesn’t appear to have a whole lot on it, however what it does have is gold.  It includes pertinent general suggestions for how an adult tutoring session lesson plan should look, and there is a long list of fantastic tutoring resources as well.

Tension Breakers

  • Bananagrams – Letter tiles that can be used to create and build off of words.
  • Crossword Puzzles – Free crossword puzzle maker.  This might be a fun activity for word recognition and spelling.
  • Word Searches – Free word search maker.  This might be a fun activity for spelling practice.
  • The Problem Site – This site has a bunch of educational games that can be fun and educational lessons during your tutoring sessions.
  • Story Starters – Here your participant can choose a story theme and the site will automatically come up with a plot line.  This could be a great activity for writing practice.

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For Beginning Level Participants:

  • Hubbard’s Cupboard – Stories based on word families and a few key sight words.
  • Mr. Printables – an excellent site with unique flashcards for beginning vocabulary words and sight words.
  • Rong-Chang – List of sites with stories for beginning and intermediate readers (scroll down the webpage to view story selections)
  • Mrs. Perkins Sight Words – Recommended sight words for grades Pre-K to 3.
  • Spelling City – An all inclusive site for vocabulary, spelling, and basic language arts.
  • Owl & Mouse Educational Software – Help participants learn to read with this site’s free interactive games and activities.  There are various exercises here for learning the alphabet, the symbols for each letter, the sounds of the letters, and much more.  This is a great place for L level (TABE test) readers.
  • Family Learning – Here are some phonics games to help your learner to practice sounding out words.  They will have fun while developing their phonic knowledge and skills.
  • Confessions of a…Homeschooler – This webpage contains an entire packet (its thick) of free sight word worksheets that include activities that will help participants learn some of the most basic words that we use daily in our reading and writing.
  • Handwriting Practice – A simple and easy to use website for creating custom handwriting worksheets. Covers both Print and Cursive, and has a lot of available options for the layout.

For Beginning, Intermediate, and High Level Participants:

  • K12 Reader – Provides hundreds of worksheets for all grade levels. Also has many common core specific worksheets.
  • ReadWorks – Provides tons of reading packets based on grade level with comprehension questions to follow. Really good for adult learners because the reading material can be taken from history, science, culture, etc.
  • Marshall Adult Education – Reading Skills for Today’s Adult- Stories broken down into grade levels, with pre-reading questions.
  • News In Levels – This is an awesome resources that consists of news articles that are written specifically for beginning readers.
  • Proliteracy – This site has stories at a variety of reading levels and includes activities.
  • Practice Reading w/ GCF– Passages at the intermediate level can be found here.  There is also beginner level material on this site as well.  Everything is interactive.
  • English for Everyone – Various worksheets for reading, comprehension, and sentence-completion etc.
  • Essay Writing Help – Hand Brainstorming Method for Writing
  • IXL Reading practice that feels like play!  This site supports dynamic, adaptive learning for free.  It starts at a second grade reading level.
  • Free Rice – Learn new vocabulary and proper English grammar while simultaneously feeding the hungry!
  • Marshall Adult Basic Education – Marshall is a great resource for teaching reading skills to Adults.  It provides a variety of free short stories that range from beginning level reading to more advanced levels.  The stories are free to read, as well as the activities that go along with each story.
  • Soft Schools – Free grammar, spelling, vocabulary, and reading comprehension worksheets, games, quizzes, activities, and more.
  • Printable Aesop’s Fables – Short, colorful stories with moral lessons.
  • Turtle Diary– The interactive Reading and Writing games and online activities here can assist you in teaching your participants letter recognition and writing in an easy, comprehensive way.  Phonics and rhyming word activities are available for beginners, and a wide range of vocabulary, grammar exercises, and more are here for the more advanced learners.
  •  Turtle Diary (Phonics) – also has an entire pronunciation guide on letter sounds including consonants, short and long vowels, digraphs, diphthongs, and variant vowels, thereby helping to develop the learner’s ability to hear, understand, and use phonemes.

For High Level Participants:

  • Wonderopolis – Fascinating articles for both children and adults, with activities and audio recordings.  This is a site with high interest reading material presented at about a seventh grade reading level.  Lower level readers can practice reading here with the help of a tutor.
  • Many Things – Classic short stories rewritten at a somewhat lower reading level, many with audio recordings.
  • 50 Best Short Stories – Classic short stories in their original forms.

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Just in case a participant is interested in learning about money:

  • CFPB- Your Money, Your Goals – A great resource for teaching basic budgeting, credit repair, safe banking, etc.
  • FDIC MoneySmart – A Financial Education Program with Computer-Based Instruction.  Learn all the basics here.  This resource has everything you need to know in order to be financially stable.
  • Personal Finance – Free videos on Personal Finance.  May be something to explore if you are looking for more information on a particular financial aspect.
  • Practical Money Skills Games– You read it correctly, here are some games that can help you expand your money smarts.  Sounds like a winner to me.
  • FDIC MoneySmart Podcast – Listen and/or download MoneySmart podcasts.   Could be something to listen to on long car rides or downtime.
  • Money Basics Tutorial – This site discusses money management, banking, retirement planning, and more.  Your participant can start learning the skills they need to better manage their money through this resource.
  • Practical Money Skills – Here you can find financial literacy for everyone.  There is a bunch of information about personal finance, but what makes this site unique is that it includes Lesson plans for Educators (tutors) as well as games, various calculators, videos, and more.

 

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