Technology is everywhere! We must think about how to support students in using technology wisely. It is important to integrate technology into the English Language Learner classroom, as a support to the curriculum the teacher is using. Students must have the computer skills to be successful in the workforce. These skills include a basic understanding of how to use a computer, navigate the internet, utilize web apps, and practice good netiquette skills. Think about how to support the use of technology with adult education students to help utilize technology in their learning and in a future job. Think about the technology skills required of the students to get a job, sustain employment, and be eligible for promotions within the workforce. Speak with local companies, to survey the needs of the workforce in the area. Then, create lessons to support students in learning these skills, so that they can apply them directly to the workforce. Set the students up for success. Tips for a seamless technology integration into the classroom:
- Build technology skills within lesson planning. Create a technology section within the lesson plan so that it becomes a regular part of planning.
- Identify the needs of students, and the skills needed to be successful within the workforce. Teach skills needed within the workforce, so students are more prepared, and can master the skills within the classroom environment, where the teacher can provide support. Provide instruction based on students’ responses.
- Check out The Learn to Earn Toolkit! It is a free online resource for English language learners at the intermediate and advanced levels. It provides free articles, videos, quizzes, and even badges for students to work their way through the course. Instructor accounts are available, so that the teachers can track student progress, and provide support.
- Practice parallel talk when utilizing technology in the classroom. When utilizing any technology, talk about the process, while completing the action. Have students walk through the process, and understand terminology for how to use computer vocabulary in context. For example, work with students to understand how to: start the computer, log into the computer, log into software programs, find resources on the internet, and how to make a copy of a document. It is natural to quickly get the classroom set-up before class. However, utilize this time as a learning opportunity for students to get comfortable with using a computer.
- Make it fun. Use games within the classroom. Incentivize activities to increase involvement and engagement. Integrate interactive resources that are at the student’s level, with content that is related to the students’ needs as well. Take advantage of review games, create a contest. Use games, fill-in-the-blank activities, and vocabulary quizzes to make learning fun.
- Give opportunities for students to utilize tools, and make mistakes, so that the teacher can provide the support needed to build their confidence within the classroom. Building confidence in the classroom will lead students to confidence in their applied skills in the workforce.
- Be optimistic. Technology is great when it works. When troubleshooting with devices, show resilience in working to solve a problem. Plan and practice before using it in the classroom. Have a backup plan. Use positive language when working with students to integrate technology. Show that you can work through troubleshooting the computers, so that the students will have the confidence to be successful when using technology as well. Set-up students for success.
Toyota Family Learning Program
Toyota, one of the nation's most successful corporations, began a partnership with NCFL in 1991. In addition to a commitment of more than $35 million, Toyota has also contributed a wealth of in-kind support — including advertising, planning and management expertise — to form one of the most progressive corporate/nonprofit partnerships in the nation.
Three major programs have been developed through the Toyota partnership based on the family literacy model of parents and children learning together. These models have influenced federal and state legislation, leveraged local dollars to support family literacy and led to successful programs being replicated across the country.Read More about Toyota and NCFL
Dollar General Literacy Foundation
The Dollar General Literacy Foundation began partnering with NCFL in 2006. A signature effort of this partnership is the National Literacy Directory, a resource that launched in 2010 and strives to reach the 35.7 million adults ages 18-64 who do not have a high school diploma by guiding them to better-paying, more stable jobs.
The National Literacy Directory contains over 10,000 educational agencies located across the United States and has a dedicated toll-free number to help support those wanting to pursue educational opportunities in their communities.
Dollar General also provides support for development of NCFL’s innovative family learning resources centered on financial literacy and Parent and Child Together (PACT) Time®.Go to Dollar General Literacy Foundation's website
PNC Grow Up Great
PNC Grow Up Great believes deeply in the power of high-quality early childhood education and provides innovative opportunities that assist families, educators and community organizations to enhance children's learning and development.
PNC Grow Up Great has partnered with NCFL since 1994 to advance early literacy and learning resources for vulnerable families. Current efforts supported by PNC include a collaborative initiative in two at-risk Detroit communities that engages families to support vocabulary development for children under age 5.
NCFL's work is also featured on the PNC Grow Up Great Lesson Center website. The Lesson Center includes over 100 free, high-quality preschool lesson plans and research-based instructional techniques and strategies. All lesson plans contain Home/School Connections printouts, in English and Spanish, to help families extend and reinforce the learning at home.PNC Grow Up Great
W.K. Kellogg Foundation
NCFL has partnered with the W.K. Kellogg Foundation since January 2016. The Foundation is currently supporting a dynamic two-generation family engagement initiative that expands NCFL's Family Learning model into select Head Start programs nationwide. NCFL's model presents an innovative way to support Head Start programs in meeting outcomes aligned with the Parent, Family, and Community Engagement Framework.Visit the Foundation website
Better World Books
Better World Books selected NCFL as its domestic literacy partner in 2005 and has raised more than $1 million to support NCFL’s work and donated more than $15 million to support literacy and education efforts worldwide. Better World Books is a triple-bottom-line online bookstore, working equally for people, planet and profit. Each book purchased powers literacy across the world.
Better World Books’ support of NCFL has provided books and workshops to families after Hurricane Katrina, donated large book donations to literacy programs and families nationwide and fueled innovative family literacy and learning programs and resources in libraries, schools and community-based organizations. In addition to their work for literacy and education, Better World Books diverts books from landfills and offers carbon-balanced shipping.Better World Books
Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
In 2013, NCFL began a partnership with the Gates Foundation to ensure that our network of students, teachers, and families thrive among recent shifts in standards-based education. NCFL will leverage the unique strengths of our award-winning Wonderopolis® platform to build upon the growing teacher network that uses the resource for core daily instruction and as a basis for professional growth.Foundation Website
NCFL has partnered with the Goodling Institute for Research and Family Literacy at Penn State University since 2001, working collaboratively to further research, professional development, and policy efforts for family literacy and intergenerational learning.
The work of this partnership includes, but is not limited to, a strong research strand at NCFL's national annual convening, the Families Learning Summit; advocacy for family literacy and learning to further support for and inclusion of family-focused education in new and ongoing legislation; and dissemination of the latest research, resources, information, and professional development opportunities for literacy and learning practitioners and advocates, including the Certificate in Family Literacy provided by the Goodling Institute.Goodling Institute for Research and Family Literacy at Penn State University