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Math Literacy

2/28/2020

I have never been a math fan. It did not come easy for me. I have found that although I do not like doing it, I like to teach it. I know it makes no sense. Math is a language and like any language if you do not use it you lose it. It must be practiced. Here is a great article on Math Literacy. So worth the read. May we learn to be flexible, learn from others and find a way forward. https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/us/us-students-lag-other-countries-in-math-the-reason-likely-lies-in-how-schools-teach-it/ar-BB10vQB0?ocid=spartandhp
 
 

Are We Cultivating Reading?

1/22/2020

I love to read. I have read to my children, helped them enjoy reading. I love Shakespeare, poetry, mysteries and more. My oldest son cannot stand Shakespeare, somehow the beauty in the language I see, he cannot. My son loves language and gets a kick out of the subtly in it, but it is still no to Shakespeare for him. My grandmother cultivated that love of beautiful language and reading for me when I was a child. She was always quoting classics and poetry to me. Her father had cultivated that love for her.
I love reading. Some do not. How do we change that? If you are struggling with learning to read as an English language learner, or a native speaker reading can be a daunting thing. So how do we cultivate reading for those who struggle.
Here is a link to an article about how one teacher found a way to help her struggling students learn to love reading.

https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/yearinoffbeatgoodnews/this-virginia-educator-is-teaching-students-to-love-reading-she-paid-for-a-library-of-1000-books-by-raising-money-online/ar-BBZ7lKL?ocid=spartandhp.

When you are done, leave me a message on how you have cultivated reading!
 

Article from "Explore Parents"

11/19/2019

Here is an article that I came across at " Explore Parents". My son is an avid Anime reader. He will go to the library and walk out with an arm full of books, which he will read in 3-4 days. He also loves regular books and fan fictions of his favorite characters. Some of those fan fictions have up to a million words in them. He is very selective in what he reads and always has a critique of them. In the anime he reads, he loves the pictures as well as the words. The visual portrayal is just as delightful to him.

These graphic novels can help those who struggle to read too. The pictures can help clarify and fill in information they may have missed in reading. It builds comprehension. Comprehension is the most powerful part of reading. Being able to understand and use what you have read gives you power. Here is the article.

​ Why You Should Encourage Your Child's Love of Graphic NovelsAre graphic novels really hurting children's reading skills? And should kids just stick to the classics? Experts explain why it's time we end the graphic novel stigma for good.

By Sarah Lindenfeld Hall
Updated November 07, 2019




Fans attend attend the Captain Underpants Book Signing with Dav Pilkey during the Greenwich International Film Festival, Day 1 on June 1, 2017 in Greenwich, Connecticut.
Ben Gabbe/Getty Images for Greenwich International Film Festival
My 10-year-old's pet-sitting earnings were burning a hole in her pocket, and the only place she wanted—no, "needed to go," she told me—was our local independent bookstore to pick up more graphic novels.
At the store, as she held up her selections, I half-heartedly gestured to the other shelves filled with the kinds of books I read as a child. "How about one of those?" I asked, muttering something about the importance of developing the stamina to read longer books with more words. My daughter opted to do her part to build her growing graphic novel collection instead. She bought three.
I'm not the first person to fret over their child's choices in the aisles of our favorite bookstore, Quail Ridge Books in Raleigh, North Carolina. Amber Brown, assistant general manager, says the shop's booksellers often find themselves easing adults' concerns about kids' love of graphic novels. Parents worry kids won't read anything else or develop the skills to read longer books. In fact the opposite is true. Kids who read graphic novels are move likely to develop a love of reading. But well-meaning teachers steer students away from the picture-filled books, pushing the classics they grew up with instead. "It's getting better as we go on," says Brown, "but we do still get parents and teachers saying, 'But I want them to read real books.'"
RELATED: I'm a Mom With a Ph.D. in Reading: Here's How I Get My Kids to Love Books
Why Kids Love Graphic NovelsDespite their popularity, graphic novels have long carried a stigma. That was sparked, in part, by the once widely read 1954 book, Seduction of the Innocent, where author Fredric Wertham detailed now refuted evidence that reading comics causes juvenile delinquency.
But authors and readers pressed on, and by the early 2000s, graphic novels were gaining ground. In 2005, Scholastic's Graphix became the first publisher imprint dedicated to children's graphic novels. It now churns out popular series like Bone, Amulet, and The Baby-Sitters Club, which will become a Netflix show.
Sales of comics and graphic novels in the U.S. and Canada hit an all-time high in 2018, according to ICv2 and Comichron, totaling more than $1.09 billion in sales, up $80 million from 2017. And 2019 continues to be a big year for the genre. Dav Pilkey's latest in the Dog Man series, Dog Man: For Whom the Ball Rolls, sold more than 775,000 copies since its August release. Raina Telgemeier's much-anticipated Guts shot to No. 1 in its first week on sale on USA Today's best-selling list, which counts sales for all types of books. And now there's a new way to chart the growing popularity of graphic novels with the recent return of The New York Times' monthly graphic novel best-seller list.

Dog Man #7: For Whom the Ball Rolls by Dav Pilkey
Courtesy of ScholasticcPilkey, whose Dog Man series has more than 26 million copies in print since launching in 2016, said the combination of words and pictures explain part of the popularity, but it goes deeper than that. He remembers reading Charlie Brown comics as a kid and feeling drawn to more than just the storylines. "I developed an emotional attachment to the characters I was reading about, especially if pictures were involved," says Pilkey, also the author behind the Captain Underpants series.
RELATED: 30 Best Kids' Books of 2019
While a quick look at book covers with cartoonish characters might indicate these novels cover breezy topics, it's far from the reality. Pilkey's Dog Man books continue a running storyline about a shared custody arrangement. In the autobiographical Guts, Telgemeier dives into mental health issues, describing the experience of a panic attack with words and pictures—an experience kids struggle with more often these days.
At the same time, the books also require a different level of reading comprehension than a traditional novel as kids decipher a story with not just the words, but also the plot captured in the images, says Telgemeier. That's a skill becoming more important in a world where we distill both words and images on our smartphones and other screens.
And it's one reason why kids speed through the books on first read—and then read them over and over again. They're capturing the main points of the story the first time and then diving into all its nuances when they open it up again. "It really puts the reader into the driver's seat," says Telgemeier. "They have to do the work. They have to see and think and wonder and look for clues and become a visual detective to understand the full story."
RELATED: 7 Ways to Encourage a Love of Reading
Why Kids Should Keep Reading Graphic NovelsBut, for parents and teachers, it can seem like kids are missing out. Shana Frazin, a senior staff developer at the Reading and Writing Project at Teachers College, Columbia University, says they need to embrace their kids or students' interests—and bone up on the research.
"It's not that comics are lacking in sophistication," Frazin told a packed room of teachers at a recent talk on how to teach graphic novels. "It's that we teachers are lacking in the practice of seeing the complexity in these texts."
So is it OK if a kid only wants to read graphic novels? Experts say yes.
Research from the University of Oregon found that comic books averaged 53.5 rare, or more complex, words per 1,000. That's more than children's books which average 30.9 and even adult books at 52.7. One study found that graphic texts promote learning and better recall. Another found that students had the best reading comprehension and enjoyed reading the most when they read graphic novels. They also motivate reluctant readers to pick up a book.
RELATED: I'm a Mom and a Child Psychologist: This Is the Behavior I Actually Worry About
"It's not what they read, but how they read and how often they read that's going to improve literacy," says Emily Pendergrass, Ph.D., director of the Reading Education Program at Vanderbilt University. Pushing children to read things they don’t want to read, she adds, often leads them to not read at all.
The goal, says Dr. Pendergrass, is to raise a child who identifies as a reader and feels confident picking up any book—whether it's a graphic novel, a Shakespeare play, or a biology textbook.
When I asked my 10-year-old if she's a reader, her answer was a resounding, "Yes." Despite misgivings, I've always let her read whatever she wants, and she's proven any of my worries about her reading stamina wrong. She recently finished all 870 pages of Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix.
And then she picked up a graphic novel.


 

Building

11/1/2019

We are trying to expand Bridgerland Literacy's services to offer more to the community. So this week I have spent a lot of time going over GED Curriculums trying to figure out which would be best for our student populations. Trying to figure out how best to structure the classes to be most useful to the students, to help them succeed.
It has been tough! There are a lot of programs out there, a lot of ways to do it and all of them work. So I have looked, researched and talked to my teacher friends to sort through the ideas and concepts to find a way to build a plan. If you have any ideas send them my way. Plans can always be refined.
GED has four areas of study. Math, Science, Social Studies and Literacy. (Literacy -reading and writing, used to be Language Arts) Each section can be taken on its own or all 4 at once. An individual has up to 2 years to pass all 4 areas. The programs already doing GED in the Cache Valley area are self paced, online preparation. We are considering a teacher lead program, because some of the materials are a struggle to learn on your own or there might be some obstacles to over come.
A GED certificate can open doors for those who have not finished High School or those coming from another country - their High School Diplomas do not translate to one from the United States. Those individuals must therefore take the GED here. It is a tough test and if you have not studied those subjects for a while it will take work to revive the knowledge.
I am grateful for the education I have and I love helping others increase their learning. If you need help with a GED look us up. If you can help others prepare for the GED look us up. Learning is a powerful tool. Let's share it.
 

Partnering

10/25/2019

In May of 2019 Bridgerland Literacy partnered with Utah State University's Center For The Persons With Disabilities. That partnership affords us greater resources in the collective talent at the CPD.

We are still Bridgerland Literacy (BLIT) and we are still located at BTECH's West Campus. We still do one on one tutoring. We still are in need of volunteers and are always in need of funding. What is does mean for BLIT, is individuals at the CPD helping us expand our vision and outreach to the Cache Valley community.

Here is how that is happening: We are looking at partnering with other agencies here in the valley to create a Family Literacy program - helping families succeed. Family Literacy has three legs. Each agency working their part or leg of the program. First, Early Childhood Intervention- early education skills to help children succeed in school. Second, Parenting classes - classes that help parents learn to parent and use educational strategies to help their children succeed in school. Last Adult Literacy- helping adults improve their literacy skills - reading, writing, and math. Did you know that if a parent struggles to read, so will 72% of their children. Literacy is generational.
BLIT will be creating community classes to help build literacy skills in the valley. There will be GED Prep classes with a teacher, Increased English Language Learner classes, the next level up from the great skills the English Language Center teaches and Writing classes.

Putting all the pieces together is taking some time and we could always use your help. We are grateful for the collaboration with USU's CPD and the wonderful staff who provide experience, encouragement and support as we expand literacy opportunities in Cache Valley. Come, come be part of growing LITERACY in Cache Valley.
 

Scrabble Scramble

2/23/2018

It has occurred to me that I should tell you what we do here at Bridgerland Literacy.   We are an adult literacy program - to help those who struggle with reading and writing skills.  Sometimes it is one or two small missing pieces that trip someone up in their reading or writing skills. Sometimes a little more.   We help figure that out and how best to put those pieces back in.

​Here is how we do that.   When someone comes in  they first fill out an application.   This helps us find out who they are, likes, interests, what their concerns are, and when they are available to work with us.   Next a basic reading/comprehension screening is done.   This helps us to determine where the problem might be and how to best go about correcting the issue.   We have a little conversation about what is needed, which of the programs that we use that might be most helpful to this individual.   Not every person learns in the same way, so figuring out how an individual learns is a powerful way to help them  be successful.   

​Let's talk a little about the programs we use.   Our programs are research based programs.   That means that they are programs that have been tried, studied and have shown proven success.  That is important because we are not here to just make an effort and hope it gets better.   We are here to help our students have success.    Here are a few that we use the: Rewards program, Challenger program, SRA,  and Four Square Writing Method.   Some of our Programs are Direct Instruction.   Direct instruction is a very effective in improving reading skills.    Each program is carefully selected to match the students needs.    

​Then a tutor and student match is made and we start working.   All of our tutoring takes place in public places, such as here at  our offices at BTech West Campus, BTech Main Campus-Academic Learning Area, or any of the valley Libraries.   This is to insure Student-Tutor safety.
Once student and tutors are working together, we progress monitor to make sure the match to tutor and program are working.  We start slow and build.   If not we make adjustments.

​Reading or the lack of it can have such a great impact on our lives.   It can affect our health - if we can't follow Dr.'s orders or take our medications properly.  It affects our success and income at work.  It even affects our children.   If a parent struggles with reading they are less likely to help their children with homework, putting their children at risk. 

Reading and Writing are important skills.   If you need help with them come see us.   If you want to help come see us.   We are here to make a difference, come be a part of that.
 

WHAT WE DO!

2/23/2018

It has occurred to me that I should tell you what we do here at Bridgerland Literacy.   We are an adult literacy program - to help those who struggle with reading and writing skills.  Sometimes it is one or two small missing pieces that trip someone up in their reading or writing skills. Sometimes a little more.   We help figure that out and how best to put those pieces back in.

​Here is how we do that.   When someone comes in  they first fill out an application.   This helps us find out who they are, likes, interests, what their concerns are, and when they are available to work with us.   Next a basic reading/comprehension screening is done.   This helps us to determine where the problem might be and how to best go about correcting the issue.   We have a little conversation about what is needed, which of the programs that we use that might be most helpful to this individual.   Not every person learns in the same way, so figuring out how an individual learns is a powerful way to help them  be successful.   

​Let's talk a little about the programs we use.   Our programs are research based programs.   That means that they are programs that have been tried, studied and have shown proven success.  That is important because we are not here to just make an effort and hope it gets better.   We are here to help our students have success.    Here are a few that we use the: Rewards program, Challenger program, SRA,  and Four Square Writing Method.   Some of our Programs are Direct Instruction.   Direct instruction is a very effective in improving reading skills.    Each program is carefully selected to match the students needs.    

​Then a tutor and student match is made and we start working.   All of our tutoring takes place in public places, such as here at  our offices at BTech West Campus, BTech Main Campus-Academic Learning Area, or any of the valley Libraries.   This is to insure Student-Tutor safety.
Once student and tutors are working together, we progress monitor to make sure the match to tutor and program are working.  We start slow and build.   If not we make adjustments.

​Reading or the lack of it can have such a great impact on our lives.   It can affect our health - if we can't follow Dr.'s orders or take our medications properly.  It affects our success and income at work.  It even affects our children.   If a parent struggles with reading they are less likely to help their children with homework, putting their children at risk. 

Reading and Writing are important skills.   If you need help with them come see us.   If you want to help come see us.   We are here to make a difference, come be a part of that.
 

Making a Difference

1/22/2018

Here is an article from CBS News about an athlete making a difference in reading not only for himself, his team but for others.   Way to Go Mr. Luck!   Thanks for making a difference.

CBS News January 20, 2018, 11:35 AM
                            Meet the NFL quarterback with his own book club! Long before Indianapolis Colts quarterback Andrew Luck was reading NFL playbooks, he was simply reading. Bookworm or bibliophile – however you describe him – that was a young Andrew Luck. Now, because Luck is using his star power to encourage the young and old to read, some people are calling him the NFL's unofficial librarian.
"I don't think I have a conscious, sort of revelation, memory of, 'Oh the first time I read a book was here or there.' I just always remember enjoying reading, and there were always books in our house," Luck told CBS News' Dana Jacobson.
What did he love about books as a kid? "I think it's the same thing as today," he said. "You learn some really cool things ... Reading really requires you to shut everything else off. And I enjoy that."
Whether it was during his college years playing football at Stanford or now in the NFL, Luck says his passion for reading has never dwindled even when his time to do so has.
"I definitely don't read as much when I'm in season. There is no time, probably before bed, ten minutes, just to sort of clear my mind, and I've always felt like it helps me sleep," Luck said

Now, Luck is sharing that part of who he is more formally. The Andrew Luck Book Club will celebrate its second anniversary this April. The club has monthly reading choices for both veterans and rookies and since the club is based on social media platforms like Twitter and Facebook, interaction is easy.
"I just choose a book, or two books, a rookie and a veteran book, a month. I try to keep it very simple," Luck said of his selections. "Rookies generally are the books that I read as a child … And then the veteran books are sort of what I'm reading now, and I thought that would be a fun way to maybe encourage people who wouldn't read, to read and pick it."
 
Some of those people being Luck's teammates. Punter Jeff Locke was with the Colts during part of training camp. When people think of book clubs, they're more likely to think of Oprah than an NFL player.
"He has so much going on. He has a huge playbook to study. He's helping players, he's doing all of these other things in the community. To picture him just going home and reading a couple chapters every night and then being able to interact with his fans about a book," Locke said.
Another part of Luck's book club is his podcasts.  

"Podcasts have really been a thrill, to talk to authors, I think it's such a cool thing. And I've become a fan boy very much," Luck said. "A little bit of a role reversal in a sense….There's always a little mutual respect and affection."
That affection is most apparent when Luck takes the book club off social media and into a face-to-face setting.
"The most impactful thing for me has been the opportunity to go to a classroom, or nursery school, or somewhere in the community and read with, or to kids," he said. "The majority of the kids have no idea who I am when I walk into a room. Well, some of them, the older ones maybe do."
But he says as soon as he starts reading, it's the book they are into.
"Part of the job is to make sure you are doing something positive with the platform ... To me there's nothing more positive than trying to affect a kid in a good way."
The goal of the club? Get someone who wasn't planning to read, to do just that.
"In a really sort of a simplistic view, the goal is that if one kid would pick up a book, that maybe otherwise wouldn't have and they have fun reading it ... That to me would be a good day."


Tis the Season

12/15/2017

Tis the season for Christmas stories.   When I was younger my grandmother always read us Christmas stories.  My Aunt Jane's favorite was "Annie and Willie's Prayer".  This story always made my aunt cry.  In fact is you just say the name of it she gets misty eyed.  My grandmother's favorite was "The Legend of the Christmas Rose".   She loved that story and would always quote bits of it to us.  One year she got a book to read to us, it would draw the whole family in to listen as she read to us "The Best Christmas Pageant Ever" by Barbara Robinson.   We loved it.

​In fact my grandmother loved reading and words.   She learned to love it from her father who would quote Henry Wadsworth Longfellow's - Evangeline - A Tale of Acadie.   She memorized the poem and would often quote it to me.  I too learned to love words and reading.  I thank my grandmother for that.    In the last couple of years I was reading a Kathy Reich's book where the case takes place at the edge of Acadia and she talks about Longfellow's Evangeline and quotes it too -" This is the forest primeval".   It delighted my heart to read it.

​There is great power in reading.  There are some out there who either cannot read well or do not read at all.  I find that a very devastating thought.   The beauty of words and the knowledge gained by them is a wondrous thing.    If you cannot read or read well, you struggle to understand Dr.'s orders or read your prescriptions and take them correctly, advance at work, help your child with homework, drive or get yourself around on the bus.   Reading is a very important skill and a powerful one that every one needs.

​So at this time of year, share what you love with those around you and do a little reading.  Share  some fun and delightful Holiday story with your family, a good friend or a message with a co-worker.   Share the spirit of the season and share the power of reading.  It truly is a wondrous thing.            
​                             Merry Everything and Happy Always  from Bridgerland Literacy
 

The Power of Reading

11/17/2017

I came across this article today.  I love how libraries and reading can transform a city.  Making a difference in all aspects of life.

Colombia's Medellin once had a bad reputation -- so bad, that some locals darkly nicknamed it "machine gun city. "The hometown of infamous drug lord Pablo Escobar became a hotbed of crime in the 1990s and early 2000s, plagued by thousands of murders. Its sprawling suburbs were particularly dangerous, cut off from the wealthier city center by steep hills.Over the past decade, however, city authorities have found a way to connect these neighborhoods with the rest of the city, and the world -- by building libraries. "The city has always developed more towards the city center," said Daniel Felipe Zapata Hincapié, a Medellin city official responsible for Libraries, Reading and Heritage. "Historically we didn't put much care into the outskirts... the rural territories. "But since the first of 10 "library parks" was unveiled in 2008, they have become anchors for the community, Hincapié said. Residents have taken ownership of the libraries and are shaping their communities around them.

The libraries aren't just for reading and borrowing books -- their impressive architecture houses exhibition halls, classrooms and auditoriums that host reading lessons for children and adults, as well as workshops on tech and robotics. The sprawling parks that surround them provide respite from the urban sprawl and a connection to nature.
More than having well equipped, architecturally beautiful buildings, what we prioritized is to have symbols," said Hincapié, speaking to CNN at the Fernando Botero library in the Medellin neighborhood of San Cristobal.

"The library parks are a symbol for the city... of transformation, innovation and inclusion," he added. "There's room for everybody here." Other initiatives -- like a cable car system launched in 2004 -- have also helped connect poorer neighborhoods with richer ones in the valley. Fewer people are left out of the city's development, and crime rates have gone down. The libraries have also given Medellin's citizens a renewed appreciation of Colombia's literary traditions that produced writers such as Gabriel Garcia Marquez, winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1982.

Events like the annual Medellin Book and Culture Festival have further strengthened the link between reading, education and social development. "When someone reads a book, you're never again the same person," said Diego Aristabal, the festival's director. "You begin to understand each other, and understanding other people is something fundamental to the process of reading and for the transformation of the city. "The library parks are creating a safer and more democratic Medellin for future generations, according to Hincapié.
"This library has always been about the democratization of knowledge... especially for young people to have a place to grow," he said. "Here they only find freedom, knowledge, they find a safe space.

​"MSN: Libraries are transforming Colombia's 'machine gun city' http://a.msn.com/01/en-us/BBF49Aq?ocid=se
I love the line "When someone reads a book, you're never again the same person,".  It is so true
Read a book, enrich yourself.   Then help someone else learn to read, enrich them.

 

November 01st, 2017

11/1/2017

Hey Everyone,
Bridgerland Literacy is participating in #GivingTuesday on November 28, 2017.  You have Black Friday and Cyber Monday for your shopping, but #GivingTuesday is for giving back to your community.  This is for everyone, everywhere-so get out and help.  You can donate time, talent and money.  Monies donated to Bridgerland Literacy is used to buy workbooks for our students.  We could always use your time for volunteering to tutor students too.   

WELCOME

10/11/2017

Welcome to Bridgerland Literacy's new website.  We hope this site is easier to use and brings you back again and again to find information on Bridgerland Literacy, reading and fun ideas. We hope that it is a wealth of knowledge to help those seeking better reading, writing, listening and speaking skills.   We love what we do here and feel passionate about helping people read.  Come see us, whether a student, volunteer or donor championing the cause of Literacy.  We would love to see you.                   Alice
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CONTACT US


Office hours: Mon–Fri, 9 a.m.–2:30 p.m.
LocationIDRPP Room 216 C
Phone: 435-797-1210
Email: alice.shepherd@usu.edu or blit.director@gmail.com

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