Several adult education students take the step to learn how to read in order to understand and not be afraid of the world around them. They are smart enough to survive and make it through life without being able to read, but feel insecure when people talk about current events or things that they’ve read because it is harder to relate and their secret inability might come out.
Literacy experts encourage adult learners to bring their own materials so that the learning is relevant to their life. This could be a report the received at work, their child’s homework, a bible, or whatever they would like to know more about. If your student is unsure about where to start, try by bringing in an article from The Times in Plain English or The Why? Files. Students can learn something more about what is going on and have something new to talk about at work or with family that they might have been nervous to speak about prior. Turn it into a discussion about what is happening in the world or nearby. Then, ask your student about things that are important to them and what they would like to learn more about.
Learning more about major issues might also inspire your student to act and become a more active citizen in their community. Knowledge is power.