Sneak Peek at the Financial Literacy Track!

It’s surprising, sometimes frightening even, how little we really know about personal finance and money management, since most of us know close to nothing about sound practices beyond the basics.  In fact, most of what we do know is information that our friends and families have given us or that we have learned through our own research. Rarely does it come from any sort of formal education. When we consider how we can all benefit a bit more from a few lessons on financial literacy, it becomes clear just how important financial literacy is vital to an adult learners stability and progress.

The 29th Annual Florida Literacy Conference will hold over 60 sessions within 14 distinct tracks, including a first of its kind financial literacy track! For those interested in learning more about personal finance and sound money management, here’s a look at what the track has to offer so that you can set your conference schedule proactively.

Sessions include:

  • Financial Aid for the Nontraditional Student
    Did you know the Florida Bright Futures Scholarship can be awarded to GED students? This session covers avenues for funding higher education through federal, state, institutional, and local resources.
  • Money $ense
    How do you make sense out of money?  One of the ways is to look at your behavior, habits and past to determine why you use money in a certain way. This workshop explains how to educate your clients to understand and change their behavior.
  • Financial Literacy Resources for Adult Education
    There are many free resources for providing financial literacy in the Adult Education classroom. Receive sample brochures, website information  and the latest research/statistics for financial literacy.
  • Making Money Work for You
    This brief intro to financial literacy and consumer education is designed for teachers and tutors of ESOL and ABE students.  (Participants can also access this module via Florida TechNet’s “Moodle” trainings.)
  • Opening Doors to Home Ownership
    In this interactive session, we will share the Opening Doors to Home Ownership website designed for high school and adult learners.  The focus of this commercial-free website is to develop financial literacy through topics such as credit, budgeting, preparing for home ownership, and understanding mortgages.

Trying to imagine how adult learners manage financially, or rather how they don’t, can explain why learning even the most basic money management skills can greatly benefit the lives of our adult learners. Attend this track and bring back skills and practices your students that will immediately have an impact on their lives!

Celebrate Valentine’s Day with your learner!

Valentine’s Day is right around the corner! Whether you are celebrating with a special someone or plan on sharing the love with friends and family members, take this special occasion to do something fun with your ELL or ABE student. We put together a list of special activities for Valentine’s Day last year, so here are a few more things you can add to the list!

  • Help your student write a letter to a loved one. Perhaps your student has always wanted to write a letter to a significant other or family member, but didn’t feel capable of doing so. Work with your student and help them build their confidence so they can be proud to hand someone that letter. Here are a few printable cards that you can start with! 
  • Complete Valentine’s Day CLOZE Exercises with your ELL students. Work with them to find the word that sounds best in the blank area. If you have a more advanced learner, try this CLOZE exercise that goes along with a History Channel introduction. 
  • Have fun with a Valentine’s Day crossword puzzle that features colloquial phrases.
  • ESOL Courses put together a set of lesson plans and quizzes on Valentine’s day for beginner to expert ESOL students.
  • Watch this YouTube Video that says “I Love You” in 100 languages

You don’t know me

You watched me come to your class just like any other student. You greeted me with a warm smile and caring eyes. You asked me to have a seat in your inviting classroom. I watched you speak words I didn’t understand. I watched as the other students raised their hands to question your words. I sat in the cold seat as the minutes went by like hours. I heard you call my name, and I waited for you to ask me, who I was.

You don’t know the painstaking ordeal it took for me to get here this morning. You don’t know how it feels to wake up in the dark or the fear in my heart when I have to wait for the bus. You don’t know that I have no umbrella, or why my clothes are wet and unkempt when I enter your class. You think I can’t feel your disappointment in me.

You don’t know I am grateful that I have an opportunity to learn. You don’t know that despite my appearance, my color, my imperfections, I choose to look beyond your quizzical gaze.

You don’t know that last night’s cold dinner was from the dumpster outside that fancy restaurant, the one near the bridge where we sleep.

You probably wonder why I stare at you as you eat in front of the class. You don’t know the noise in my stomach is because I didn’t have enough change in my pocket for breakfast this morning.

You don’t know why I come to your class half-asleep. You don’t know how uncomfortable it is for three people to sleep in a car, to sleep with one eye open, just in case.

You don’t know how lucky I feel that, at least, we have a car.

You don’t know I am listening, I do care, and I do want to learn.

You don’t know the tremendous courage it takes to raise my hand to answer your questions. You don’t know the last time I was in a classroom and how they ridiculed me for not pronouncing the words correctly.

You don’t know that in your classroom, I am the luckiest person in the world.

You don’t know that I am your student.

-Submission by  Armando J. Gutierrez, Ed.D., The English Center

Meet FATDEC At The Florida Literacy Conference

Did you know that online courses for ABE, GED, ESOL, VPI, and Adult High School (AHS) are available to adult students in Florida?  These allow busy adults to still fit education into their lives when the option of physically going to a school or center is just not a possibility.

The Florida Adult & Technical Distance Education Consortium (FATDEC) will be having a meeting during the Florida Literacy Conference.  Please join us at 5 p.m., Thursday, May 6, to find out more about online course opportunities for adult students throughout Florida.  FATDEC members represent various schools, school districts, community colleges, and state colleges.  Partner members include Florida Virtual School (FLVS) and the Florida Association for Career and Technical Educators (FACTE).  By working together, we’re able to leverage our collective buying power and to help adult students who might otherwise not have an option for education. 

Come learn more & find out how you could be a part of this collaborative effort!

Knowledge Cafe = Good Coffee + Great Convo

This year’s Knowledge Cafe at the Florida Literacy Conference will offer flavored coffee and quality conversation about five popular topics of interest:

  1. Fundraising
  2. Student Retention & Persistence
  3. Career Planning & Transition from ABE to Post-Secondary Ed.
  4. Developing Community Partnerships
  5. Board Recruitment and Development

During the Knowledge Cafe session which starts at 3:15 p.m. on Thursday, May 6, you can choose to participate in 2 of the 5 roundtable discussions mentioned above.  A facilitator will be stationed at each table to keep the conversation going, but we know you won’t need much probing. 

Bring your business cards and brochures, and be prepared to share exciting information about your program – anything from notable accomplishments to new programs and projects.  Remember to keep your ears open and alert for Promising Practices, too!

Let us know which roundtables you’ll join at the Knowlege Cafe in the comments section below!