At the weekend I attended the first two days of a four-day training course to enable me to tutor adults in reading and writing. I was one of seven trainees – six women and one man. An interesting group of people!
A good part of the training was informing us of the facts about literacy in Australia and why some people have fallen through the cracks. It also highlighted that people with literacy issues come from all parts of society. There was a strong focus on “setting up for success”.
We watched a video of a tutor with a student where the student has the courage to write a little story on her own for the first time. She is incredibly excited when the tutor arrives. The student proudly tells her what she has done and says she thinks she got all the spelling correct. In fact, there were a lot of spelling errors. The tutor read the article with her and then asked the student if she thought any of the words didn’t look right. The whole process was led by the student. She agreed that some words didn’t look quite right and she was gently coached to find what the errors were. It was amazing how the tutor led her to find a missing letter or an incorrect letter. She gave a tick to every letter that was correct – there were no crosses or red pens anywhere.
My next two days training are in early August and after that I will be let loose on a student! I am looking forward to that :-). That reminds me, I have two assignments to do before then.