The Literacy Council offers small group classes to help adults learn to read, write and speak English. See class descriptions below and download our current class schedule for dates, times and locations.
Registration is required. Please contact us for information about eligibility and registration procedures.
Computer Literacy Classes
Classes are offered for both Basic Computer Skills and to introduce the use of Microsoft Word to students who already have some basic computer skills. The Basic Computer Skills class teaches very basic computer skills for beginners including creating a simple email address and identifying basic computer components. Students in either class must know enough English to understand directions and explanations.
In Writing 1 students will review basic points of grammar and learn to write complete structurally sound sentences. They will also be able to write cogent paragraphs on specific topics. They will be able to edit paragraphs for basic grammar errors. They will also be able to read paragraphs and distinguish the main idea of the paragraph.
This is a more advanced course than Writing 1. Students will be asked to write paragraphs using a cogent argument and persuasive language. They will continue to learn basic grammar and edit paragraphs for errors in grammar and structure. They will read paragraphs and discuss main ideas and the value of supporting materials.
This is a more advanced class than Writing 2. Students will write clear and logical argument, process, cause and effect, and narrative paragraphs. Students will write one 5 paragraph essay using rules of grammar, syntax, and sentence structure. Students will read and discuss Tuck Everlasting and be able to write down the main idea of the story in their own words.
The Basic Pronunciation Class is for beginning English students. We will focus on the sounds and other aspects of spoken English (stress, intonation, etc.) which are most problematic for the students participating in the class. The goal of the class is for the students to improve their ability to understand spoken English and to clearly express themselves when speaking in English.
The Advanced Pronunciation Class is for intermediate/advanced English students. We focus on American English pronunciation –- learning to distinguish between different sounds when listening and learning to correctly pronounce the sounds in speech. We also address other aspects of spoken English, including stress and intonation. The class includes a lot of opportunities for practicing both listening and speaking, with the goal of improving the students’ understanding of spoken English and their ability to clearly express themselves in spoken English.
English as a Second Language (ESL) Civics is for intermediate to advanced students. The goal of this class is to let students practice their English language and communication skills in authentic life skills settings. Some of our lessons in the classroom will introduce vocabulary and background for history, government, culture and civic opportunities in our city and county. Other lessons will be spent out in the community visiting locations related to our topics. We will listen, talk and learn in English. There are no textbooks or tests, just the enjoyment of learning. Please be aware that this class is not designed for taking the Citizenship Test. However, the content will help in citizenship preparation. Also, we will be walking quite a bit around the city.
Conversation ~ Beginning, Intermediate, Advanced and Student-Led
The Beginning, Intermediate and Advanced Conversation Classes are for adults who want to improve their ability to speak and understand American English. Practice conversation skills and pronunciation while learning about many subjects, including holidays, food, travels, family, life skills, current events, American history, common idioms and more.
In the Student-Led Conversation Class, students meet every other week to plan the class and class strategies. Students themselves give presentations and mini-presentations about their country of origin, first year in the United States, or anything else of interest to them. Idioms are discussed. We also read the newspaper News for You for practice in pronunciation and break down into smaller groups to have discussions. Students are encouraged to socialize and get to know one another and make friendships. You are allowed to eat in the classroom, so it is suggested that you bring a lunch or snack. Sometimes students bring in food to share. Other times, we go on field trips especially in the summer.
ESL Conversation and Beginning Literacy Class
The ESL Beginning Literacy Class is for adults with little to no English language proficiency. The class will focus on building basic vocabulary needed for everyday communication and life skills.
Beginning Reading and Phonics Class
The Beginning Reading and Phonics Class is for beginning English students. The focus is on initial, ending, and within-word sound patterns as well as building vocabulary with word sorts and applying what we learn to basic reading of short stories and poems.
ESL Intermediate Class
The ESL Intermediate Class incorporates reading, listening, speaking, grammar and conversation. Reading for leisure and expanding socialization through conversation will be encouraged to help students leave their comfort zone and engage outside their native community. The class will provide tools necessary to use English, rather than their native language, to engage in our society. Students must be literate in their native language and have some basic English education to participate in this class.
The Health Literacy class is offered to help students understand basic healthcare and how the American healthcare system works. Terms reviewed include anatomy, medical specialties, wellness efforts (diet and exercise), doctor appointments or Emergency Department visits (what to expect and how to prepare), and basic insurance terms. The class is held at Frederick Memorial Hospital.