Become an AmeriCorps member at the Literacy Council in 2019/20

Are you looking for the opportunity to make a difference? The Literacy Council has an exciting opportunity to join our team for a year! Apply today to become the Literacy Council’s next Recruitment and Awareness Coordinator through AmeriCorps. Please follow the link below to fill out your application.

 

Join AmeriCorps and “get things done”! Become a NC LiteracyCorps member at the Literacy Council of Buncombe County and improve literacy and English language skills in our community.

The Literacy Council of Buncombe County will host one full-time NC LiteracyCorps (an AmeriCorps Project) member beginning September 2019. The application period is now open and closes August 1.

The NC LiteracyCorps places members at literacy organizations, providing literacy tutoring to youth and adults while building program capacity through volunteer management. The Literacy Council of Buncombe County’s member will: 

• provide direct service tutoring 
• recruit and orient volunteers
• recruit and support students 
• develop community partnerships 
• conduct visibility campaigns 
• manage a book gifting program 
• participate in national days of service

The Literacy Council’s full-time member will provide 1,700 hours of service with a 10-month commitment, receiving a living allowance of up to $13,992. Upon successful completion of requirements, the member will be eligible to receive an additional educational award.

Requirements to serve with the NC LiteracyCorps are that the member must:
• be at least 17 years old
• have a high school diploma or equivalent
• successfully pass statewide and national criminal background checks
• be a U.S. Citizen, National, or Legal Permanent Resident of the United States

The Literacy Council is committed to creating a diverse environment and is proud to be an equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, gender, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, national origin, genetics, disability, age, or veteran status.

Please follow the link for more details and to apply online: http://nclc.web.unc.edu/join-nclc/americorps-member/ You may also contact Nureena Faruqi (faruqi@email.unc.edu) or Ashley Lasher (ashley@litcouncil.com).

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2019 Spelling Bee Exceeds Goals

Literacy Council’s 28th Annual Spelling Bee, Beauty and the Bee, was an incredible success! We set a goal to raise $7,000 to help us to continue to provide free literacy tutoring and resources to children and adults in our community, with actual fundraising exceeding $11,000. This is an all-time record for our spelling bee events — way to go everyone!

 

This year’s crowned champions, Soomo Learning’s Spelling Beasts

 

First runner up went to team Extended Metaphors

 

Second runner up went to team SpellCheckYourselfBeforeYouWreckYourself

 

Best team costume awarded to The Queen Bees

 

The intense (and hilarious) competition finally found a winner after four or five (we lost count) championship spell-off rounds, with Soomo Learning’s Spelling Beasts crowned as the victors!

See the action on WLOS!

First Prize Winner The Spelling Beasts won four tickets to see David Sedaris live at the US Cellular Center on April 14.

First Runner Up Extended Metaphors won three fun passes to Nantahala Outdoor Center and travel coffee mugs from The 828 Asheville Radio Group.

Second Runner Up SpellCheckYourselfBeforeYouWreckYourself received a Hi-Wire Brewing group tour for up to 20 people.

Best Team Costume awarded to The Queen Bees received gift certificates to Mr. K’s Used Books, Music and More.

Highest Fundraiser Spellbound by Food received three Spirit Airlines tickets.

Second Highest Fundraiser The Queen Bees received a 10-visit pass to the JCC Aquatic Center.

A huge thank-you to all the teams who competed this year: Bees’ Knees (Janet Jennings & friends); Bees Louise (Buncombe Partnership for Children); Extended Metaphors (Flatiron Writer’s Room & Gold Leaf Literary Agency); The Southern Spelles (Malaprop’s Bookstore and Cafe); SpellBinders (ESOL tutor team); Spellbound by Food (Chestnut/Corner Kitchen/Chupacabra Latin Cafe); SpellCheckYourselfBeforeYouWreckYourself (Ben Fehsenfeld & friends); Spelling Beasts (Soomo Learning); Team Chai Pani (Chai Pani Restaurant); The Queen Bees (Adult Education tutor team); Those Who Spelt It Dealt It (Hobbit Hawes & friends); Word Buzzards (John Huie & friends)

Thank you to our wonderful emcee David Ostergaard; judges Peter Elgie, Robin Corden Payne, Tom Chalmers, and Emily Spies; and pronouncer Ken from the Mix 96.5 Afternoon Drive!

A big warm hug and thank-you to our in-kind donors: The Mothlight; Mellow Mushroom; Blue Moon Water; Cecilia’s Kitchen; Black Mountain Brewing; Grace Baptist West Asheville

More pictures!

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Reading Tips for Parents and Caregivers with Babies and Young Children

Did you know that reading to your child is one of the single most important things you can do for their educational future? Read on to learn tips for reading to your child from birth until kindergarten.

 

Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library has lots of experience with reading, and we encourage good reading habits for parents, caregivers, and their children. When your child receives their Imagination Library books, we ask you to do the following:

  • Begin reading to your child immediately
  • Read to your child at least five days per week
  • Read books multiple times
  • Snuggle, ask questions, notice letters, make sounds, have fun!

Birth to 2 Years Old

  • Begin reading to your child immediately. It may seem silly to read to very young children, but it will help you bond with your child and establish an important foundation for future learning. The earlier you start, the better the results!
  • Read to your child every day. Children who are avid readers were read to every day from a very young age. Make reading a regular event in your home.
  • Read books multiple times. Reading the same book over (and over) reinforces language development and encourages children to participate in the reading activity.

Reading = snuggling!

  • Read for short periods with your child on your lap or next to you. Being close to you is likely as important as the reading.

Keep books handy!

  • Set up a space to keep your child’s books where they will be accessible.

Be flexible!

  • Take a break if your child is unhappy or fussy. Read multiple times per day for short periods rather than one longer period if that works better.

2 to 3 Years Old

  • Begin reading to your child immediately. It’s never too early to start reading to your child. Reading to very young children helps develops early literacy skills.
  • Read to your child every day. Children who are avid readers were read to every day from a very young age. Make reading a regular event in your home.
  • Read books multiple times. Reading the same book over (and over) builds vocabulary and encourages children to participate in the reading activity.

Ask questions!

  • Ask your child simple questions about the book
    Examples: What was your favorite part of the book? Where did Corduroy go when he explored the store?

Notice letters!

  • Point out letters in the text. Example: Let’s find the m’s on this page

Flip it!

  • Have your child open the cover and turn the pages of the book while you read.

Name it!

  • Ask your child to name items in the pictures before reading the text.

Chime in!

  • Encourage your child to “read” with you on familiar books and repetitive text.

3 to 5 Years Old

  • Continue reading to your child as he/she ages. Children continue to benefit from being read to in the pre-school years, building essential early literacy skills as they grow into readers.
  • Read to your child every day. Children who have high interest in reading are read to every day, often by multiple people.Make reading a regular event that everyone participates in.
  • Read books multiple times. Reading the same book over (and over) encourages children to participate in the reading activity through contributing to the reading and asking questions.

Think about it!

  • Ask your child questions about the characters or the story that require predicting, imagining, or making inferences.
    Examples: How do you think Madeline feels right now? If you were Peter Rabbit, what would you do?

Make it relevant!

  • Relate books to your child’s life.
    Example: Can you think of a time you were reluctant to try something new like Little Burro?

Begin with sounds!

  • Point out beginning sounds.
    Example: Did you hear a word that started with the same MMMMM sound as your name?

Name it!

  • Practice letter names.
    Example: Name the letters you recognize on the cover of the book.

Read it!

  • Encourage your child to read common words.
    Example: This word, t-h-e, is the. Help me read “the” when you see it in the book

Encourage curiosity!

  • Respond to your child’s questions about letters, numbers, and reading.

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Join the Literacy Council Team in 2018/19

Are you looking for the opportunity to make a difference? The Literacy Council has an exciting opportunity to join our team for a year! Apply today to become the Literacy Council’s next Recruitment and Awareness Coordinator through AmeriCorps. Please follow the link below to fill out your application.

 

Position Description

Join AmeriCorps and “get things done”! Become a NC LiteracyCorps member at the Literacy Council of Buncombe County and improve literacy and English language skills in our community.

NC LiteracyCorps members provide literacy tutoring to youth and adults while building program capacity through volunteer tutor recruitment and management. The LiteracyCorps member working with the Literacy Council of Buncombe County will have the opportunity to:

  • provide direct service tutoring,
  • recruit and orient volunteers,
  • recruit and support students,
  • develop and enhance community partnerships,
  • conduct visibility campaigns,
  • manage a book gifting program, and
  • participate in national days of service.

The Literacy Council’s NC LiteracyCorps member will begin in August 2018 and complete their service year in July 2019. Over the course of the year, the member will become an integral part of the Literacy Council’s full-time team, providing 1,700 hours of service.

The initial application period closes May 21. 2018 but will be accepting applications on a rolling basis until the position is filled.

Benefits to the Member

NC LiteracyCorps members receive a living allowance of up to $13,732 and qualify for limited health insurance reimbursements. Upon completion of requirements, they are eligible to receive an educational award of $5,920. NC LiteracyCorps members receive training in volunteer management, literacy issues, tutoring strategies, diversity, and leadership skills. The member placed with the Literacy Council will also have a professional development stipend to participate in conferences and seminars throughout the service year.

Qualifications

To serve with the NC LiteracyCorps, the member must:

  • be at least 18 years old
  • have a high school diploma or equivalent
  • successfully pass statewide and national criminal background checks
  • be a U.S. Citizen, National, or Legal Permanent Resident of the United States

Preferred qualifications are:

  • a deep commitment to providing educational opportunities to economically disadvantaged adults and youth and/or those who are from other cultures
  • excellent interpersonal skills with the ability to work effectively with staff, volunteers, and members of the community
  • outstanding written and oral communication skills
  • a working knowledge of office technology including Microsoft Office suites
  • ability to work independently and collaboratively
  • creative, strategic thinker with excellent organizational skills and ability to track deadlines
  • available to work occasional evenings
APPLY HERE TODAY

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Two Calls to Make This Week in Support of Literacy Council Operations

Call #1: Support AmeriCorps

The Literacy Council of Buncombe County has hosted four AmeriCorps members through the NC LiteracyCorps. These four members have:

  • AmeriCorps LogoContributed over 60,000 hours to the Literacy Council’s programs
  • Tutored 11 ESOL, Adult Education, and Augustine Project students
  • Oriented over 450 new volunteer tutors
  • Updated our website (twice!)
  • Managed our social media accounts
  • Launched and managed Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library
  • Taught early literacy workshops for 75 families

We hope that anyone who appreciates this worthwhile program will contact Congress and ask them to protect the federal investment in our national service programs like AmeriCorps. This nonpartisan program means so much to our tutors, students and community. Call or contact your congressional representatives online. Click here for a resource to make it easy for you.

Call #2: Oppose the Repeal of the “Johnson Amendment”

The “Johnson Amendment,” in place since 1954, lays out the ground rules that help insulate 501(c)(3) organizations from partisan politics. The law provides that charitable nonprofits:

  • Tutor and Adult Education studentcan’t endorse or oppose candidates for office;
  • can’t coordinate their activities with candidates, political parties, or PACs; and
  • must refrain from making political campaign contributions. 

“Eliminating the law would mean that individual 501(c)(3) nonprofits could come to be regarded as Democratic charities or Republican charities instead of the nonpartisan problem solvers they are,” said David Heinen from the NC Center for Nonprofits. “…this would diminish the public’s overall trust in the nonprofit sector and consequently would limit nonprofits’ effectiveness in carrying out their mission-related programs and activities. The law also ensures that donors’ charitable contributions are used for the charitable, religious, and educational purposes for which they are intended rather than being diverted to political parties or candidates.” Click here to read more from the NC Center for Nonprofits.

Please consider calling your congressional representatives and ask them to protect our nation’s nonprofits by preserving current federal tax law protections that prohibit 501(c)(3) organizations from endorsing, opposing, or contributing to political candidates.

Update 3/31/17: The Literacy Council of Buncombe County joined other nonprofits across the nation in signing on to a Community Letter in Support of Nonpartisanship. Read it by clicking here.

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