Tag Archives: Family Literacy

Thank you for your support of Family Literacy!

Give to the Max Day 2016 was successful thanks to the generosity of several donors. We are happy to report that we easily met a $500 matching gift that was given in memory of Staff Sergeant Adam Thomas. Several donors gave in memory of Adam on #GTMD16 and in the days that followed. We raised nearly $1,800, which is a great start to our $30,000 Families Learning Family Literacy Campaign. These funds will allow us to add one or more family literacy classes in 2017 with an early childhood and adult education teacher working side by side with volunteer tutors to teach and learn from English language learner families.

We hope to finish our first targeted campaign by the end of February in time for a celebration on March 2, 2017, which also happens to be “Read Across America Day.” If you are interested in learning more about our plans or want to be involved, please contact Candace at 507-401-7337, or email literacy.swmn@gmail.com.



Babies and literacy

Will and I have had the joy this week of welcoming a new granddaughter to our family. Today while we were fixing supper for everyone, we overheard our son-in-law talking to our 2 1/2 year-old grandson. Dad was telling this new big brother that he was going to be able to teach his little sister the names for so many things as they spend time together. This little girl is lucky for many reasons, but for certain she is going to grow up in a word-rich environment.

Literacy Volunteers of SW MN programs support family literacy for all ages, including babies. The Association for Library Service to Children’s initiative Babies Need Words Every Day focuses on bridging the 30 Million Word Gap by having libraries support parents in building their children’s literacy skills from birth. Here’s a booklist from ALSC with titles that are good choices for reading with babies. Check with your local library to find these books for your own children, consider these as good books to give as gifts, or select these books to donate to organizations like Literacy Volunteers that provide family literacy services and books to families who are developing their literacy skills.

Keep up the good reading! Candace

babies need words

New Family Literacy Program

We are excited to offer a new ECFE/Family Literacy program for parents and their young children whose native language (or one of their languages) is Spanish. We will have a Spanish-language interpreter to help our teachers and tutors communicate with parents and children.  Cornerstone United Methodist Church here in Marshall, MN has agreed to host our Monday morning class. Our ECFE/Karen Family Literacy class is now in its second year. Thanks to funding from United Way of Southwest Minnesota and the Marshall Community Foundation, we are able to expand our outreach.

People may wonder why culture and language specific family literacy classes are necessary. A 2014 report Immigrant Parents and Early Childhood Programs from the Migrant Policy Institute describes the barriers to progress that these families face, especially those families where the parents have limited English proficiency. Being in an early childhood classroom setting with language support helps the adults learn English along with a knowledge of important educational, civic, and social service systems. They learn to support their children’s development of literacy and numeracy skills in both English and their primary language, which will promote their success in kindergarten and beyond. The families benefit from these opportunities, and ultimately our schools, communities, and workplaces benefit too.

If you would be interested in volunteering with this new program, please call us at 507-401-7337 or email literacy.swmn@gmail.com.

Family Lit Class poster Spanish


Join the SMSU Homecoming Parade

eagle_lake_blmNo real horses will be in LV*SW*MN’s parade unit in the SMSU Homecoming Parade on October 11, 2014, but we want to show off our “Mustangs Rising…and Reading” that morning.  Please note that children must be 8 years old or older to walk without a parent or guardian.  Here’s the schedule and details:

9 a.m.: Parents and their children will meet at the Marshall-Lyon County Public Library, 201 C Street, to finish decorating and provide signed a permission slip.

10 a.m.: Everyone will head to our parade line-up  on East Lyon. Only parade participants can park on East Lyon. Meet us there if you’re running late.

11 a.m. The parade starts. We will be walking, so dress for the weather and wear comfortable shoes.

Children must be 8 or older and able to walk the distance. Parents (and any younger children) are welcome to walk with us. No unaccompanied child may participate without a signed permission slip & waiver. These will be at the library, on this website, and available that morning.

Parents must meet us at the end of the parade route at East Main and North 5th Street on the corner by St. James Episcopal Church. We will ask that you initial the sign-in sheet to indicate you have your child in hand! We will give you our cell phone numbers that morning just in case.