Tuesday, September 28, 2010

It's a Book

It’s a Book by Lane Smith
- video from YouTube

Roaring Brook Press, 2010
ISBN-13: 978-1596436060

Read On @ Your Local Library: CalCat or WorldCat

Thursday, September 23, 2010

National Punctuation Day: September 24

National Punctuation Day: September 24

Last year there was a baking contest—and what a delicious exercise that was !

This year NPD is trying something a bit more literary—the first National Punctuation Day® Haiku Contest, with the winners receiving a plethora of punctuation goodies.

Send your best 5-7-5 (syllables, that is) poetry to Jeff and let the literary games begin! Haikus must be received by September 30 to be considered for prizes.

To get you started, here is a haiku written by Jeff's friend Craig Harrison, one of the best sales and customer-service trainers—and prolific writers—I know.

Which colon to use?
Colon or semi-colon?
I’ll use a comma.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Reading Aloud

This part of Huxley's brave new world has come to pass
Daily Breeze: September 17, 2010 by Adell Shay

My husband, Jay, has been reading to me again. He's been doing that since his inaugural visit, me on the couch with the Hong Kong flu, him reading Edgar Allan Poe as I blew my nose in approval.

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Lately, he has been reading Aldous Huxley's essays.

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That's how he came to read me "Censorship and Spoken Literature," from "Tomorrow and Tomorrow and Tomorrow and other essays."

In the piece, Huxley discusses how economic censorship is enforced - however unintentionally and blindly - in democratic countries by the steady rise in the cost of producing books, plays and films, and the unwillingness of publishers, studios, etc. to sponsor projects unless they promise commercial success. The essay, written in 1954, described a theme that has, like most of Huxley's premises, become more glaringly true over time.

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He notes:
"Listen to the reading aloud ...; you will find yourself getting more out of it than you got when you read it to yourself - particularly if you were compelled to read it under the threat of not getting a credit. Printed, the Hundred Great Books are apt to remain unopened on the library shelves. Recorded they can be listened to painlessly - at meals, while washing up in bed on Sunday morning."

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Huxley ends the essay with the following recommendations:
1. "Make the best of mankind's literature of wisdom available on cheap, slow-playing records."
2. "Do the same, in each of the principal languages, for the best poetry written in that language. Also, perhaps, for a few of the best novels, plays, biographies and memoirs."
3. "Encourage manufacturers to turn out phonographs equipped to play these recordings and at the same time arrange for (low-cost) distribution.

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Aldous Huxley's fondest desire has been realized. READ MORE !

Listen On @ Your Local Library: CalCat or WorldCat

Brave new world - Read by Michael York
Aldous Huxley
Audio Partners, 2003

Monday, September 20, 2010

Right to Literacy Declaration: September 22

Declaration for the Right to Literacy
September 22 – 3:15pm

The Scroll will be presented to the co-chairs of the newly-formed House Adult Literacy Caucus, Congressman Dan Maffei and Congressman Phil Roe on the steps of the Capitol. This bipartisan caucus aims to bring attention to the critical need for literacy services for the estimated 32 million adults in the country who have below-basic reading skills.

. . . from Margaret Doughty, Literacy Powerline

invite your representatives to this historic event on September 22nd. See the sample invitation below:

Dear __________,

On behalf of more than 30,000 signatories, we invite you to join a delegation of adult literacy advocates and adult learners. On the steps of the Capitol, we will present the Declaration for the Right to Literacy scroll to the co-chairs of the newly-formed House Literacy Caucus, Congressman Dan Maffei and Congressman Phil Roe, on Wednesday, September 22nd, at 3:15pm.

This scroll began its journey across the United States 13 months ago, following the Right to Literacy Convention in Buffalo, New York. It highlights literacy as a means to individual self- sufficiency and community economic prosperity and calls upon our government to support initiatives that promote basic literacy skills for all Americans.

This coming Wednesday, we will call upon Congress and the Obama Administration to establish a National Task Force on Literacy, Numeracy, and Lifelong Learning. The National Task Force will create a comprehensive National Literacy Plan to raise literacy levels for adults and children.

We hope you will join us for this exciting and historic event. If you will be able to join us, please contact [put your contact information here].

(Your Name)

Not Sure Who to Contact = Click Here !
Find elected officials, including the president, members of Congress, governors, state legislators, and more.

. . . related links of interest:
Declaration for the Right to Literacy
Literacy Powerline: June 17, 2009

Right to Literacy Convention delegates from across the country determined and voted on the first United States Declaration for the Right to Literacy. The Right to Literacy Convention was part of the National Community Literacy Conference in Buffalo, New York on June 13, 2009.

Literacy leaders, using the model of the Seneca Falls Convention of 1848, convened from across the nation. The need was clear; tens of millions of adults and children do not have the skills needed to succeed in life. Literacy is the number one tool to change that plight. The right to literacy must be a national priority.

The resolutions support 5 pillars of literacy:
1. Building the Community
2. Strengthening the Family
3. Ensuring People’s Self-Determination
4. Improving the Workforce
5. Transforming the Literacy System

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Eward Fry: April 4, 1925 - Sept. 2, 2010

Educator, 85, created Fry Readability Graph
Coastline Pilot: September 9, 2010 by Barbara Diamond

Educator, author and environmentalist Edward Fry died in his Laguna Beach home Sept. 2, surrounded by his family. He was 85.

"He lost his battle with leukemia, but we all know how he loved life," his wife, Cathy, wrote friends. "He especially loved teaching, whether in a Rutgers classroom or up in the hills hiking with a grandson. It was a learning experience and he made sure he learned something new every day."

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"I always thought of Ed as a gentle, thoughtful and wise person," said City Councilwoman Verna Rollinger, a member of many of the same organizations. "He was a person always involved in good works."

Near the end of his life, a doctor asked him if there was anything he would like to do, if he could.

There was one more book he wanted to write, Fry replied.

He wrote more than 31 books and more than 100 articles, including "How to Teach Reading," developed for the Peace Corps; "The Reading Teacher's Book of Lists," with Jacqueline Kress; and a video series for series for Time Life, narrated by Dick Cavett and Bill Cosby.

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In 1950, Fry married Carol Addison. Fry became an expert in teaching. He invented the Fry Readability Graph, which is a widely used tool for assessing the readability level of almost any type of reading material. He was on the faculty of Loyola University in Los Angeles and Rutgers University in New Jersey where he became a full professor.

During 22 years at Rutgers, he was president of the National Reading Conference, the International Reading Assn., and the New Jersey Reading Assn. He is a member of the Reading Teacher Hall of Fame. READ MORE !

Monday, September 13, 2010

Literacy Tribune Newsletter: September 2010

Literacy Tribune: September 2010
The Adult Learner Network Newsletter

United Literacy, a non-profit organization, provides resources and support to adult literacy learners in the United States. Its aim is to make literacy education accessible and worthwhile for adult learners.

Main Story: Back to School
September marks the beginning of a new school year.

A History Lesson: The Great Depression
The Great Depression began on October 24, 1929—“Black Thursday.

Member Spotlight: September 8: International Literacy Day
Every day, around the world, adults like you are learning to read. And every day, around the world, adults are struggling with illiteracy as you once did. Illiteracy is not only an American problem. It is an international problem.

Organization Spotlight: A Letter to Readers
This issue of The Literacy Tribune marks our third anniversary. I, along with the staff and board of United Literacy, want to thank you for your continued support

Technology Watch: Ninite Website
by Daniel Pedroza, Writer and Learner

Ninite is a service that lets users install popular Windows applications automatically.

The Literacy Tribune is looking for adult learner writers.
Are you an adult learner ?
Do you want to write ?
Do you want to publish your writing ?

You can write about:
Your road to literacy
Your literacy organization
Literacy resources you like
You can write book reviews, poetry, short stories
You can write articles about health, finance, or technology

You can write just about anything !

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

International Literacy Day

International Literacy Day
September 8
Make A Difference !

Room To Read - Tweet For Literacy
Literacy Day 2010
Literacy has the power to lift families out of poverty in one generation and change the fate of entire communities, particularly in the developing world. Let's make this International Literacy Day really mean something and help more people learn to read. Check out the information below on what else you can do to make a difference!

Tweet a scrambled message to your followers so they know what it's like to be illiterate. They can click on the link to decipher it:

Wehn yuo cnnaot raed, noe hruendd ftory ccrhaetars maen noinhtg.
Hlep ptoorme goalbl latceriy.

International Literacy Day: 7 Easy Ways To Spread The Word
Huffingtonpost.com: September 7, 2010
You love books every day of the year, but there's only one that highlights the 774 million adults worldwide that UNESCO estimates are illiterate.Luckily, there's an easy way for even the busiest bibliophiles to share their love for reading with others who need a little help.

Here are just a few (see Slide Show).

Ten Tips for Parents to Help Children Learn to Read Outside the Classroom
On International Literacy Day, Save the Children Shares Simple Steps All Parents Can Take to Boost Children's Reading Skills
Save The Children: September 8, 2010To mark International Literacy Day and promote reading among children globally, Save the Children today shares 10 steps all parents can take to boost early reading skills among their children. The ten tips are part of a community strategies flipbook for parents and children that Save the Children developed for its global "Literacy Boost" program.

"Learning how to read should not be confined to the classroom," said Amy Jo Dowd, Ph.D., education research advisor for Save the Children. "There are many fun ways that parents, community members and even children can support other children in developing language and literacy skills as part of their daily life.

"Save the Children research from 2007 to 2008 found that children in developing countries were struggling to learn to read, even in classrooms that were child-friendly and in which the teachers used an active teaching and learning method. For example, 36 percent of the third graders tested in Ethiopia could not read one word correctly in a minute. In Nepal, that percentage was nearly 50 percent of the school-age children tested.

Things to do on the World Literacy Day:
~ Use your newsletter to spread the word about the importance of literacy.
~ Sponsor a book fair, using the proceeds to enhance your program’s outreach to learners.
~ Give a book as a gift. Include a note about the importance of literacy in adult life.
~ Establish a book discussion group with adult learners.
~ Form a reading promotion partnership with a public library or another basic skills/literacy program.

~ Take a field trip to a local literary landmark.
~ Make a collection of student writings. Get your local newspaper to review it.
~ Bring teachers, volunteers, and learners together to talk about favorite books.
~ Read books aloud with adult learners. READ MORE !

Canada Celebrates International Literacy Day
Human Resources and Skills Development Canada HRSDC

Canada joins countries around the world today to celebrate International Literacy Day. Established in 1965 by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), International Literacy Day is celebrated on September 8 with the goal of raising awareness about the importance of literacy and adult learning around the world.

Literacy and essential skills are important for all Canadians. They help us participate fully in the workplace, in families and in the community. The nine essential skills are: reading text, document use, numeracy, writing, oral communication, working with others, thinking skills, computer use and continuous learning. It is important to note that these skills complement and build on each other.

While overall, Canada has a highly-educated and highly-skilled population, there are still too many Canadians who lack the literacy and essential skills needed for full participation and success in the work force and in their daily lives.

Last year, Human Resources and Social Development Canada announced the creation of the Office of Literacy and Essential Skills to support the development of skills Canadians need for life, work and learning. Working with a network of partners and stakeholders, the Office of Literacy and Essential Skills helps Canadians build their literacy and essential skills.

We can all do our share in promoting literacy and essential skills within the family, workplaces and the community.

For a list of activities being held to mark International Literacy Day, visit NALD.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

The Humble Library, A Valuable Resource

The humble library, a valuable resource
With the information available at your public library, there's no such thing as a "cold call."

Star Tribune: September 5, 2010 by HARVEY MACKAY

When Ben Franklin founded the first public lending library in America in 1731, he probably had no idea what he would inspire. There is no better bargain than a library card, and what better time to sign up for one than September, library card sign-up month.

Studies show that children who use the library tend to perform better in school. They are also more likely to continue learning and exploring throughout their lives.

If you don't use the library for business, now is a good time to start. We can obtain a high percentage of the information we need via search engines using our home or work computers. But there are a lot of hidden business jewels available at your local library, and many of them can be accessed online.

The average small business or job-seeker is penalized by having limited research capabilities. Big companies with big budgets pay for expensive databases. With a mouse click, they can instantly gain access to company data, sort through research reports, and locate newspaper and trade journal articles. Small companies and individuals who can't afford premium access are left out. Unless they have a local library card.

Most libraries pay for premium subscription databases that you can use for free. Want to use Dun & Bradstreet, ReferenceUSA or Hoovers to research companies, competitors and build lead lists? There's a good chance your library subscribes to a company search database. Want to see if the company where you're making your next sales call or job interview has been featured in an article? How about if the person you're meeting with has been cited as an expert in an industry trade journal? The library most likely has the information.
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And as you know, a library card is still great for checking out books! Haven't read any good books lately? There's no time like the present to start. I love the convenience of my Kindle, but the feel of a real book in my hands is unmatched. You can even check out an audio book for your commute.

Book-club guidance, computer classes, periodicals, story time for the kids -- all through the doors of your library. And one of the most amazing features I like best: live technical help when I need it. Your library card is your ticket to the past and to the future.

Mackay's Moral: The library is a truly amazing resource -- check it out. READ MORE !

Harvey Mackay is a Minneapolis businessman and author.