English as a Second Language
This church assists our immigrant neighbors by providing classes in English as a Second Language. Most lessons happen online via Zoom. We have classes 4 days and 4 evenings during the week. Each class is typically 2 hours long and most students attend 2 classes a week. Many students attend more than 2 classes. Working with the Literacy Council Wilco we provide material for all of our students to use at home and during our classes.
Anyone can learn to be an ESL teacher. You can teach one or two days a week. As long as you speak English, and like people, there is a role for you to help. IF you would like to observe a class please contact Mary Hengstebeck.
The students show their appreciation in many ways. Jesus wrote us a poem
Driven to Success: ESL Students
On the road trip of life, we are often lucky enough to come across people who fill our near-empty tanks with inspiration. Sometimes it’s in the news, and sometimes it’s in a film or book. But sometimes, it’s in the hopeful face across the desk from you.
The students’ motivation to succeed is obvious in the dedication they demonstrate in coming to class regularly and the motives that compel them to do so. Many students must carve out time from their busy lives to attend as many as 3 to 5 classes per week. Students from 19 different countries faithfully gather during the week to make meaningful connections. They are eager to make friends, to learn the conversations skills necessary to effectively communicate with their children’s teachers, their doctors, their communities. For some, success is found in being able to tell stories about their weekly encounters with others using the “First, then, and finally” construct.
As a way of celebrating the strides made by our driven ESL students, each session concludes with a party. Students bring friends and family to celebrate completing 10 weeks of instruction. We enjoy games, good food, and music. The end-of-session party is an opportunity for our students to acknowledge their own accomplishments, as well as those of their classmates. It is a time to congratulate each other and offer encouragement for future endeavors. This would be a great time for you and your family to come and meet these wonderful people and wish them continued success on their individual journeys.
Literacy Council Support Certificate
The Literacy Council of Williamson County made a presentation to the Leander City Council and gave them a certificate for their support of literacy by providing space. The Live Oak ESL team are providing the volunteers. The picture includes Mary Hengstebeck, the Mayor of Leander, Robert Pinhero, and the director of Parks and Recreation.
Teaching every day English to adults who speak another language.
2021 Monthly Reports
- We have 56 students and I will be testing 3 more this weekend
- We have 4 South Western University students who observe and one who also listens to students read Raz-Plus stories on an evening when I have to switch between levels (due to lack of full time teachers)
- A previous teacher recruited some volunteers. Most are observing but one is teaching.
- We have 3 students studying to become U.S citizens
- I sent 370 text to former and current local students about Heating and Air Conditioning Vocational training and a number of students are being evaluated to see if they can join the class
- We have a tentative Literacy Team (ABE and ESL) that will focus on recruiting volunteers for administrative, tutoring, and teaching tasks
- We have a few students who are going to 7 classes a week and more who go to 4 classes a week-
- Raz-Plus helpers (they listen to students read) have increased. One helper is also using the tool for her 5 year old son who has been having trouble in school this year. He is loving it.
No report: classes in transition
July finished the Bartlett Reading Program and our summer ESL session. The volunteer readers thought it was a good experience. We have sent a questionnaire to the school to get the school’s feedback. Hopefully we will receive something this week.
The Raz-Plus books have been a hit with all levels of students. We have 5 adult volunteers (including my daughter and one church member) who are continuing to meet with ESL students weekly to have the students read to them. We have some very beginning students who are too shy to attend Zoom meetings that are also using this resource. I will include information about the cost of this program later in this note.
6 of the Intermediate students have started their own English practice class. They meet for 1 hour on Tuesday and Friday evenings. They share their English Conversation reports via breakout rooms, then one student leads discussing a topic and then others discuss the topic. They rotate who presents the topic. The main organizer of this effort said he might be able to help me teach a Monday evening class in Sept. I would prepare the slides and discuss with him and he would lead during the time I am working with the beginning students.I have configured 7 computers and one iPad for loaning students. (6 of the computers were paid for by LOUU funds). Delivered one computer who lives in Round Rock. She doesn’t have a car. Met with the students to get required paperwork and to explain the programs. (At least one hour meeting with each student).
Have started students who have Windows computers with the OpenBook program. Have meet via Zoom with each one to help them configure the program and to explain the different parts of the program (meetings take 30 to 45 minutes)
Joel Bercu posted information about our Leander Library problem to a facebook group. As a result of this group’s work, the Leander Library has changed their mind and will let us use space again. In the meantime I had help moving all of the material to my house. When it is safe to have in-person class, I will need someone with a truck or trailer to help me move stuff back. Due to the age of our volunteers, we will meet via Zoom until the COVID situation improves.
- I believe we are OK for the Leander day and evening classes. The evening classes will probably continue to Zoom.
- The Cedar Park morning classes will probably meet in person. I haven’t confirmed it with one teacher who lives in Georgetown. If she wants to continue in Zoom, we will have a mixed solution on Mon. and Th. mornings.
- I might have to reduce the beginning Cedar Park evening class to one day and the intermediate class will still meet twice a week and hopefully at the church.
We have started our March to end of May session