Northwest Territories Literacy Council

This Week in Literacy

Friday, March 28th, 2008

Community Events and Information

PGI Fundraiser for Literacy
Tickets for our two fundraiser evenings, April 14 and 15, 2008 at the Northern Arts and Culture Centre are on sale now at the Yellowknife Book Cellar. Starting at 6:00 pm come on out and putt against your favourite celebrity for a donation or buy a raffle ticket and win a great prize! The celebrity concert hosted by Shelagh Rogers will start at 7:00. Our performers are the Four Leaf Clover Jazz Combo, Murray McLauchlan, Ian Thomas, Connie Kaldor, Mike Stevens, Jonathan Torrens, and home grown celebrity Godson. Tickets are $30 for adults and $15 for students.

Premier’s Council of the Federation Literacy Award
Literacy skills are crucial to daily living, employment, citizenship, personal advancement and enjoyment. In order to bring recognition to literacy achievements, the premiers of Canada created the Council of the Federation Literacy Award. The 2008 Northwest Territories Council of the Federation Literacy Award will honour the achievements of a learner, who has overcome obstacles and demonstrated outstanding progress in the pursuit of literacy skills in any of the NWT official languages. NWT learners of all ages, who have excelled in literacy achievement, improved personal literacy levels and helped others to improve their literacy levels, are eligible for nomination. The learner must have been enrolled in classes within the past 18 months.

The Great Northern Canada Writing Contest
Do you have a story about the North? The NorthWords Writers Festival and Above & Beyond, Canada’s Arctic Journal invite you to enter the Great Northern Canada Writing Contest. To enter, write 1000 words about life in northern Canada. Cash prizes, plus publication in Above & Beyond. For more information and contest details go to

The 2008 Canada Post Community Literacy Awards!

That’s right, the Canada Post Community Literacy Awards are just around the corner with the opening of the 2008 Call for Nominations period on March 24, 2008. The Canada Post Community Literacy Awards is a national awards program dedicated to celebrating the achievements of adult learners and of educators who have helped them learn to read and write. Nominations close on May 23, 2008.

Winners in the Individual Achievement Award category will receive a cash award of $300 and a personalized Certificate of Achievement. Educator Award category winners each receive a cash award of $500 and a personalized Certificate of Achievement.

To obtain your free copy of the 2008 Canada Post Community Literacy Awards booklet, write to:

2008 Canada Post Community Literacy Awards
2701 Riverside Dr
Suite N0020
Ottawa ON K1A 0B1


Northern Arts and Culture Centre's 4th Annual Festival of Stories

The Northern Arts and Culture Centre will be holding their 4th Annual Festival of Stories from May 29 to 31, 2008.

When: Thursday, May 29, 2008 ‐‐ Saturday, May 31, 2008
Where: Northern Arts and Culture Centre, 4701 ‐ 52nd Avenue, Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada
Time: 6:30 pm
Contact Information: Northern Arts and Culture Centre
4701 ‐ 52nd Avenue, Yellowknife, NWT
Tel.: (867) 873‐4950 Fax: (867) 669‐9826

Bread and Roses Writing Contest

The Bread and Roses Writing Contest started as a celebration of International Women’s Day and has developed as a means of highlighting emergent women’s issues. The 2008 Bread and Roses Contest theme is: I’m going to be nicer to me. The purpose is to have women discuss, reflect, brainstorm, share, and write down their ideas about how women can be better to themselves when they are learning and how they can stop putting themselves and others down. Key information is:

  1. Submit writing electronically by April 30th, 2008.
  2. Review the flyer to make sure your learner is eligible before you submit her writing. If everything’s okay, send a completed Permission and Contact Information Form along with the writing. If there is more than one submission, you do not need to fill out the mailing address details more than once ‐ just make sure we know for each piece of writing: the learner’s name, the title of the piece, your name, contact information for your literacy organization, and the details of the permission the learner gives.
  3. A diverse panel of judges, drawn from published authors, will select 12 winners. The learner and the literacy organization will receive a small gift of acknowledgement and achievement.
  4. Send all submissions to elaine.gaber‐

If you have any questions, email or call Elaine Gaber‐Katz at 416‐530‐0253.

Fundraising Lessons Learned at April 1 Brown Bag Lunch

Volunteer NWT invites you to attend the Fundraising Lessons Learned with guest, David Gilday, April 1 at noon at the Yellowknife Public Library. As Fundraising Chair for the 2008 Arctic Winter Games, David raised $4 million. David will make a brief presentation and answer questions about what worked and what didnʹt work during his fundraising efforts. Volunteer NWT invites leaders of voluntary organizations to meet the first Tuesday of each month to share information and learn from each other. Out of town people can contact for a summary of the discussion. For more information, contact Aggie at 873‐4588.

Scholarship and Grant applications
The Yellowknife Community Foundation is pleased to announce its 2008 call for Scholarship and Grant applications. Annual scholarships are available for individuals studying in the fine and performing arts, sport and physical activity, language studies and aviation training. A wide range of grants are also available for registered charities. For further information: or email

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In the News

Will budget address workplace learning needs?
By Peter Sawyer, Moncton Regional Learning Council
Published Tuesday March 18th, 2008

The opening paragraph of the March 2007 report published by the Canadian Council on Learning stresses the urgency of improving workplace learning. ʺWithin the next decade, our biggest challenge will be ensuring we have enough workers and that they have the skills and knowledge they need. Without a strong commitment to and investment in workplace learning, there is no certainty that Canada will be up to this challenge.ʺ

In October 2007, Statistics Canada published Adult Learning in Canada; A Comparative Perspective based on the results of the 2003 Adult Literacy and Life Skills Survey. Included in the many factual statements, tables and graphs was the persistent theme of the lack of investment and participation by Canadians in adult education and training. To read the whole article go to

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New Resources and Websites

Live, Horse, ‘Til the Grass Grows: A Study of Family Literacy in New Brunswick: Work, Outcomes, and Best Practices
Published by the Literacy Coalition of New Brunswick (LCNB), Feb 2008

To download a copy go to‐web.pdf

A Health Literacy Manual for Older Adults (2006)

We know from the 2003 International Adult Literacy and Learning Skills Survey (IALSS), that many seniors have difficulty reading and writing. Poor literacy skills seriously compromise seniorsʹ health and well‐being: if seniors have difficulty reading and writing, they may not able to obtain health information or may not be able to understand instructions. This manual is a compilation of eight health literacy lesson plans to be used by literacy tutors and health educators who work with seniors. These lesson plans will help older adults enhance their literacy skills while learning about health topics that are of interest to them. In addition to short readings on the above topics, the lessons also include a variety of literacy activities.

The lesson plans are entitled as follows:

  1. Determinants of Health for Older Adults
  2. Active Living
  3. Healthy Eating
  4. Understanding Food Labels
  5. Food Safety
  6. Visiting your Health Provider
  7. Understanding Medication

To download a copy go to

Best books and links for tutors to try!
By: Halifax Community Learning Network

This document contains a list of books, web sites and other learning tools that an adult literacy tutor would find useful. The resources have been organized according to subject such as math, early readers, spelling, etc. The Halifax Community Learning Network compiled this list of resources after hosting a series of Tutor Learning Circles in 2007. The Learning Circles were an opportunity for volunteer tutors to discuss materials that they had found useful in their work as adult literacy tutors. To download go to

Reading / Writing / Listening / Grammar / Vocabulary / Phonics

    This site covers all the above and is especially designed for adult learners. There are tips for tutors and teaching points for learners that can be printed off. When an area has been taught there are very creative, fun games and quizzes that the learner can do independently to see if they have learned the area covered. Well worth a look.

    Voice of America News and special interest articles using a base vocabulary of 1500 words. Intended for ESL learners but relevant for Literacy learners too. Articles are read very slowly using high frequency vocabulary. Click link “English teaching” for reading exercises.

    This is a site linked to a newspaper for adult learners produced in Alberta. There are learners’ stories on line here, with text to speech software and pictures to go along with the text. The site would work well for literacy and ESL learners. The design is very uncluttered and simple … ideal for adult learners just beginning to use the computer.

    A free interactive learning site which teaches everyday skills … the scenarios have audio, so use headphones. The Everyday Life section teaches Banking and using ATM; checking a receipt; grocery list; measuring; filling a prescription; classifieds; job applications; bus map and more

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Lisa Campbell

Community Literacy Coordinator
NWT Literacy Council
Box 761
Yellowknife, NT X1A 2N6
Toll Free: 1-866-599-6758
Phone: (867) 873-9262
Fax : (867) 873-2176
Web Site:

The NWT Literacy Council is a non-profit, non-government agency dedicated to supporting the development of literacy in all official languages of the NWT.

NWT Literacy Council logo

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