Northwest Territories Literacy Council

This Week in Literacy

Friday, September 12th, 2008

Community Events and Information

Literacy Dates for Next Year
NWT Literacy Week                                     September 29 – October 3, 2008
National Family Literacy Day                     January 27, 2009
Aboriginal Languages Month                      March 2009
International Children's Book Day              April 2, 2009
World Book Day                                           April 23, 2009

NWT Literacy Week
NWT Literacy Week is only one month away!  Get together with others in your community and plan a literacy week event.  You can find ideas on our website at  We also sent out NWT Literacy Week packages to all schools, daycares, family support programs, adult education programs, etc.  These packages have the following:

  • Read for 15 poster, info sheet and fax back form.
  • Literacy Calendar (poster format)
  • How to Kits:  (feel free to photocopy and use in your community)
  • Family Math
  • Family Cooking
  • Prizes to celebrate NWT Literacy Week
  • “How did you celebrate NWT Literacy Week 2008?” fax back form
  • 2008/09 training calendar

Survey on the Education of Children and Youth with Disabilities
The Canadian Association for Community Living (CACL) is conducting a brief survey on the education of children and youth with disabilities.  An aim of the survey is to explore the experiences of young people with disabilities and their parents regarding the school system. People invited to take part in this survey are:

  • Parents of school-aged children and youth with disabilities.
  • Other people who exercise parental responsibilities for school-aged children and youth with disabilities.

All responses will be kept confidential. We are not looking for information that would allow us to personally identify you or your child. Respondents are not being tracked. The survey takes about 10 minutes to complete and can be found on-line at:

Health and Literacy Learning Institute
Bow Valley College has partnered with the Centre for Literacy in Quebec and the Canadian Council on Learning for the Health and Literacy Learning Institute on “Constructing Curriculum for Health Care Providers”  For more information go to

In the News

Boost literacy and help tackle alienation and stagnation
The Chronicle Herald Letters, By Sherry Campbell,  Sun. Sep 7
Tomorrow is International Literacy Day, when we take stock of how people worldwide are faring when it comes to their level of literacy. According to UNESCO, some 774 million adults worldwide lack minimum literacy skills; one in five adults is still not literate and two-thirds of them are women; 75 million children are out-of-school and many more attend irregularly or drop out.  In Canada, the literacy trend is troubling and getting worse. The Canadian Council on Learning’s recent report, Reading the Future, indicates nearly half of all adult Canadians (48 per cent) have low literacy skills and forecasts that number to grow by more than three million to 15 million by 2031. While you’re reading this article, one in six of your fellow Canadians cannot read the headline of today’s newspaper. That’s millions of Canadians who have trouble with everyday reading and writing requirements for life and work. Other studies, including those from the International Adult Literacy and Skills Survey (IALSS), the Vanier Institute of the Family and TD Bank Financial Group, have shown that low literacy skills are directly linked to poverty, high unemployment, lack of civic participation and poor health.  To read more go to

Reading and Fun
The Unesco Currier, Oliver Rey
More than 12 million people have difficulty with reading and writing in the United Kingdom. The BBC decided to come to their aid by launching the programme RaW (Reading and Writing), which has just received an Honourable Mention in this year’s UNESCO King Sejong Literacy Prize awards.  Launched in January 2007, the RaW programme provides, among other material, story books that parents can read to their children while at the same time improving their own literacy skills with puzzles and quizzes. During the summer in 2007 and 2008, RaW went on tour to areas in the United Kingdom where literacy is low. A circus-like environment was set up to incite families to participate in story-telling festivals. On hand were the characters Max and Lara from the children’s stories created by RaW.One of the festival’s high points was a storytelling performance from Sidney Sloane, children’s television presenter for the BBC. Telling stories to children is an art, on which the BBC has published some handy tips.  Besides the events it organizes - reading clubs, quiz groups in pubs, travelling circus with readings and shows - RaW also makes available free programmes for mobile phones and even free half-hour telephone consultations with a teacher.

Library targets youth with video games and pop culture

Special to The Globe and Mail, Shannon Moneo,  September 9, 2008
LANGFORD – Call it a McLibrary or Starbooks. In a bid to attract young adult and teen patrons, a compact library, with an adjoining coffee shop, video-game stations and a focus on popular culture, will open its doors this fall in a fast-growing Victoria suburb. "This branch is taking elements of leading-edge library design," said Don Butcher, executive director of the Canadian Library Association. "It's a neat approach." Due to open Oct. 17, the 2,000-square-foot library, in a new building just off Langford's main street, will use novel methods to reach patrons. Dubbed an "express" branch, it will focus on providing speedy in-and-out service. At the $370,000 Goudy branch, an inside doorway will open to a coffee shop so that patrons can buy a latte, saunter into the library and sip while they check out the pop fiction.  To read more go to

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Resources and Websites

Stories of the Week

This week, NALD launched eight stories written by adult learners from Alberta. Each of these people found their way to literacy programs along different life paths. To read these stories go to

To Succeed in Life, You Need Three Things: A Wishbone, A Backbone, A Funny bone:  A Collection of Student Articles

Toronto Centre for Community Learning & Development, 2008

To read these stories/articles go to

Creating Learning Partners:  A facilitator’s guide for training effective adult literacy tutors

Literacy Alberta

This manual follows the participatory approach to learning. As the facilitator using this approach, you are guiding your tutors from the known to the unknown. The activities were designed to draw on the experience and knowledge of tutors. Topics include: orientation, adults as learners, learning styles, planning for learning, about literacy, reading, writing, spelling, numeracy, learning disabilities, learner and tutor and tutoring basics. To download a copy of this resource go to

Creating Learning Partners:  HANDOUTS for the facilitator’s guide for training

Literacy Alberta

This resource goes with the above resource.  To download go to

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Lisa Campbell

Resource and Information Sharing 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.

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