Different kinds of literacy: Teaching financial literacy to teen moms

Florence Bank

Deciphering and then using financial information to make decisions often feels intimidating. Not only are the technical terms that banks and the government use on forms confusing, but making smart financial decisions also involves using numbers to calculate what the best option is. Financial literacy encompasses budgeting, understanding what different kinds of bank accounts are, and understanding what credit scores mean and how to get them. It is so important, but also so difficult, that the federal government set up the financial literacy website and tasked the Financial Literacy and Education Commission with developing a national strategy on financial education. Read More »


Different kinds of literacy: Teaching nutrition (and 10 healthy snack ideas)

Chef Bill

What’s more affordable – feeding your family McDonalds, or cooking a healthy meal? The teen mothers at the Athena Interactive Literacy Program, Reader to Reader’s annual family literacy training for teen moms, were shocked to discover that preparing a balanced meal actually costs less than eating fast food. Each day during this one-week program, Chef Bill Collins teaches participants how to cook healthy, inexpensive food through interactive cooking demonstrations. Read More »


Massachusetts children’s books to read this summer

If you are wondering what to put on your bookshelf this summer, you won’t go wrong with these titles all published in the past year by the Massachusetts authors and illustrators among us!

Early Read Alouds for Day and Night

the nonsense showThe Nonsense Show by Eric Carle 

The master is back with a wonderful picture book to read aloud and laugh along with for preschoolers through early elementary grades. This is an inventive and amusing look at the unexpected and goofy things around us, encouraging readers to embrace and revel in creativity and the amazing things that can happen when imagination is your guide. (Ages 3-6) Read More »


Different kinds of literacy: Teen moms learn skills through Athena program


Athena 2016 Cover

In everyday life, we talk about many different kinds of literacy. We sprinkle our language with terms like “emotional literacy” or “cultural literacy.” Educational innovators tout “digital literacy” as something that elementary schools must start teaching if students are to function in the 21st century. In short, these uses of “literacy” seem to reflect a definition of the term that is more than just reading and writing.

But what do these new notions of literacy even have in common with traditional notions of literacy?

Both new and traditional forms of literacy are skills of processing information to discern its meaning – whether it comes on a page, a web browser, or the smile on someone’s face. We then use that information to get to the website we want or to react appropriately to someone’s facial expression, for example. The different uses of the word “literacy” reflect the different formats in which the information comes, but they share a focus on being able to decode that information and use it to achieve some goal. Read More »


Mass Literacy Announces 2016 Mass Literacy Champions

L-R: Dennis Quinn, Yamaris Rivera, Pesha Black, Gerri Guyote, Sharon Shaloo and Jeantilus Gedeus. Boston Herald Staff Photo by Chitose Suzuki.

L-R: Dennis Quinn, Yamaris Rivera, Pesha Black, Gerri Guyote, Sharon Shaloo and Jeantilus Gedeus. Boston Herald Staff Photo by Chitose Suzuki.

We are thrilled to announce our 2016 Mass Literacy Champions award recipients. The program publicly recognizes and rewards Massachusetts educators who have shown exceptional commitment and results through their work in literacy education.

Meet the 2016 Mass Literacy Champions:

  • Pesha Black, Director of Holyoke Community College’s Ludlow Area Adult Learning Center and Springfield Adult Learning Center ESOL Program
  • Jeantilus Gedeus, ESOL Teacher at The Immigrant Learning Center in Malden
  • Gerri Guyote, Assistant Director of the Peabody Institute Library in Peabody
  • Dennis Quinn, Director of Mentoring Programs at Reader to Reader in Amherst
  • Yamaris Rivera, Family Access and Engagement Coordinator at the Lawrence School in Holyoke
  • Sharon Shaloo, Executive Director of the Massachusetts Center for the Book in Boston

Read More »