Welcome to Write Away the brand new
writing forum for Project Read learners!

We've redesigned our blog so that adult learners working at Project Read can share what they have written with other learners, tutors, and the public. There are a few simple guidelines to be aware of.
  1. This is a moderated site, so submissions and comments will first be reviewed before being approved and published.
  2. Adult learners submitting their writing have the option of using their first name (only) or using "anonymous" for authorship.
  3. We wish to honor the writing efforts of the adult learner/authors, so no major copy editing will be applied, but we may suggest minor corrections in consultation with the author.
  4. Only active Project Read learners are eligible to submit their writing to the Write Away blog and there are two ways of doing this: send submissions via email to projectread@sfpl.org, or stop by the office with a hard copy of your writing.
  5. The views and opinions expressed on this web site are solely those of the original authors and contributors. These views and opinions do not represent those of the San Francisco Public Library and/or the City and County of San Francisco.

Friday, January 27, 2012

Tutor-Learner Teams are Invited to Join the Wednesday Night Readers Book Club


Here is the schedule of books being read and discussed by Project Read's Wednesday Night Readers book club over the next few months. Tutor-learner teams are encouraged to pick up these FREE books and audio books and then make plans to attend one of these exciting and rewarding discussions. We make unabridged audio books available so that learners at any reading level can participate in the discussion.  The discussions are lively, informative, and take place in a supportive environment that makes everyone feel comfortable and welcome. 

Many tutor-learner teams use the monthly book club selections as part of their regular lesson plans, and since books are provided FREE to both tutors and learners, you know the materials will always be available.  Also, most of the fiction selections come with comprehension questions which can be used in your sessions.  All we ask is that the learner (and tutor, if possible) attend the book discussion on the last Wednesday of each month at 6:00 PM. 


Finding Oprah’s Roots: Finding Your Own by Henry Louis Gates, Jr. (Discussed at the February 29 meeting, books & audio available January 25)
    Gates chronicles the fascinating process of uncovering Oprah's family history. He was challenged by the same obstacles that all African Americans face in finding documentation during and after slavery. He recalls the process of talking to Oprah's relatives and the arduous task of finding a paper trail. Gates also suggests strategies for tracing your own family’s roots beginning with the gathering oral histories from living relatives. (192 pages)

Lost in Yonkers, a Play by Neil Simon (Discussed at the March 28 meeting, books & audio available February 29)
    This is an insightful drama about one woman's drive and its emotional toll on her and her family. Grandma Kurnitz has endured many crises, ranging from a harsh childhood in Germany to being a young widow with six children in a foreign country. From her life she learned to be strong, hard, and cold, and this is the lesson she tries to instill in her four remaining children. While her two teenage grandsons are in her care, the three learn the importance of being loved and loving, and the difference between living and surviving. (114 pages)

Milkweed by Jerry Spinelli (Discussed at the April 25 meeting, books & audio available March 28)
    In Warsaw in 1939, a boy wanders the streets and survives by stealing what food he can. Reading this unusual, fresh view of the Holocaust as seen through the eyes of a child who struggles to understand the world around him is like viewing a poignant collage of the boy’s impressions. This historical novel can be appreciated both by readers with previous knowledge of the Holocaust and by those who share the child’s innocence and will discover the horrors of this period in history along with him. (208 pages)

Balzac and the Little Chinese Seamstress by Dai Sijie (Discussed at the May 30 meeting, books & audio available April 25)
    This beautifully presented novella tracks the lives of two teens, childhood friends who have been sent to a small Chinese village for "re-education" during Mao's Cultural Revolution. But the boys receive a bit of a reprieve when the villagers discover their talents as storytellers; they are sent on monthly treks to town. Through a series of comic and clever tricks and favors, the boys acquire a suitcase full of forbidden Western literature. One of the boys decides to "re-educate" the ignorant girl whom he hopes will become his intellectual match. That a bit of Balzac can have an aphrodisiac effect is a happy bonus. Ultimately, the book is a simple, lovely telling of a classic boy-meets-girl scenario with a folktale's smart, surprising bite at the finish. (184 pages)

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Welcome to Susan Fink - Project Read's New Tutor-Learner Coordinator


We are extremely happy to announce that as of January 9, Susan Fink has assumed the duties of Tutor-Learner Coordinator at Project Read.  Susan has been a member of the Project Read family for over 15 years. She began as a one-to-one tutor, and then took on the additional responsibilities of a Tutor Contact/Mentor Tutor.  For the past few years, she has also offered a drop-in math class every Thursday evening, providing learners (and even some tutors) with expert instruction in all things math-related.

In her new position, Susan will be responsible for assessing in-coming learners, matching tutor-learner teams, collecting follow-up Roles and Goals surveys, as well as other important program functions. 

So the next time you are in the Project Read office, stop by and meet the newest member of our team.