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.

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Join the Wednesday Night Readers Book Club in 2014

This is the reading schedule for Project Read's learner & tutor book club for the first half of 2014. Tutor-learner teams are encouraged to pick up FREE books and audio books (yours to keep). All we ask is that learners taking these materials make plans to join the lively and rewarding discussions held on the last Wednesday of each month at 6:00 PM. We make the unabridged audio books available so that learners at any reading level can take part in these book discussions.  Books also come with comprehension/discussion questions for tutor-learner teams to use during their tutoring sessions.

The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison (books/audio available on January 29 for meeting on February 26)
Pecola Breedlove, a young black girl, prays every day for beauty. Mocked by other children for the dark skin, curly hair, and brown eyes that set her apart, she yearns for normalcy, for the blond hair and blue eyes that she believes will allow her to finally fit in. Yet as her dream grows more fervent, her life slowly starts to disintegrate in the face of adversity and strife. A powerful examination of our obsession with beauty and conformity, Toni Morrison’s virtuosic first novel asks powerful questions about race, class, and gender with the subtlety and grace that have always characterized her writing. (206 pages)

Six Degrees of Separation by John Guare (books/audio available on February 26 for meeting on March 26)  
This play explores the premise that everyone in the world is connected to everyone else in the world by a chain of no more than six acquaintances, thus, "six degrees of separation".  The plot of the play was inspired by the real-life story of David Hampton, a con man who managed to convince a number of people in the 1980s that he was the son of actor Sidney Poitier.  After the play became a dramatic and financial success, Hampton was tried and acquitted for harassment of the plays author. Apparently he believed that he was due a share of the play’s profits that he ultimately never received. (72 pages)


Sarah’s Key by Tatiana de Rosnay (book/audio available on March 26 for meeting on April 30)
Sarah's Key follows the story of Julia Jarmond, an American journalist living in France, who is assigned to complete an article on the Vel' d'Hiv' roundup in France as well as the story of Sarah, a young girl, who experienced the roundup first hand. The novel explores France's role in World War II and shines light on an otherwise scarcely remembered tragedy of the Holocaust. While most novels about the Holocaust delve into its horrors, Sarah's Key delves into the effects of the Holocaust that are still felt decades later by the French.


The Girl Who Fell from the Sky by Heidi W. Durrow (books/audio available on April 30 for meeting  on May 28)
Rachel, the daughter of a Danish mother and a black G.I., becomes the sole survivor of a family tragedy after a fateful morning on their Chicago rooftop. Forced to move to a new city, with her strict African American grandmother as her guardian, Rachel is thrust for the first time into a mostly black community, where her light brown skin, blue eyes, and beauty bring a constant stream of attention her way. It’s there, as she grows up and tries to swallow her grief, that she comes to understand how the mystery and tragedy of her mother might be connected to her own uncertain identity. This searing and heart-wrenching portrait of a young biracial girl dealing with society’s ideas of race and class is the winner of the Bellwether Prize for best fiction manuscript addressing issues of social justice. (272 pages)


Balzac and the Little Chinese Princess by Dai Sijie (books/audio available on May 28 for meeting on June 25)
This story follows the lives of two teens, Luo and his best friend (the unnamed narrator of the novel), who have been sent to a small Chinese village for "re-education" during Mao's Cultural Revolution. Sons of doctors and dentists, their days are now spent moving buckets of excrement up the mountainside and mining coal. But the boys receive a bit of a reprieve when the villagers discover their talents as storytellers; they are sent on monthly trips to town watch movies and relate the details on their return. It is here that they encounter the little seamstress of the title, whom Luo falls for instantly. When, through a series of comic and clever tricks and favors, the boys acquire a suitcase full of forbidden Western literature, Luo 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. (197 pages)

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Join Us for a Tutor Roundtable in 2014

Project Read's monthly Tutor Roundtable meetings are an opportunity for volunteers to engage in an open and rewarding discussion with other tutors and Project Read staff. At these informal meetings, you'll be able to share your success stories and offer encouragement to your fellow tutors. You will also pick-up some fresh instructional strategies to enhance your tutoring skills. And of course, we will provide some tasty pizza and drinks to support the conversation. 

Here are upcoming Tutor Roundtable dates for the first few months of 2014. These meetings are held in the Conference Room of the Project Read office at the Main Library and they usually last about one hour.

 
Tuesday, January 7, 6:00 PM

Saturday, February 1, 1:00 PM

Tuesday, March 4, 6:00 PM

Saturday, April 5, 1:00 PM

Tuesday, May 6, 6:00 PM

Saturday, June 7, 1:00 PM


Thursday, October 24, 2013

Health Care Workshop for Learners: November 12

What does Health Care Reform
 mean for you?


Going into effect in January, 2014, Covered California is the marketplace where Californians will be able to purchase health insurance coverage under the federally-mandated Affordable Care Act.

 


Join a representative from San Francisco Health Plan to discuss your health care options available through Covered California, Medi-Cal, and Healthy San Francisco.

Tuesday, November 12
6:00 PM
Project Read Conference Room
 
Please call 415-557-4388 if you plan to attend.
 

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

 

 
Tuesday, December 10, 2013
5:30 - 7:30 p.m.
San Francisco Main Library
100 Larkin Street - Skylight Gallery (6th Floor)
 
This 30th Anniversary Celebration will include:
* Project Read tutor and learner hosts * Special guest speakers * Complimentary food and beverages * A "Share Your Project Read Memories" video booth
 
Please call 415-557-4388 if you plan to attend.
 
 


Tuesday, September 17, 2013

In-Service workshop for Project Read Tutors - Oct. 23



Instructional Resources Tune-Up
for Tutors
An in-service workshop presented by Brian Castagne & Randy Weaver

Here’s your chance to review Project Read’s valuable resources for teaching Spelling, Comprehension, Writing, and Phonics. Brian and Randy will explore the wealth of materials—both computer-based and print—which are available to support your tutoring sessions. We’ll also provide custom crafted handouts galore!
  
Wednesday, October 23
6:00—7:3O p.m.
Location: Main Library, Project Read Conference Room & Computer Lab

Please call (415) 557-4388 if you plan to attend.
 

Thursday, August 01, 2013

Workshop for Learners, Tutors & Families - August 14



Digital Device Drop-in
 Presented by Brian Castagne & Susan Fink

                                                                
Join Brian, Susan, and some tech-savvy teens to learn
 some helpful tips for making the most of your iPhone,
 cell phone, tablet, laptop or other digital device.
 
  If you bring it in, we’ll do our best to figure it out.

    Wednesday, August 14
 6:00 to 7:00 pm

Main Library, Project Read Conference Room and Computer Lab
 
Some tasty snacks wil be served.
                                                   
 

Monday, June 17, 2013

Join the Project Read Wednesday Night Readers Book Club

 
This is the reading schedule for Project Read's learner & tutor book club for the second half of 2013. Tutor-learner teams are encouraged to pick up FREE books and audio books (yours to keep). All we ask is that learners taking these materials make plans to join the lively and rewarding discussions held on the last Wednesday of each month at 6:00 PM. We make the unabridged audio books available so that learners at any reading level can take part in these book discussions.

The Mighty Miss Malone by Christopher Paul Curtis (books & audio available June 26, discussed on July 31)
Deza is the smartest girl in her class in Gary, Indiana, singled out by teachers for a special path in life. But it's 1936 and the Great Depression hits Gary hard, and there are no jobs for black men. When her beloved father leaves to find work, Deza, Mother, and her older brother, Jimmie, go in search of him, and end up in a Hooverville outside Flint, Michigan. Jimmie's beautiful voice inspires him to leave the camp to be a performer, while Deza and Mother find a new home, and cling to the hope that they will find Father. The twists and turns of their story reveal the devastation of the Depression and prove that Deza truly is the Mighty Miss Malone. (297 pages)


Flight by Sherman Alexie (books & audio available July 31, discussed on August 28)
This is a timely story of a troubled foster teenager — a boy who is not a “legal” Indian because he was never claimed by his father — who learns the true meaning of terror. About to commit a devastating act, the young man finds himself shot back through time on a shocking sojourn through moments of violence in American history. He resurfaces in the form of an FBI agent during the civil rights era, inhabits the body of an Indian child during the battle at Little Big Horn, and then rides with an Indian tracker in the 19th Century before materializing as an airline pilot jetting through the skies today. When finally, blessedly, our young warrior comes to rest again in his own contemporary body, he is mightily transformed by all he’s seen. (181 pages)


The Fault in Our Stars by John Green (books & audio available August 28, discussed on September 25)
In The Fault in Our Stars, John Green has created a soulful novel that tackles big subjects--life, death, love--with the perfect blend of levity and heart-swelling emotion. Hazel is sixteen, with terminal cancer, when she meets Augustus at her kids-with-cancer support group. The two are kindred spirits, sharing an irreverent sense of humor and immense charm, and watching them fall in love even as they face universal questions of the human condition--How will I be remembered? Does my life, and will my death, have meaning?--has a raw honesty that is deeply moving. (313 pages)


Dandelion Wine by Ray Bradbury (books & audio available on September 25, discussed on October 30)
Twelve-year-old Douglas Spaulding knows Green Town, Illinois, is as vast and deep as the whole wide world that lies beyond the city limits. It is a pair of brand-new tennis shoes, the first harvest of dandelions for Grandfather's renowned intoxicant, the distant clang of the trolley's bell on a hazy afternoon. It is yesteryear and tomorrow blended into an unforgettable always. But as young Douglas is about to discover, summer can be more than the repetition of established rituals whose mystical power holds time at bay. It can be a best friend moving away, a human time machine that can transport you back to the Civil War, or a sideshow automaton able to glimpse the bittersweet future. (267 pages)


A Christmas Blizzard by Garrison Keillor (books & audio available on October 30, discussed on Dec. 4)Snow is falling all across the Midwest as James Sparrow, a country- bumpkin-turned-energy-drink-tycoon, and his wife awaken in their sky- rise apartment overlooking Chicago. Even down with the stomach bug, Mrs. Sparrow yearns to see The Nutcracker while James yearns only to escape-the faux-cheer, the bitter cold, the whole Christmas season. An urgent phone call from his hometown of Looseleaf, North Dakota, sends James into the midst of his lunatic relatives and a historic blizzard. (181 pages)

My Beloved World by Sonia Sotomayor (books & audio available on Dec. 4, discussed on January 29, 2014)
The story of a precarious childhood, with an alcoholic father and a devoted but overburdened mother, and of the refuge a little girl took from the turmoil at home with her passionately spirited paternal grandmother. With only television characters for her role models, and little understanding of what was involved, she was determined to become a lawyer, a dream that would sustain her on an unlikely course, from valedictorian of her high school class to the highest honors at Princeton, Yale Law School, the New York County District Attorney’s office, appointment to the Federal District Court before the age of forty, and ultimately her appointment to the U.S. Supreme Court. (302 pages)

Project Read Tutors: Join Us for an Upcoming Tutor Roundtable Meeting

 
Project Read's monthly Tutor Roundtable meetings are an opportunity for volunteers to engage in an open and rewarding discussion with other tutors and Project Read staff. At these informal meetings, you'll be able to share your success stories and offer encouragement to your fellow tutors. You will also pick-up some fresh instructional strategies to enhance your tutoring skills. And of course, we will provide some tasty pizza and drinks to support the conversation. 

Here are upcoming Tutor Roundtable dates for the last few months of 2013. These meetings are held in the Conference Room of the Project Read office at the Main Library.


  • Tuesday, July 2 - 6:00 PM
  • Saturday, August 3 - 1:00 PM
  • Tuesday, September 3 - 6:00 PM
  • Saturday, October 5 - 1:00 PM
  • Tuesday, November 5 - 6:00 PM

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Newspaper Classes for Learners
Thursday Afternoons - 2:00 to 4:00 PM
July 11, 18, 25 and August 1
Project Read Conference & Computer Lab
 
Join us for as many of these classes as you like!
 
At these classes, learners will:
  • Read and discuss current newspaper articles.
  • Learn new words found in the articles.
  • Improve your understanding of what you read.
  • Practice writing your thoughts and ideas using the dictionary and the computer.
 
Presented by Vicki Weisman
of the Adult Learning and Tutorial Center, City College of San Francisco


Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Learner & Tutor Celebration: June 11, 2013

Please Save this Date:



for Project Read's Annual
Learner & Tutor Celebration
Tuesday, June 11, 2013 - 6:00pm

Join your fellow Project Read tutors, learners and staff for an exciting evening of sharing and celebration featuring:
  • Volunteer Service Awards
  • Learners sharing their thanks and achievements
  • Excellent catered food courtesy of Pluto's
  • And much, much more!

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Workshop for Learners & Tutors, April 20

Abacus for the Rest of Us



Join Project Read tutor Hideka of SuperMath (www.supermath.com)
 to explore modern uses of this ancient technology.


Saturday, April 20

11:00am to 12:00pm
Project Read Conference Room

Please call (415) 557- 4388 as soon as you decide to attend.

Monday, March 25, 2013

Workshop for Adult Learners


Financial Health
Join a Certified Consumer Credit and Housing Counselor
from Consumer Credit Counseling Service of SF to discuss tips for:

  • Budgeting,
  • Credit Repair,
  • Working with Creditors,
  • and much, much more!

Tuesday, April 30
5:30 PM
Project Read Conference Room

Space is limited so please call
(415) 557- 4388 as soon as you decide to attend.



Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Tutor In-Service Workshop - February 19



Using Poetry to Enrich Basic Literacy Instruction
Presented by Randy Weaver — Project Read Manager

Join us for this fun and interactive workshop where you will discover how poetry can be used to teach basic skills while adding variety and excitement to your tutoring sessions.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013
6:00 — 7:30 pm
Main Library—Latino-Hispanic Meeting Room, Lower Level

Please call (415) 557- 4388 if you plan to attend.