A.L.L. in Family Literacy - New Training from CLN

Posted:31 October 2017

Author: Tanis Harms, Community Learning Network

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Comments: 15

Recommendations: 1

Hot off the press!

Did you know CLN has developed and CALP-ified a brand new training? In this blog, I want to share some information about this training so you can determine if it is a good “fit” for you or another team member at your organization.

How did this training come about in the first place?


It all started with a stroll...

Once upon a lovely day in June 2016, Cheryl Lovstrom and I tracked many laps around the Edmonton CLN office during a lunch break, passionately conversing about what seemed to be a gap in understanding (and sometimes implementing) for some CALP staff and stakeholders in regards to understanding Family Literacy as an Adult Literacy & Learning strategy in our system.

We both knew that parents come to Family Literacy programs for a variety of reasons. As Family Literacy Coordinators and Facilitators, we want to ensure our programs are welcoming places for parents as learners – to build their confidence as their child’s first teacher and to enhance their own foundational skills and practices as the CALP Guidelines state.
Family Literacy is an adult literacy and learning strategy. We saw the need for a training that would highlight where practitioners are already embedding, or would like to learn how to intentionally embed, literacy skills development and literacy skills practises into their programs regardless of which models their programs were based on.

Shovel diggingNext, we got to work!

We got to work intentionally observing and listening to CALP practitioners, our fellow RSS and wider CLN staff team, as well as our Grant Managers about what areas were in need of discussion. Based on this research, we compiled a list of topics to be covered and came up with the following areas to focus on in the training.


Topics Covered

  • Defining a CALP-funded Family Literacy program
  • How do Family Literacy programs fit the Guidelines?
  • Building foundational literacy and learning skills in learners (literacy skills development and literacy skills practise activities)
  • Essential Skills & Family Literacy (Strategies for Embedding)
  • Applying the Strategies and Tools to your own programs

At the end of the training, participants will:

  • Understand how Family Literacy programs provide Adult Foundational Learning opportunities
  • Learn how to engage parents by using adult learning strategies in their Family Literacy programs

Cheryl and I were thrilled with the results and could not wait to share the easy, relevant tools with Family Literacy practitioners across the CALP system! We identified benefits of the training for a wide spectrum of CALP practitioners and stakeholders who are currently involved in, or considering involvement in, Family Literacy programs as an Adult Literacy and Learning strategy.


This workshop is primarily for Coordinators, Facilitators, and Administrators of CALP-funded Family Literacy programs.

DartboardSo did we accomplish our goal?...

Like all new products, we needed to pilot our plan in order to develop the most effective training for the CALP community. We conducted two pilots and gained valuable feedback from all of the participants – thank you to each one involved in these sessions!

Feedback from Pilot Participants:

  • Love the theory which moves to practical application and immediate implementation
  • It’s great seeing where literacy development and practise are already being done in programs and also how to be more intentional – what are quick changes/wins
  • This workshop should be required for all CALP Family Literacy providers as a supplement to any models training
  • This training connected Family Literacy to the CALP guidelines….increased my understanding and appreciation of Family Literacy with clear connections to adult learners and foundational learning
  • Everyone needs this training…this workshop provides CALP staff the knowledge and language to report to funders and promote their programs to partners
  • As someone without a Family Literacy background I found the discussion and focus on embedding foundational learning the most helpful. Being able to identify the skills and methods of addressing foundational learning needs in an intentional way was very helpful

Red CarpetNow Premiering...

A new training hot off the press and accessible to you!

Adult Literacy & Learning in Family Literacy (A.L.L in Family Literacy)

This training is now available to request in all 5 CALP Regions, or as an online participant with 5 weekly 1.5 hr sessions. Contact your RSS for more details.

Do you have more questions about this training?

Please comment below - we would be more than happy to answer them!

Tanis Harms
Regional Support Staff
Northern Alberta


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