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The Altrusa Club of Warsaw labeled books for Kosciusko Literacy Services’ Read to Grow Children's Book Club program.  The women labeled nearly 3000 books.  The Read to Grow Children's Book Club provides one book a month to each preschool child who is living below the 150% of the poverty level.  Current enrollment is over 600 children.  By placing the books in the home, Kosciusko Literacy Services addresses one of the main reasons children have low skills when entering school—the lack of reading material in the home.  The parents sign an agreement to read regularly to their child.  Reading to children at an early age helps the child’s brain to develop language and reading skills. 

 

Kosciusko Literacy Services’ Read to Grow Children's Book Club is an on-going program addressing the lack of basic skills low-income children have when entering the school system.  The Read to Grow Children's Book Club provides one book a month to each registered, preschool child who is living at or below the 150% of the poverty level.  This program helps the child have the necessary skills to be ready for school and to continue learning.  The program is very tangible—the books belong to the child and are in the child’s home.  In addition to the child’s brain being stimulated and the books being available on a daily basis, an indirect outcome of this program is that the bond between parent and child is enhanced during the quality interaction of reading stories.  Stronger families and improved educational capacity of the child will build stronger and more productive communities.  This program has proven, positive results in Kosciusko County.

Congratulations to The Walk-n-Wander Essay Contest Winners.  Mikayla Mimnaugh won the Elementary Category and Nate Hertlein won the Adult Category.  Read all the entries below.

Mikayla Mimnaugh won the Walk-n-Wander Essay Contest for Elementary Students.  Mikayla is a fourth grade student at Harrison Elementary.  She won a set of five books and a $50 prize.  Shown with Mikayla is her younger brother and Kosciusko Literacy Services Executive Director Cindy Cates.  Congratulations, Mikayla! 

Mikayla Mimnaugh and her very proud family.
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Read Elementary Winner "My Trip" by Mikayla Mimnaugh

Read Adult Winner "All In" by Nate Hertlein

Read "Today's Moments" by Melinda Craig

Read "Contact" by Kay Creamer

Read "A Walking Photograph" by Ashley Hawkins

Read "Empire State" by Karen Justice

Read "Lunchtime Nap" by Kelly Mager

Read "The Visit" by Ken Meyer

Read "The Judge" by Jeannie Rhodes

Sir Arthur Conan Doyle Investigated at the 2014 Author Dinner

 

Dr. Elliot Engel returns to speak on “Detecting Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.”  during the 2014 Author Dinner on Thursday, November 6, in the Taharaa Room of Noa Noa Restaurant. 

The creator of Sherlock Holmes led a fascinating life which rivals the suspense and surprises found in his detective fiction.  Doyle's writings created icons and achieved milestones in the crime fiction genre.

With his witty and insightful speaking style, Dr. Engel is the quintessential teacher as he combines education and entertainment.  Engel is the educator everyone wishes to have leading the path to learning. 

The Author Dinner benefits literacy programming in Kosciusko County.  Underwriting sponsors are needed to make the event a successful fundraiser.  The underwriting or sponsoring levels are

Sherlock Holmes Level for $5000 and above,

Dr. Watson Level for $2500,

The Baker Street Level for $1500, and the

Elementary Level for $1000. 

Sponsors of the event receive tickets to the Author dinner and will be featured on the invitations and programs.  Individual tickets are $100 of which $65 is tax deductible.

 

Complete a Home Energy Assessment and Energizing Indiana will donate $25 to Kosciusko Literacy Services! 
What is included in an Energizing Indiana home energy assessment?
Energizing Indiana's energy advisors will not only show you ways to save energy by making your home more efficient; they'll even install an energy savings kit to help you start saving energy right away. 
Your energy advisor will install the following measure for you:
  • Efficient CFLs replacing traditional incandescent light bulbs
  • Energy efficient faucet aerators
  • Energy efficient showerhead(s)
  • Water heater pipe insulation 
Once your home's energy assessment is complete, you will receive a comprehensive report detailing what can be done to start saving energy and make your home more comfortable.Energizing Indiana programs are funded by utility rates and there are no separate fees to participate.
What does Kosciusko Literacy Services receive?
For every supporter who completes a home energy assessment, Energizing Indiana will donate $25 to our organization.
Forward this message to family and friends, encouraging them to participate and raise funds for our organization too.

Click Here to Learn More about the New High School Equivalency Exam

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Read John Steinbeck's Tragic Tale of the American Dream

Plant the Seed- READ! Community Book Read

  Question:  “What if everyone in Kosciusko County read the same book at the same time?”  Answer:  Members of the community would find new friends and neighbors with whom to share a good book and stimulating discussion.The goals of Plant the Seed—Read! are to : 
  This year 400 copies of Of Mice and Men are provided to residents of Kosciusko County in yellow bins placed at convenient locations in towns throughout the county.  Residents were asked to take a copy of the book, read it, pass it on to a friend, or return it to a bin, and to discuss the book and the 40 Developmental Assets with friends and discussion groups.
This year the community book read is sponsored by:
The Kosciusko County Community Foundation
and
The Dr. Dane and Mary Louise Miller Foundation

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Kosciusko Literacy Services presents the Author Dinner and a Trip for Two to London England. The 2013 Author Dinner will be held on Tuesday, October 29th, in the Taharaa Room of Noa Noa Restaurant.  Dr. Elliot Engel will be speaking on Queen Victoria and the Victorian Novel.  Dr. Engel explores the fascinating background on Queen Victoria and the literature, which evolved from this period in English history.

Kosciusko Literacy Services will be auctioning two trips for two.  First, people may bid on a trip for two to "The Best of The West" Literary Conference with Dr. Elliot Engel from February 12 to 16, 2014.  Join Elliot in Scottsdale, Arizona and discover and celebrate some of the country’s most beloved western writers.  Details are available at http://www.authorsink.com/the-best-of-the-west-literary-conference-by-dr-elliot-engel/.  The minimum bid is $3,000.

In addition, Kosciusko Literacy Services is offering a London Marriott or Renaissance Hotel Seven-Night Stay with Airfare for Two with a suggested retail value of $13,520. 

The minimum accepted bid is $7,200. 

This Experience Includes:
  • 7-night stay in a standard guest room at your choice of select Marriott or Renaissance hotel, four- and five-star properties, in London,
  • Daily breakfast for two,
  • Round-trip coach class airfare for two from the contiguous U.S. or Canada to London, England, and
  • Complimentary booking.
Sealed bids above the minimum bid will be accepted through November 15.  See details at http://www.kosciuskoliteracyservices.org/sitebuildercontent/sitebuilderfiles/LondonTripDetails.pdf
The auction items and Author Dinner benefits literacy programming in Kosciusko County.  Underwriting sponsors are needed to make the event a successful fundraiser.  Sponsors of the event will be featured on the programs.  Donors contributing $5,000 may have their names or corporate logos included in newsletters reaching over 900 individuals and businesses each quarter. 

Individual tickets for the dinner are $100.00 of which $65.00 is tax deductible as allowed by law.  Tickets must be purchased in advance and will be held at the door.  For tickets or for information on sponsoring the event, call 574-267-5380.   

The current event sponsors are R.R. Donnelley & Sons, the Grossnickle Family Foundation, Lake City Bank, Maple Leaf Farms, Medtronic Spinal & Biologics, and the Dr. Dane and Mary Louise Miller Foundation.  Reading sponsors are Biomet, Inc., The Papers, Inc., and Lois Niemier & Learning Solutions.

Click here to view London Trip Details and Restrictions

KLS Receives TCU Foundation Grant
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Shown: KLS Board Member Cathy Mullet, Director Cindy Cates, and Teachers Credit Union's Karen Mayer

The TCU Foundation recently granted Kosciusko Literacy Services (KLS) $2,000 to purchase books for preschool children enrolled in Read to Grow Children's Book Club.  The Book Club addresses the lack of basic skills low-income children have when entering the school system.  The Read to Grow Children's Book Club provides one book a month to each enrolled child under five years old who is living below 150% of the poverty level.  Currently, 525 children are enrolled.  By placing the books in the home, KLS addresses one of the main reasons children have low skills when entering kindergarten—the lack of reading material in the home.  The parents sign an agreement to read regularly to their child.  Because reading to a child at an early age helps the child’s brain to develop language and reading skills, this program helps the child have the necessary skills to be ready for school and to continue learning.  The TCU Foundation supports the Credit Union Vision of being a positive force in the communities served by TCU.  TCU consistently practices the Credit Union Philosophy of "People Helping People" and the TCU Foundation gives the Credit Union another opportunity to further its commitment to use resources in a manner to enhance the betterment of the communities in which our members live and work.

Will Cather’s My Ántonia Selected to be Plant the Seed, Read! Community Book Read—Free Digital Downloads are Available

 The Community Book Read is for residents of Kosciusko County from mid-December through March 2013.  Free copies of My Ántonia by Willa Cather are in bright yellow bins throughout the county. Please take, read, and enjoy the book.  Return the book to the bin so someone else may read the book. The books will be available through March.

A limited number of books are available.  Therefore, readers are encouraged to download free copies of the book to an e-reader or a computer.  Amazon.com has free downloads.  Readers may also read the entire book online at http://www.willacather.org

For many reasons, Willa Cather’s My Ántonia was chosen as the title for the Plant the Seed, Read! Community Book Read.  Though Kosciusko Literacy Services did not receive funding from the National Endowment for the Arts, My Ántonia, is a Big Read selection and Readers’ and Teachers’ Guides are available online at www.neabigread.org. 

In addition to the books available in the Yellow Bins in Kosciusko County, Amazon.com has free digital downloads of the book.  Readers may use Kindle or the free Cloud Reader.  The book may also be read online at www.online-literature.com/willa-cather/my-antonia/ or at www.willacather.org/about-willa-cather/online-texts. 

Lastly, My Ántonia continues the themes of Midwestern problems identified in last year’s book read, Hollowing Out the Middle – The Rural Brain Drain and What It Means for America.  My Ántonia has themes of immigration, poverty, and the difficulties of rural life.  Immigrants settle on the prairie frontier.  Young women move to cities to earn a living.  Young men, who went to college, never return to the farm because of opportunities in larger cities.

Book Discussions are scheduled on: Wednesday, January 30, 2013 at 6:00 p.m. at the Warsaw Community Public Library .Tuesday, February 19, 2013 at 5:30 p.m. at the Kosciusko Literacy Services office located in Room 3 of Gateway Education Center (the old Madison Elementary School).  Light refreshments will be served.Wednesday, March 13, 2013 at 6:30 p.m. at the Syracuse Public Library.

Dr. Engel
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The History and Mystery of Wine

Author Dinner—October 18th

  The 2012 Author Dinner will be held on Thursday, October 18th, in the Taharaa Room of Noa Noa Restaurant.  Dr. Elliot Engel will be speaking on The History and Mystery of Wine.Dr. Engel traces the phenomenal ancient origins of wine and continues the story through the wide and often wild popularity of wine today.  Special attention is given to the competing drinks which almost destroyed wine's popularity in the 17th-century and to the unexpected consequences of the Muslim prohibition of all spirits beginning in 700 A.D. With his witty and insightful speaking style, Dr. Engel is the quintessential teacher as he combines education and entertainment.  Engel is the educator everyone wishes to have leading the path to learning.  The Author Dinner benefits literacy programming in Kosciusko County.  Underwriting sponsors are needed to make the event a successful fundraiser.  Sponsors of the event will be featured on the invitations and programs.  Donors contributing $5,000.00 may have their names or corporate logos included in newsletters reaching over 900 individuals and businesses each quarter.  Individual tickets are $85.00 of which $60.00 is tax deductible as allowed by law.  Tickets must be purchased in advance.  For tickets or for information on sponsoring the event, call 574-267-5380.   

 

Kosciusko Literacy Services Offering Adult Literacy ClassesLiteracy Classes focusing on adults wanting to improve reading skills will begin in September.  The classes will meet from 9:00 – 11:00 am on Tuesdays and Thursdays beginning September 11th at Gateway Education Center, 201 North Union Street in Warsaw.  The class is designed for adults reading below an eighth grade level.  Volunteers are needed to provide an additional hour of one-on-one help.  One objective is to improve reading skills to a minimum of the eighth grade level so students may enter GED classes.  Adults wanting to enroll in the Literacy Class may call 574-267-5380 to register. 

A person with low-literacy skills lives in a narrowed world limiting his or her full participation as an engaged citizen.  Increasing literacy levels is one of the best ways a society can improve its future.  Literacy improves not only employable skills, but makes stronger families, communities, and economies.  One in eleven adults in Kosciusko County read below the basic skill level, and these poor reading skills are often embarrassing for the adult.  Since adults needing help may be reluctant to receive assistance, encouragement from friends and family is important. 

Mrs. Sue Boyle, a retired reading specialist teacher, will be teaching the literacy class.  Sue taught a six-week literacy class for Kosciusko Literacy Services in 2009.  Phonics and word decoding skills will be a key component in the classes.  Kosciusko Literacy Services and the Warsaw Adult Education program, now under the Department of Workforce Development, have collaborated since 1993 to provide instruction to adults learning to read, earning a GED, or learning English as a new language.  Funding from Workforce Development places a priority on adults, reading above a sixth grade level, who can make measurable gains within a year.  Kosciusko Literacy Services is seeking to restore service to lower literacy adults by providing this literacy class in addition to volunteer tutors. 

Kosciusko Literacy Services received a $12,000 grant from the Dollar General Literacy Foundation to administer adult literacy classes and expand the adult tutoring program at Kosciusko Literacy Services in collaboration with Warsaw Adult Education.

Become a volunteer tutor.  Join KLS and Warsaw Adult Education for Tutor Training Sessions.

Click here to view Tutor Training Flyer

Marcia Randolph, Henry Reyes, and Cindy Cates
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Henry Reyes Manager of the Dollar General Store located in the Lakes Village Shopping Center in Warsaw takes time to congratulate Kosciusko Literacy Services on a recent grant from the Dollar General Literacy Foundation.  Kosciusko Literacy Services is represented by Executive Director Cindy Cates (right) and Board Member Marcia Randolph (left).  Covering two years, the $12,000 grant provides funding for teaching literacy classes for adults wishing to improve their reading skills.  Beginning in September, the classes will meet twice a week for two hours.  Volunteers are needed to provide an additional hour of one-on-one help.  Kosciusko Literacy Services expresses appreciation to the Dollar General Literacy Foundation and the Dollar General Stores.  Dollar General Stores in Kosciusko County are located in Syracuse, North Webster, Milford, Pierceton, Mentone, and Warsaw.

KOSCIUSKO LITERACY SERVICES RECEIVES $12,000 GRANT FROM THE DOLLAR GENERAL LITERACY FOUNDATION


Warsaw, Indiana May 17 – Kosciusko Literacy Services received a $12,000 grant from the Dollar General Literacy Foundation.  The grant provides funding to administer adult literacy classes and expand the adult tutoring program at Kosciusko Literacy Services in collaboration with Warsaw Adult Education at Gateway Education Center.

Kosciusko Literacy Services and the Warsaw Adult Education program, now under the Department of Workforce Development, have collaborated since 1993 to provide instruction to adults learning to read, earning a GED, or learning English as a new language.  Funding from Workforce Development places a priority on adults, reading above a sixth grade level, who can make measurable gains within a year.  Kosciusko Literacy Services is seeking to restore service to lower literacy adults by providing literacy classes in addition to volunteer tutors.  Beginning in September, the classes will meet twice a week for two hours.  Volunteers are needed to provide an additional hour of one-on-one help.  The objective is to improve reading skills to a minimum of the eighth grade level so that the student may enter GED classes.

The Dollar General Literacy Foundation awards grants to organizations in communities served by Dollar General. The literacy grants support nonprofit organizations that provide literacy services such as adult basic education, GED preparation, English language acquisition or programs for youth who struggle with reading.   For more information on the Dollar General Literacy Foundation and a complete list of grant recipients, visit www.dgliteracy.org. 

About Kosciusko Literacy Services
Kosciusko Literacy Services believes that the ability to read, write, and speak English is the key to increased educational levels, economic stability, overall health and safety, and a sense of community for all residents of our county.  The mission of the Kosciusko Literacy Services is to increase the literacy levels of all citizens of our community by implementing innovative and comprehensive programs using a collaborative effort from the community; increasing public awareness of literacy issues facing adults, children, and families; and providing trained volunteer tutors for the adult students.  By collaborating with other educational initiatives, Kosciusko Literacy Services envisions making Kosciusko County the Education Capital of Indiana.  For more information, visit www.kosciuskoliteracyservices.org.

About the Dollar General Literacy Foundation
The Dollar General Literacy Foundation is proud to support initiatives that help others improve their lives through literacy and education.  Since 1993, the Foundation has awarded more than $71.2 million in grants to nonprofit organizations, helping more than 4.1 million individuals take their first steps toward literacy, a general education diploma or English proficiency.  To learn more about the Dollar General Literacy Foundation, visit www.dgliteracy.org.

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Tara and daughter Alanna look at Alanna’s book recently at the Kosciusko Literacy Services office. Alanna receives a new book each month, and Tara reads regularly to her. Children who experience regular read aloud time during the preschool years, perform better once in school.

During the preschool years, the child’s brain is developing language and literacy skills. The synapses of the brain become stronger each time a child uses one of the five senses. Reading aloud to a child is proven to be one of the best ways to develop the language portion of the child’s brain. At age three, Alanna, can recite the alphabet and has a love of books.

Dr. Seuss Reading Celebration was March 2nd, at the Wawasee Elementary Schools.  Each classroom received six new books and hosted a guest reader.  This Celebration is made possible by a generous grant from the Shoop Sports & Youth Foundation.  The goal is to inspire children to read for pleasure as well as knowledge.

Click Here to View Activities for Hollowing Out the Middle

Monday, August 29, 2011

September is National Literacy Month
Celebrating National Literacy Month in September emphasizes the importance of literacy’s role in achieving one’s dreams.   The Workforce Investment Act of 1998 defines literacy as “an individual's ability to read, write, speak in English, compute and solve problems at levels of proficiency necessary to function on the job, in the family of the individual and in society.”  Literacy agencies and communities join the effort to improve literacy and to instill an appreciation for the power of reading. The United Nations established September 8th of each year as International Literacy Day.   International Literacy Day focuses attention on the need for worldwide literacy.  An estimated 774 million adults lack minimum literacy skills.  This number means that one in five adults is illiterate.  Two-thirds of the illiterate are women.  A clear connection exists between high rates of illiteracy and countries in severe poverty.  In these countries, communicable diseases including HIV, AIDS, tuberculosis, and malaria, remain as high public health concerns.

In Kosciusko County, Kosciusko Literacy Services (KLS) works in collaboration with Warsaw Community School’s Warsaw Adult Education at Gateway Education Center.  KLS recruits and trains tutors to work with adult students who are learning to read, earning a GED, or learning English as a second language.  The volunteer tutoring program will expand to meet the need created by a decrease in state and federal funding.  The Warsaw Adult Education budget has been reduced by 30% for the 2011-2012 school year.As a long-term strategy to improve adult literacy rates, KLS’s Read to Grow Children's Book Club provides books to preschool children from low-income families.  The goal of the Book Club is to have children enter kindergarten with the pre-literacy skills necessary for continued learning.  If a child enters kindergarten without these skills, the child will face many learning difficulties.  Research shows that children without proper stimulus during the preschool years are prone to performing below grade level, dropping out, and perpetuating the cycle of poverty and dependency. 

The ability to read is the gateway to the world.  Reading sparks one’s imagination and expands one’s knowledge, personal and cultural enrichment, and economic opportunities.  Literacy is fundamental to leading a full and productive life.  As society becomes centered on knowledge, literacy is fundamental to lifelong learning and productivity.  Literacy skills are the tools necessary to provide for oneself and one’s family.  For more information on volunteering or supporting literacy in Kosciusko County, call 574-267-5380.
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Tuesday, July 12, 2011

New Location
Beginning August 1st, Kosciusko Literacy Services will be in Room 3 of the Gateway Education Center.  The Alternative Learning Center is changing its name to Gateway Education Center when the Center moves to the old Madison Elementary School.  

The new address for Kosciusko Literacy Services is


201 North Union Street
 
Warsaw IN 46580

The phone numbers and email addresses remain unchanged. 
 
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Friday, May 27, 2011

New Website
Welcome to the new website for Kosciusko Literacy Services.
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2011.08.01 | 2011.07.01 | 2011.05.01

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