Adult Literacy Blogs

Where can you find blogs for and by adult literacy practitioners? Here’s a short list, some of the annotations for which appeared in a Web Scan column I wrote for the Adult Basic Education and Literacy Journal .

Adult Literacy Practitioner Blogs

1) Adult Literacy Education (this blog) A compilation of posts that David J. Rosen has made, over the years, to electronic discussion lists and wikis as well as new posts. The topics all have to do with adult literacy education,  and often focus on technology, primarily in the U.S. David J. Rosen has been working in adult literacy education as a teacher, program administrator, education professional developer, trainer, curriculum developer, researcher and consultant since 1982. You will find his resume at

2) National Coalition for Literacy advocacy The National Coalition for Literacy has an online blog forum to engage NCL members in cultivating and supporting public policy advocates, assisting advocates with questions asked by the press and the public, and expanding the number of active advocates in support of adult and family literacy. The NCL posts frequent public policy updates, as well as key information and resources pertinent to the current federal public policy landscape. Additionally, they plan to host  2-4 blog discussions with NCL members who are federal advocacy experts ( during critical times for advocacy.

adultedmatters 3) Adult Education Matters Martha Rankin, the author of this blog, is the assistant principal at the Newport-Mesa Adult School in California. Since the fall of 2007 she has been writing a  “professional-learning-community blog focused on the matters of adult education” such as (from the blog): * Increasing student motivation, retention, and persistence * Identifying and meeting student goals * Guiding students to the appropriate programs, courses, and levels * Sharing best practices * Collaborating to increase student achievement * Providing literacy and job-skills training * Helping working-age adults get high school equivalency and  enroll in postsecondary programs * Using innovative delivery systems like distance learning * Sustaining professional learning communities * Delivering professional development for adult education and others.  The blog is tailored to the professional development needs of the Newport-Mesa adult school staff, but many of the blog articles will be of interest to a broader audience.  These include: designing site-based professional development; resources for family literacy, ESOL; GED prep; nutrition education; formative and summative assessments; integrating technology in the classroom; how to create your own (free) blog; Paolo Freire’s vision of education, and others. This is a great example, for other program professional development leaders, of a blog designed for an adult school or program that provides leadership in professional development.

Adult Education and Technology blog 4) Adult Education and Technology Marian Thacher was the Director of OTAN in California, the Sacramento County Office of Education project that is responsible for adult education technology professional development across California, and is now with CALPRO, California’s adult education professional development oprganization. According to one of the articles on Marian Thacher’s blog, the secret to getting good help in learning technology is cookies, not the kind you turn on our off in your browser, the kind you bake for the tech support person at your school or program. Marian looks at new technology applications with the eye of an adult ed teacher or administrator: would this be useful in the classroom or program, and how could it be best used? Marian’s blog introduced me to a.viary, for example, a free web site that allows you to edit images. I recommend this to all adult ed practitioners who what to use technology better.

Alphaplus blog 5) AlphaPlus Blog (Canada) The AlphaPlus Centre is an organization in Toronto, in Canada that focuses on adult literacy in the province of Ontario. They have been “providing information, research, and print and electronic resources to the Adult Literacy field in Ontario for over 15 years” and have done many wonderful projects with distance learning. The AlphaPlus Blog might be of interest to U.S. Educators, as well as other North Americans. It includes short articles, for example, resources for International Womens’ Day, the Adult Literacy Education Wiki, the New Zealand Literacy Portal, Google Calendar and Google Notebook, Learners’ Perspectives on progress, and more.

6) Tech4ESL and These two blogs are by California adult ESOL practitioner, Barry Bakin, who teaches at the  Pacoima Skills Center, part of the Division of Adult and Career Education of the Los Angeles Unified School District. The first is for teachers, the second for students in an ESOL low intermediate class.

7) Farrell Ink Meagen Farrell’s high school equivalency blog focuses on the GED(r) exam and preparation for it.

8) Tech Tips for Teachers by Steve Quann and Leah Peterson (Updated  11.26.14) Steve Quann and Leah Peterson from World Education write this blog for the LINCS Region 1 Professional Development Center. Their goal is to provide a resource to adult education teachers and tutors who are interested in integrating technology into instruction, but are not sure where to start. They offer practical ideas and hope to inspire teachers to try new things.  Their first group of tech tips focuses on reading. Each month they plan to  select a different theme.

9) Distance Education Skill Share by Jason Guard (added 1.17.13)

10) Working in Adult Literacy by Kate Nonesuch (added 11.26.14)

11) Teacher to Teacher — Activities for Teaching Adult ESOL by Sarah Lynn. (Added 2.1.15)

Student Blogs

Here are two examples of adult learner blog sites. Both have interesting articles by students. I am sure the students who wrote these articles would love to have other students read and comment on them. Maybe that activity would spark some interest in your students writing their own blog! 1) The first is a blog for ESOL students, developed in Sydney, Australia It is rich in text, images, slide shows and other media. 2) The second is from Ontario, Canada. I especially like the Hemingway-inspired 6-word memoirs.

5 Responses to “Adult Literacy Blogs”

  1. Marian Thacher Says:

    Thanks for plugging my blog, David! And I’m glad to see that you’ve linked also to the Newport Mesa Adult School blog, Adult Ed Matters, that serves as their online professional learning community.

    At OTAN we keep a wiki with links to all the Web 2.0 examples we find in adult education, and here is a link to the page on blogs, which contains lots of examples of how blogs are being used by adult educators.


  2. paul england Says:

    I had fun understanding this post. I want to see more on this subject.. Gives Thanks for writing this nice article.. Anyway, Im going to sign to your rss and I wish you write great articles again soon.

  3. Best Practices for Teaching English Learners | Online Resources for Teachers Says:

    […] Adult Literacy Blogs « Adult Literacy Education […]

  4. Melinda Johnston Says:

    This is a great list of resources. I’d like to share a couple more blogs about adult literacy that Literacy BC maintains:

    ELMO Reviews ( This site is filled with reviews of books and other resources by and for adult literacy practitioners and learners.

    Read All About Lit ( This blog, by the Literacy BC Library, notes resources, events and other news of interest to adult literacy practitioners.

    Learning Disabilities and Whole-Life Learning ( this blog focuses on resources and tips for adult literacy practitioners with students who struggle with learning disabilities.

  5. Graeme Smith Says:

    just found your blog… great! Many thanks from the world of adult literacy and numeracy in NZ

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