Montana LINCS Update


Greetings from Montana LINCS


Problems with the links in the email?

Go to the Email Archives in the upper left-hand corner on the home page at



Montana ABLE Information


1.  MTLINCS:  Policy and Legislation


Need to know what the Office of Vocational and Adult Education supports?  Want to find out What’s New on the national front, discover what national resources are available to guide the improvement of adult education and literacy services, and read the OVAE Connection newsletter?  Click on Policy and Legislation.


Policy and Legislation


Click on Policy and Legislation which is located at the top left-hand column under About Literacy on the MTLINCS homepage at  


Can’t find what you are looking for?  Send a message to MTLINCS at .


 2.  Montana ABLE ShopTalk Summary and Important Dates


Click here  to read the ShopTalk Summary from January 17.

Click here to check out important dates posted on the Calendar.



3.  Reminder!  Mountain Plains Adult Education Association (MPAEA) Conference 2012 in Helena:  Implementing Career Pathways in Adult Education


Talk to your program director today!  


A great opportunity to participate in a regional training is headed you way in just three months!!!  The annual MPAEA conference will be held in Helena on April 11 – 14 at the Red Lion Colonial Inn.  Not only will you be able to network with your state colleagues but also with regional and national representatives.


Conference Website: 


Click here  to access the MPAEA Conference website.




Travel and Lodging:


State trainings will be held in conjunction with MPAEA.  Mileage and lodging

will be provided for ABLE representatives from Montana ABLE programs.  This will enable Montana ABLE staff to participate in many things at one location:  TABE Training, Bridge Program Training, Directors’ Meeting, BEST+ Training, and a Montana ESL mini-conference!!!


Conference Rate:


Even if Montana educators are *not* members of MPAEA, they will be able to register for the conference as MPAEA members.


Conference Presentation:  Presenting at MPAEA 2012 is a great way for you to share information with participants.  Click here to submit a proposal!  Deadline is January 31!


4.  Learning to Achieve Follow-up Coming Your Way Soon!!!!

National Information


5.  National Professional Development Survey Reactions


Taken from LINCS Professional Development Discussion List

David Rosen, Formerly the Director of the Adult Literacy Resource Institute at the University of Massachusetts Boston/SABES and now an independent consultant, recently completed an unscientific survey of professional development:


Some background: The survey was not scientific, and therefore not necessarily generalizable to the whole field.  I did the survey because I was interested in what the trends are in using online, distance and blended learning. The answers are illuminating. I was also interested in how PD is faring with all the budget cuts to our field in the past few years. Also illuminating.  David J. Rosen


Reaction #1


OK, so I am going to be the first or only instructor here to admit that PD, for me, is not entirely about the student?  PD has been, at times, the only thing that kept me in the profession at all.  The chance to collaborate with other teachers, learn alternative techniques (that I might be forced to use (but hopefully not), but plant a seed or two for [other] ideas to improve my instruction), the chance to review research without having to sit down alone and wade through hundreds of pages to winnow out the salient facts, the chance to view the inspiring, interesting ideas of others in the field even if they are not residents of my state, and  last but not only and not least, the chance to see new places, increase my own knowledge and experiences, to allow a regeneration of my excitement about teaching and learning...those are my reasons PD and for loving PD.  If they, in turn, make me a better teacher, or just a more pleasant person, are those things not sufficient in themselves?  Rather than evaluate any particular program for effectiveness, has anyone thought to evaluate those who chose PD versus those who either chose none (or were forced into a particular workshop) for the results on student learning and retention?  I go to PD for me because I love to learn and I want to be a better teacher, but that may not always translate into increased learning and retention of students right away.  It may take years for an idea to germinate or for the materials to implement an idea to become readily available.  Was the PD a failure then?


While I feel very strongly about this issue, it is not easy to put it into words.  Maybe it sums itself up this way for me: when you take the personal out of professional development, you also take out the passion.  And when I have no passion for what I do, I don't do it as well.

Claire Ludovico


Reaction #2


To me, it would make more sense to only conduct PD on a new teaching strategy for teachers if the strategy itself has first been shown to get positive results with students.  If we try to evaluate a new teaching strategy that we don’t know if it will get results or not, I wonder if we might end up like I was most of the time in my first days of learning Spanish: very confused.

Phil Anderson, FL Dept. of Education


Click here  to read more postings.

6.  Learning Disabilities Article:  Early Brain Changes May Indicate Dyslexia


Taken from LINCS LD Discussion List

Click here

to access the article, “Early Brain Changes May Indicate Dyslexia”.


A group of researchers say they may be close to finding a way to resolve what’s known as the “dyslexia paradox”: the fact that the earlier a child is diagnosed with dyslexia, the easier it is to treat, but because the disorder is characterized by difficulty in reading and speaking, it is not typically diagnosed until a child reaches third grade, which many experts consider to be late.


Click here to read reactions on LD Discussion List.  Below are some snippets.


Reaction #1 to Discussion


While I agree wholeheartedly that screening and intervention should take place as early in school as possible, I think it is a significant exaggeration to assert that "nearly 20% of the population has dyslexia." I am quite sure the 20% (+/-) refers to children at risk for reading problems in about 1st grade (as the NICH study indicated a few years ago). That number drops as they get more instruction in reading.   Dyslexia caused by difficulties in associating sounds and symbols, I believe is said to occur at a rate of 5% or less in the general population.  We should not be throwing around the term to refer to other kinds of reading challenges.  


Robin H. Lovrien, Ph.D., Consultant in Adult ESOL/Learning Difficulties

Reaction #2 to Discussion


I agree with Dr. Robin H. Lovrien's post that the figures for dyslexia are closer to 5% of the population.  The difficulty that children encounter is that up to 3rd grade children are learning to read, but after 3rd grade they are reading to learn.  It puts them at a double deficit.  They have less exposure to vocabulary and it puts them at an additional disadvantage.  In addition, reading can always being remediated, but self-esteem is a much harder nut to crack.  Dyslexia is not the disability that system's inability to meet each child and adult at his or her need creates. In edition it costs much more to remediate an older child than it costs to provide appropriate interventions as they are first learning and it takes longer and a more concerted effort to learn.


It is NEVER too late to learn to read.  It just cost more monetarily to remediate than to provide interventions and it cost more emotionally to a person's self-esteem.  The brain's plasticity makes it possible for persons of all ages to learn how to read.  It is never too late, but it is hard to convince a person who has given up on themselves.  If you have been convinced through personal experiences that you are unable to learn, if you believe it is somehow your fault, it makes it hard to overcome that emotional trauma.


Darla Hatton



Reaction #3 to Discussion


Currently, it is thought to be in the range of 10% +     However the important piece to know is that all Struggling readers, Economically disadvantaged, English language learners,  students with Dyslexia and those  with Specific learning disabilities, SEEDS students all learn to read- in the same  sequential steps- what changes is the intensity, pace and the explicitness needed for each skill deficit as it relates to the needs of the individual student.


Cheryl Ward MSM, CALP, President

Wisconsin Branch-International Dyslexia Association

 7.  Math Resource:  Pre-Algebra and Integers


Taken from LINCS Math and Numeracy and Diversity Discussion List

Click here to access Narrated PowerPoints and Camtasia presentations.

 8.  Math Resource:  Museum of Mathematics


Taken from LINCS Math and Numeracy and Diversity Discussion List

Click here  to read about the nation’s first Museum of Mathematics!!!

 9.  Workforce:  National Job Transitions Network


Taken from LINCS Workforce Discussion List

Click here to access resources from Heartland Alliance.


Most people experiencing or at risk of homelessness want to work and paid employment is a critical piece in helping individuals achieve personal and family stability. Evidence and practice tells us that when offered employment opportunities and supports, people experiencing or at risk of homelessness can and do succeed in work.



P.S.  Remember -- if you are having trouble with the links in this email, go to the Email Archives at the top of the MTLINCS homepage at .  Also if you no longer wish to receive this mailing, please let me know!  Thanks!


Norene Peterson
Adult Education Center
415 N. 30th
Billings, MT 59101