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


We’re baaaaaaaaaaaack!

Happy 2013:  May it be a year for continued professional development!

However, we must not forget that family and friends are also vital for our success.

Let the fun continue!


1.  Montana ABLE January Regional Meetings:  Cohorts and Data


January 17

Billings Lincoln Center Board Room

9:00 A.M. to 3 P.M.


                    January 31

Missoula Dickinson Lifelong Learning Center

9:30 A.M. to 3:30 P.M.


Contact Carol Flynn for more information.


2.  Montana ABLE ShopTalk


Click here  to access ShopTalk Summary: 

·       January Conference 

·       High School Equivalency Update

·       Federal Report 2012

·       MABLE Test Environment

·       Bridge Resources

·       SIA

·       Directors’ Meeting

·       GEMS

·       Program Monitoring


3.  MTLINCS Statistics 

Click here to view a summary of MTLINCS stats.  Overall, MTLINCS has continued to grow during the past five years.

4.  Montana ABLE Programs Highlight Success and Communicate Need

Click here to view what Montana ABLE programs are doing.  Contact local programs such as Bozeman, Great Falls, and Missoula to find out what they have done recently to communicate their success.

Click here to access GED Fact Sheet.

5.  Main Street Montana:  Career Pathways and GED Redesign 2014


Click here to read about Montana Career Pathways and GED Redesign 2014.


6.  Research Snippet:  Improving Adult Literacy Instruction – Options for Practice and Research, National Academy of Sciences, 2012


A new year means time to begin delving into the research on reading and writing!  In the MTLINCS email on 12/10/12, MTLINCS shared the research information about who we are serving, our adult literacy clientele.  Although we seem to know who we are serving, do we really know what our students need?


Background Information


Caution!  Because there has been little research completed regarding adult literacy, the information in the Improving Adult Literacy Instruction report has been


derived mainly from research with K-12 students because this population is the main focus of most rigorous research on reading components, difficulties in learning to read, and effective instructional practices … Caution must be used in generalizing research conducted in K-12 settings to other populations, such as adult literacy students. Precisely what needs to be taught and how will vary depending on an individual’s existing literacy skills; learning goals that require proficiency with particular types of reading and writing; and characteristics of learners that include differences in motivation, neurobiological processes, and cultural, linguistic, and educational backgrounds.

Improving Adult Literacy Instruction – Options for Practice and Research, Page 41


Types of Texts 

Developing readers need to confront challenging texts that engage them with meaningful content, but they also need texts that afford the practicing of the skills they need to develop and systematic support to stretch beyond existing skills. This support needs to come from a mix of instructional interactions and texts that scaffold the learner in developing and practicing new skills and becoming an independent reader (Lee and Spratley, 2010; Moje, 2009; Solomon, Van der Kerkhof, 2010).

Improving Adult Literacy Instruction – Options for Practice and Research, Page 44


Many of things cited in research affirm what we know and value.  Recognizing student experience is huge.  How do you do that with your students?


Student Knowledge and Teacher Knowledge and Expectation

·       Successful literacy instruction for adults and adolescents should recognize the knowledge and experience brought by mature learners, even when their literacy skills are weak …

·       To be effective, teachers of struggling readers and writers must have significant expertise in both the components of reading and writing, which include spoken language, and how to teach them ...

·       Students who were identified as reading at lower levels were not asked to think about the texts and interpret them in the same way as those at higher reading levels (see also Cazden, 1985). Being thought of as “successful” or “achieving” or, at the other extreme, “unsuccessful” and “failing” can produce low-literacy learning and even, in some cases, what is identified as disability (McDermott and Varenne, 1995).


Improving Adult Literacy Instruction – Options for Practice and Research, Page 46-47


Attempting to summarize major research is difficult.  MTLINCS will begin by citing information about the first two reading components.


Major Components of Reading


The major components of reading are well documented and include decoding, fluency, vocabulary, and comprehension.

Improving Adult Literacy Instruction – Options for Practice and Research, Page 49




·       Many adults with low literacy may experience difficulty with decoding (Baer, Kutner, and Sabatini, 2009; Greenberg, Ehri, and Perin, 1997, 2002; Mellard, Fall, and Woods, 2010; Nanda, Greenberg, and Morris, 2010; Read and Ruyter, 1985; Sabatini et al., 2010) …

·       For those adults who need to develop their word-reading skills, it may be important to teach “word attack” strategies with particular attention to challenges posed by multisyllabic words and variable vowel pronunciations.

Improving Adult Literacy Instruction – Options for Practice and Research, Page 52




·       Reading fluency is the ability to read with speed and accuracy (Klauda and Guthrie, 2008; Kuhn and Stahl, 2003; Miller and Schwanenflugel, 2006). Developing fluency is important because the human mind is limited in its capacity to carry out many cognitive processes at once (Logan, 2004). When word and sentence reading becomes automatic, readers can concentrate more fully on creating meaning from the text (Graesser, 2007; Perfetti, 2007; Rapp et al., 2007; van den Broek et al., 2009) …

·       Guided repeated reading has generally led to moderate increases in fluency, accuracy, and sometimes comprehension for both good and poor readers (Kuhn and Stahl, 2003; Kuhn et al., 2006; Vadasy and Sanders, 2008). In guided repeated reading, the learner receives feedback and is supported in identifying and correcting mistakes.

Improving Adult Literacy Instruction – Options for Practice and Research, Page 54-55)


What types of activities are you doing with your students to increase their abilities to decode and read fluently?


Stay tuned:  Vocabulary and Comprehension Research Coming!

National Information

7.  Students with Disabilities Toolkit


Taken from LINCS Disabilities in Adult Education


Click here to access The Toolkit on Teaching and Assessing Students with Disabilities.


The Tool Kit offers a compilation of current information that will move states forward in improving results for all students with disabilities. It was developed for students age birth through 21, though it likely has application for older adults as well. The Tool Kit will be added to over time to include more information designed to support states’ efforts and to communicate the results of research on teaching, learning, and assessments. The Tool Kit includes information about the Department’s investments, papers on large-scale assessment, technical assistance (TA) products, and resources. The section on large-scale assessment includes a collection of seven papers and a glossary that address key issues related to the participation of students with disabilities in these standards-based assessments. The TA products are divided into four substantive areas: Assessment, Instructional Practices, Behavior, and Accommodations. Primary access to the Tool Kit is through the Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP) Ideas That Work website. The website contains a table of contents that lists all Tool Kit resources. Users will find a description of each resource, including its citation and target audience. The website contains the master list of Tool Kit documents and will be updated as new products become available. There is a set of parent materials on the website as well.

8.  Technology:   Blended Learning

Taken from LINCS Community:  Technology and Learning

Click here access The Journal article 10 Predictions for Blended Learning in 2013.


Here are a couple of snippets from the article.

6. Tablets Gaining Disruptive Traction
The biggest drawback to replacing PCs with tablets has been that tablets are great at consumption but lousy at creation. But successful disruptive innovations always get better over time. Next year, chances are that even more classrooms will opt for the portability and relative affordability of tablets as the device of choice.

10. More Cramming of Technology into the Existing Model
In many quarters we're seeing schools buy technology for technology's sake, and it ends up collecting dust in the corner or contributing little to student outcomes. Our New Year's wish is for leaders to champion blended learning exclusively for the sake of students. Designing a student-centric system is the key to making next-generation learning designs enticing for the people at the heart of the issue--kids.

9.  Writing:   Reminder of Video

Taken from LINCS Community:  Technology and Learning

The subject of the Media Library of Teaching Skills video that has over 13,000 hits is how to write a five-paragraph essay for the (current) GED(r) writing test. On YouTube it will be found at It's also available on

David Rosen


… I believe the majority of students enrolled in GED prep will appreciate the style and content of the lesson … I have continued to use that method with my GED class. In addition, I let them know that this is an accepted method for the current GED test, but more advanced principles will be used when they enroll in a community college writing class.

KS Rivera


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