K, my literacy learner, and I met for the first time on Friday morning at a local library. I think we're going to get along really well. She's a little shy but seems very sweet. It sounds like her home life isn't the greatest. Her mom passed away when she was eleven and now she lives with her dad and at least two of her six (!!!) younger siblings. She doesn't see some of her younger siblings because she doesn't get along with their moms, so she stays away to not create any drama. Despite this, K is cheerful and very ambitious. She really wants to go to college and be either a nurse, a psychologist, or a judge.
I was curious to hear her read out loud, so I brought a few young adult books with me from our extensive collection, intending to have her read just for a couple minutes to get an idea of what she needs to work on. She picked a "you be the judge/you be the jury" version of the Lizzie Borden trial. It's a good book for an 18 year old with a low reading level because it goes over all of the facts of the trial in detail, but using simple language. K did a great job reading, better than I was anticipating based on her information sheet. She can read most short, common words easily but has trouble with longer words. She doesn't do much sounding out, sometimes switched nouns to verbs (murderer vs murdering), and sometimes doesn't understand what she's read. But like I said, she reads a lot better than I was anticipating based on the information I was given. She wants to improve her reading and spelling and work on her cursive.
K wants to continue reading the Lizzie Borden book, which is pretty cool, considering the fact that I just randomly picked it out for her to read a few paragraphs. We ended up reading a few pages and it looks like we'll be reading the whole book! I have a bunch of ideas for other things to work on in our next session. I'm very excited about working with her! She's really motivated and really wants to learn, so I think we'll be able to accomplish a lot.