Adult Literacy Instructor
Essential Skills Upgrading
Toronto District School Board
Shelley was born and raised in England and started her working life with computers that filled the room. Recruited in England, she came to Canada some decades ago, and after computers dabbled in alternative health care and then became an ESL Instructor.
She loves reading and the English language so volunteered to help adults learn to read in a local church basement and found her current career and passion as an adult literacy instructor. She has been with Essential Skills Upgrading at TDSB for 13 years where her quirky English Canadian accent is a plus. Shelley loves helping people learn English, Math, and computers to achieve their learning goals. Learners value her patience and detailed explanations and examples. With a patient hands-on approach, she helps people gain confidence and realize they could always do it with practice e.g. “I hate Math” becomes “give me another puzzle”.
When thrown in the deep end with online learning, she slowly gathered tools to help her learners and herself with help from AlphaPlus. With a background in computers, Shelley enjoys using digital technology to help build a learning community. A Learning Management System (Canvas) was the final piece that helped learners manage their work and helped the instructor, too.
Shelley was surprised to discover her learners made more progress in a year online than in the classroom and set out to understand “why”? Her focused interactive group and one-on-one approach allowed learners to make more progress with less direct instructor contact hours. Canvas (LMS) helped learners submit their homework. Instead of learners asking her if they were making progress, they started telling her what progress they had made and how good they felt about themselves e.g. “I can’t speak / read well” becomes “Friends tell me I’m speaking better”. The proof is in the pudding. 🙂
In her spare time, Shelley loves learning, history, nature, and games & puzzles.