Volunteer Trainings

Volunteer Trainings

Get ready to volunteer!

Volunteer Foundations Training

ABE teachers and tutors have busy schedules, so finding time to attend in-person trainings or live webinars can be a challenge! Literacy Minnesota has videos and self-paced online courses in the Canvas Learning Management System (LMS) that can be completed asynchronously. Participants in Minnesota* can earn CEU credit for completing this work through either one of these formats.  

Video format

In order to view the video recordings, click on the links below and register for the training through the Literacy Minnesota website. After registration, a link is sent to a webpage where the recordings, materials, and reflection guides can be accessed. Complete the reflection guide as you watch the video. Once completed, send a copy to Literacy Minnesota to receive full participation credit. 

Canvas LMS format

We are working toward having the large majority of our video trainings available, instead, in the Canvas LMS format. Currently, Volunteer Core Training Modules 1 & 2 are only available as Canvas courses. Register at the links below and then you will receive an email to self-enroll in the Canvas course on the Canvas website. You will receive CEU credit within 7 business days of completing the course. Please contact Meghan Boyle at mboyle@literacymn.org with questions about this process. 

*Note: Due to conditions stipulated by the Minnesota Department of Adult Education, recorded training reflection forms and Canvas LMS coursework submitted by out-of-state residents will not be reviewed by Literacy Minnesota staff, and therefore cannot result in CEUs for out-of-state residents. Out-of-state residents can, however, earn CEUs from live webinars.


Volunteer Core Training Modules

Remote Instruction

  • Remote Teaching 101: Learn best practices for connecting and communicating one-to-one with learners on the phone or online, get suggestions for correcting errors and checking comprehension in a virtual setting, and discover language activities that can be done over the phone or on a video call. (2 CEUs)
  • Making It Work: Adapting Materials for Remote Teaching: In this workshop, learn recommendations for adapting materials designed for in-person instruction into a remote teaching format. The presenter will demonstrate approaches for introducing reading, writing, and vocabulary on a phone or computer, and will model adaptations for common ESL classroom activities. (2 CEUs)
  • A Roadmap for Success: Remote Lesson Planning: During this webinar, you will learn how to design lessons so that both the teacher and the learners experience success. Topics covered include: how to write effective objectives to guide your planning, tried and true planning methods and lesson plan formats, and how to build in comprehension checks throughout the lesson. (2 CEUs)
  • Facilitating Positive Learner Experiences during Remote Instruction: In this webinar, Literacy Minnesota teachers will share some of their favorite virtual routines that promote successful learning. Discover tried and true practices for creating interactive and engaging small group and large group virtual activities, and learn tricks and explore free tools to make virtual lessons go smoothly. (2 CEUs)
  • Talk Amongst Yourselves: Building Up to Student-Facilitated Conversations: Learn about three essential skills students need in order to join a conversation and keep it going. This webinar will demonstrate how to introduce those strategies and get students talking in small groups online. (2 CEUs)

Special Topics

  • Teaching Citizenship In-Person or Online Jessica Horning, citizenship teacher for the Literacy Minnesota Open Door Learning Centers, shares important background information and multiple ways to teach and review the content of the citizenship interview in fun, interactive ways. Participants will receive links to online resources that can be used in one-on-one or small group teaching settings. (2 CEUs)
  • A Volunteer's Introduction to Universal Design for Learning Universal Design for Learning (UDL) is an approach that enhances educational equity by creating more accessible learning experiences for all students. This introductory webinar covers fundamental UDL concepts, the similarities and differences between UDL and disability accommodations, and some UDL strategies for adult learners across levels. We’ll also highlight the UDL connections in Literacy Minnesota’s new curriculum, English Unlocked. Join us to learn about how you can help implement UDL in any volunteer role, whether you serve as a classroom assistant, tutor, or teacher. This workshop meets the Literacy Minnesota Equity and Cultural Awareness in Education Certificate Program requirements (2 CEUs). Note: This session is primarily designed for volunteers who follow predetermined curricula and lesson plans. For those with control or discretion over lesson and classroom design, we also recommend the PANDA UDL training (offered annually in January).
  • How to Work Effectively with Muslims Presented by CAIR-MN Watch this session with Jaylani Hussein of CAIR MN to learn how to effectively work with Muslim learners by bringing awareness and eliminating potential bias. Participants will answer questions to both learn about Muslim culture, while simultaneously learning ideas about unconscious bias. The session also includes an in-depth explanation of the religion and cultural norms, including keywords, holidays, and customs held in Muslim culture, and it concludes with a discussion on how Muslims practice their beliefs, emphasizing the continuum of diversity of practice within the religion. The presenter also touches on religious accommodations in educational settings. This workshop meets the Literacy Minnesota Equity and Cultural Awareness in Education Certificate Program requirements (2 CEUs)
  • Culturally Responsive Practices for Diverse Adult Learners with Jimmie Heags  Join presenter Jimmie Heags, Jr., MA, LSC, LPCC, LADC, ACS, for this session that explores how cultural identities and experiences impact student-instructor interactions and shape the way we make meaning of the world. Participants will gain awareness of their own cultural perspectives, social location and the need for cultural humility in Adult Basic Education with the goal of enhancing the outcomes of adult learners and educators' own professional development. Learning will be acquired through the explanation of concepts, anecdotes and stories, videos and deep reflection. This workshop meets the Literacy Minnesota Equity and Cultural Awareness in Education Certificate Program requirements (1.5 CEUs)

  • Understanding the Somali People Presented by CAIR-MN   Somalis are estimated to be the largest African immigrant group in Minnesota with approximately 75,000-100,000 residing in the state (source: McKnight Foundation)

    This training covers:

    • Pre- and post-modern history of the Somali people.
    • Culture.
    • Migration to Minnesota.
    • Cultural gaps between the Somali and American communities.
    • Recommendations for outreach to Somali community members. (2 CEUs)