Meet Jane, July's Literacy Leader!

Jane Dorn is an English as a Second Language classroom volunteer in Saint Michael. She’s been volunteering for nearly six years and has worked in beginning through advanced levels. She loves seeing her students’ passion for learning, and, as a retired special education teacher, she loves that she is still able to affect so many lives through teaching. “While I was still working, I read for years about the need for volunteers in the Buffalo Hanover Montrose Community Education Bulletins. Once I retired it seemed like such a good fit for me to volunteer for ABE (Adult Basic Education) programming”. The Buffalo Hanover Montrose ABE program has excellent English and GED classes, and learners come from all over the area to participate in classes and learn from volunteers.

Jane tutors on Monday mornings, walking through the classroom as learners work and helping those that are struggling. She often leads smaller groups in learning activities, and sometimes serves as a substitute teacher. Volunteering in an ESL classroom has helped Jane appreciate where her learners come from and how valuable education is to them.

Jane says, “Our adult learners are very motivated to improve their English, and that is not an easy task! They really want to be in class and it’s not always easy for them to attend. All of the students are hard workers.”

The lead teacher in Jane’s classroom, Pam Dane, says, “[Jane] brings in supplies that will add to the lessons to help the students understand and grasp the language better.  She breaks down concepts so that each student understands. She is very student-focused and is a delight to have in class. The students all love her.”

Recalling a favorite memory from the classroom, Jane said, “On Pam’s birthday one year, I loved listening to each student singing ‘Happy Birthday’ in his or her native language. It represented how much we all have in common and how we love others, regardless of where we come from or what language we speak”. Jane adds that it’s “great fun to see [students’] skills improve, and see the pride they feel. I have heard some remarkable life stories. Most of these wonderful people have had difficult life experiences and I consider them my very special friends.”

Outside of class, Jane enjoys spending time with friends and family. She loves to travel, especially to Hawaii, and also enjoys time reading and doing home improvement projects.

Thank you Jane, for your lifelong dedication to learning, and for being a true Literacy Leader!

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