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At least 40 million American adults need stronger literacy skills to take advantage of more lifelong learning opportunities Knowles 12 Low literacy limits life chances regardless of how it is defined or measured According to The Random House Dictionary literacy is defined as the quality or state of being literate esp the ability to read and write Another breakdown of the word from the same source is possession of education Basic skills and literacy abilities are widely viewed as necessities for lifelong learning and the development of success among individuals families communities and even nations Better knowledge about literacy is an essential condition for improving it Helping children improve their literacy skills can help them develop the capacity for lifelong learning keep pace with changing educational expectations and rapid technological change and achieve their life goals Today in society there are many adults with poor literacy skills who lack the foundation they need to find and keep decent jobs to support their childrens education and help them mold a literate future I have taken one small step towards this problem by tutoring at North Junior High Campus and Thomas Jefferson Middle School The more time people put towards helping the youth of America is the more literate our population can become Every small action can help even if it is just tutoring at local middle and junior high schools To determine the literacy skills of American adults the 1992 National Adult Literacy Survey NALS used test items that resembled everyday life tasks The NALS classified the results into five levels that are now commonly used to describe adults literacy skills In Level 1 almost all of the adults can read a little but not well enough to fill out an application read a food label or read a simple story to a child Adults in Level 2 usually can perform more complex tasks such as comparing contrasting or integrating pieces of information but usually not
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