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Teaching in the Times of COVID-19

Classrooms have been shut down. But that has not stopped learning in many of HOPE Literacy's sites across Tarrant County. Site directors are launching new educational efforts through Facebook, youtube, and even cell phone texts and calls.

At HOPE/Central Bible Church, the ESL program had already established aFacebook groupfor their ministry. That group became a school of online learning. Site Director Noemi Cruz publishes weekly video lessons and her sidekick, Alexis Valdez, produces posts she calls "Saturday Idioms" which explores common English expressions.

At HOPE/World Relief, Site Director Wendy Bogar explains, "We are doing our best to keep our students engaged and progressing through the use of a Facebook group that provides links to online learning websites such as citizenship test practice and literacy exercises." But Wendy found that many students did not have access to the internet, so she launched a second effort. "We send out short video lessons via text, and reach out to each individual weekly with a short phone call to check in on their well-being and provide a chance to practice English conversational skills," she said.

The HOPE/Southcliff site has started aFacebook groupas well but recognized that they could meet more immediate humanitarian needs in the wake of COVID-19. As a result, Southcliff launched a weekly food distribution in the apartment complex where many of their ESL students live.

The pandemic may have stifled traditional class learning, but it has not stopped HOPE Literacy's determination to share language, literacy, and the love of Christ.

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