Blursday or not – Learning Lab is Teaching
What would your life be like if you could not read this post, or you could not read a book, or could not even read a street sign? I would suggest that your life would be frustrating to say the least.
Olga is a refugee from Congo and came to the US in 2012. She knew learning English was imperative and attended Learning Lab’s outreach class at Davis Park Apartments. She continued with the classes and completed a refugee childcare business development program, opened a daycare, and now manages a prosperous farm through Global Gardens.
Learning Lab, in Garden City, helps educate adults and families to make their lives better. Their mission is to transform the lives of adults and families through personalized education – and that is what they do every day. Their goal is to help people improve their literacy skills so that they can further their education, get a job, get a better job, help their family and fully engage in the community.
Prior to COVID all of their classes were in person. Students would come to class and work with tutors on lessons created just for them. Though students came from diverse places and background and had varying levels of literacy skills, they came together as a community in the classroom.
Then came COVID and things had to change. Safely meeting the needs of their students and retaining that sense of community was of primary importance. By using Zoom, Facebook, WhatsApp, Instagram, phone calls, text, email, and good old-fashioned postal service, classes were able to continue. The early childhood team delivered literacy kits to families. Essentially, they did whatever they needed to do to keep their students learning.
After being homeless and struggling with addiction, Kathleen turned her life around, sought treatment and started therapy. She became such a valuable coach and role model in her treatment program that she was asked to mentor others. Her goal was to become a Peer Support Specialist – but first she needed to earn her GED.
This is where learning Lab came in. Kathleen had been home-schooled by her mother until about 8th grade and had never attended a regular school. Lila, at Learning Lab, eased her concerns and assured her that with hard work she could achieve her goal. Working One-On-One with her tutors, she earned her GED and is now a Certified Peer Support Specialist.
GBRF applauds Learning Lab for engaging the refugee community and providing opportunities for all to become productive and contributing members of the Treasure Valley Community.
Learning Lab has been in the Boise community, for almost 30 years, adapting their classes to meet the need of their students.