Marshall Adult Education


December 30, 2005



1.  During the Holiday Break, the office will be closed on Monday, January 2nd.  Classes and the ABE office will resume regular hours on Tuesday, January 3rd.  I hope everyone has enjoyed the holidays!  A reminder too that the Courthouse will be closed on January 16th for Martin Luther King, Jr. Day.  There will be no classes at the Courthouse that day and the office will be closed.

2.  Starting the 2nd week of January, we will  offer a Civics ESL Class.  This class is for higher level ESL students and will be funded through the Civics Grant.  We will be scheduling the class from 6:30/7:00 to 9:00 p.m. for 4 days per week.  The class will run for 22 weeks.  If anyone is interested in teaching this class, please contact Pat.


3.  The next consortium staff meeting is January 14, 2006.  Marn Frank will be repeating her sessions on Learning to Read and Reading to Learn.  A description of her sessions and a tentative agenda can be found on the website - click on the link below..



4.  We are looking for suggestions for computer training at the next consortium meeting.  If you have an idea or suggestions for the training session, please email me.  (Last chance to submit any topics for training - If I get none, we may be learning how to use the programming languages, ASP, Java, PERL, Q-Basic, SGML, C++, Visual Basic, Fortran, CGI, VRML, Object REXX, DHTML, HTML and Double-Dutch).


5.  December Student Attendance/Intakes & CASAS scores should be to the office by Tuesday, January 3rd.  Remember that it is very important for you to stay current with your CASAS testing -- and turning the information into the office.--------------------------------------------------

6.  Staff Reviews:  I will begin setting up visits with each staff in the Marshall Region in December to do a Performance Self Review.  At this time we will also review the Student Level Change data for students you have served since May 1st.   Again I would encourage you to consider your student's  progress and post test them if you feel they can demonstrate a level change.  You can find the Performance Self Review with the link below.  You can fill the form out on-line or email it.  ~Pat


7.  Here is a list of computer classes offered within the Marshall ABE region.  A brochure is also available for download.



8.  The Minnesota Literacy Council is seeking entries for the 2006 edition of To Open Your Mind, our annual publication of writing by adult learners.  Learners, volunteers and teachers consistently note the power of this publication to motivate and recognize learners. The material in To Open Your Mind is great for ABE teachers to use in class because it is interesting to adult learners and relevant to their lives. ABE teachers use the publication to help students work on their writing, reading comprehension, fluency and vocabulary. A Teacher’s Guide to using To Open Your Mind will be printed in the back of the publication (it is also printed in the back of your 2005 edition).


Last year's publication was our biggest ever, with 676 submissions from 88 adult literacy programs across the state, and we are looking forward to another great year.

The deadline for submissions of original stories, essays, poems and drawings is Friday, February 3, 2006. We strongly encourage electronic submissions and typed rather than handwritten submissions.  Please see the guidelines and entry form for more details.

If you have questions or need help, please contact Guy Haglund at or 651-645-2277 ext. 201 or 800-225-7323. Thank you for contributing to the success of To Open Your Mind in 2006!

9.  The Reading Skills for Today's Adults on-line version is up and running.  Students can now go through the Reading Skills program on-line.  Check it out here.


10.  Literacy Minnesota ABE News
On the Literacy Minnesota homepage, you'll find a link to the "2003 National Assessment of Adult Literacy," as well as the following Fact Sheets:
- Helping Adults Become Literate
- Adult Education and Family Literacy

Other Literacy Minnesota Links to check out;
-Literacy Minnesota Membership

-Literacy Minnesota Committees


-Events and Conferences

Here is their website


11.  From Jeanine Antony, Western Community Action - Re:  Goodwill vouchers.  If we have a household who is in need of a Goodwill voucher we need to call Georgian in Sioux City IA-1-877-608-7775 ext 103--to request a voucher to be sent to the Marshall store.  At the time of the call she will need the person’s name to check the data base.  A household is only allowed 1 voucher/year—2 in a lifetime.  If they are eligible a voucher will be faxed to Marshall store.  She also informed me that each AGENCY is eligible to request 5 vouchers/month.  I have requested several over the past few months I have not reached my limit but wanted to share info with my partners in the community!  For more information, call Jeanine at 537-1416 or email:

12.  Barry Shaffer forwarded this from the USDOE-DAEL: 


The DAEL web page has been updated to provide you with information to respond to inquiries related to the release of the NAAL report.   In addition to providing you with a direct link to the NCES site where the report can be downloaded, we have added two new documents:


Helping Adults Become Literate - a two page description of what OVAE is doing to ensure adults are equipped with the literacy skills necessary to succeed in the 21st Century. (


Adult Education and Family Literacy Program Fact Sheet - contains important information about the adult education program.

I hope you find these documents useful to responding to questions that the release of NAAL is likely to trigger in the states.
13.  The non-confidential job postings that Job Service shares with us are posted on the ABE Website each week.  Check them out here. 
14.  From the Trivia Department:   Computer Humor - this site has terabytes of computer humor.  Check it out - don't read them all in one sitting.
If you want general humor, go to the netfunny homepage:
15.  Thought for the week:   Nothing splendid has ever been achieved except by those who dared believe something inside them was superior to circumstance -Bruce Barton

16.  TECH TIP:  Help Desk Humor

This is "computer humor week."  (The last week of every year is - you probably didn't know that). We will resume our regular Tech Tips next week.  So, here they are - the top Tech Support help desk items of 2005.  These are actual items called in to Help Desks.  Of course, I never get any calls like this - I only work with tech savvy people.  Now if you need an explanation to any of these, just drop me a line.


Customer: I'm trying to connect to the Internet with your CD, but it just doesn't work. What am I doing wrong?
Tech support: OK, you've got the CD in the CD drive, right?
Customer: Yeah....
Tech support: And what sort of computer are you using?
Customer: Computer? Oh no, I haven't got a computer. It's in my CD player and all I get is weird noises. Listen.....
Tech support: Aaaarrrrgggghhhh!!!

Tech support: What kind of computer do you have?
Customer: A white one...

Tech support: Click on the "my computer" icon on the left of the screen.
Customer: Your left or my left?

Customer: Hi, good afternoon, this is Martha, I can't print.  Every time I try, it says, "Can't find printer." I've even lifted the printer and placed it in front of the monitor, but the computer still says he can't find it...

Tech support: What's on your monitor now, ma'am?
Customer: A teddy bear my boyfriend bought for me in the supermarket.

Customer: My keyboard is not working anymore.
Tech support: Are you sure it's plugged in to the computer?
Customer: No. I can't get behind the computer.
Tech support: Pick up your keyboard and walk 10 paces back.
Customer: OK.
Tech support: Did the keyboard come with you?
Customer: Yes.
Tech support: That means the keyboard is not plugged in. Is there another keyboard?
Customer: Yes, there's another one here. Ah...that one does work.

Tech support: Your password is the small letter a as in apple, a capital letter V as in Victor, the number 7.
Customer: Is that 7 in capital letters?

Customer: I can't get on the Internet.
Tech support: Are you sure you used the right password?
Customer: Yes, I'm sure. I saw my colleague do it.
Tech support: Can you tell me what the password was?
Customer: Five stars.

Tech support: What anti-virus program do you use?
Customer: Netscape.
Tech support: That's not an anti-virus program.
Customer: Oh, sorry...Internet Explorer.

Customer: I have a huge problem. A friend has placed a screen saver on my computer, but every time I move the mouse, it disappears.

Tech support: How may I help you?
Customer: I'm writing my first e-mail.
Tech support: OK, and what seems to be the problem?
Customer: Well, I have the letter "a" in the address, but how do I get the circle around it?

A woman customer called the Canon help desk with a problem with her printer.
Tech support: Are you running it under Windows?
Customer: No, my desk is next to the door, but that is a good point. The man sitting in the cubicle next to me is under a window, and his printer is working fine.

Tech support: Okay Bob, let's press the control and escape keys at the same time. That brings up a task list in the middle of the screen. Now type the letter "P" to bring up the Program Manager.
Customer: What do you mean?
Tech support: "P" ... on your keyboard, Bob.

Customer:  "You've got to fix my computer. I urgently need to print a document, but the computer won't boot properly."
Tech Support: "What does it say?"
Customer: "Something about an error and non-system disk."
Tech Support: "Look at your machine. Is there a floppy inside?"
Customer: "No, but there's a sticker saying there's an Intel inside.  "I'M NOT GOING TO DO THAT!!



Tech Support: "Ok, now click your left mouse button."
Customer: (silence) "But I only have one mouse."



Tech Support: "I need you to right-click on the Open Desktop."
Customer: "Ok."
Tech Support: "Did you get a pop-up menu?"
Customer: "No."
Tech Support:
"Ok. Right click again. Do you see a pop-up menu?"
Customer: "No."
Tech Support: "Ok, sir. Can you tell me what you have done up until this point?"
Customer: "Sure, you told me to write 'click' and I wrote 'click'."



Tech Support: "What does the screen say now?"
Customer: "It says, 'Hit ENTER when ready'."
Tech Support: "Well?"
Customer: "How do I know when it's ready?"



Tech Support: "Customer Support, this is David, may I help you?"

Customer: "Hello, yes, it's me."

Tech Support: "Oh, it's me too." [chuckle]

Customer: "No, Esmie. E, s, m, i, e."

Tech Support: "Oh, sorry."



Tech Support: "Tell me, is the cursor still there?"

Customer: "No, I'm alone right now."



Tech Support: "Ok, ma'am, do you see the button on the right hand side of your mouse?"

Customer: "No, there's a printer and a phone on the right hand side of my mouse."



Tech Support: "Just call us back if there's a problem. We're open 24 hours."
Customer: "Is that Eastern time?"



That's it - Have a happy "Help Desk Free" New Year!




Marshall ABE Links


Southwest ABE - home page for Granite Falls, Jackson, Marshall, and Worthington consortiums.


Marshall ABE Bookmarks - tons of cool bookmarks - educational and non-educational


Tech Tips - Read new and old Tech Tips here.


Reading Skills for Today's Adults - new stories posted regularly


Announcements - Weekly announcements are posted here each week on Friday.



Lyon County Government Center  •  607 W. Main St.  •  Marshall, MN 56258  •  (507) 537-7046

E-Mail:Marshall Adult Education