Marshall Adult Education


September 30, 2005

Hello Everyone,
These announcements are posted on the internet.  If you have trouble reading this email or cannot use the links, you may read them on the internet.
Here are this week's announcements.
1,  Time Sheets are due in the office by noon on Monday, October 3rd.
2.  The Marshall ABE Class Schedule has been posted.  There are some changes for October - check them out here:


3.  September Student Attendance, Intakes and CASAS reports should be to Barb by Monday, October 3rd.  We've become a little lax on the CASAS testing.  Be sure it is getting done and the scores are being reported.  Thanks.  Barb


4.  The Marshall Consortium Fall Staff Meeting is on Saturday, October 8th.  An agenda has been posted on the website.  Click on the link below.




5.  Forms on the Web - Here are some step by step directions how to work with forms used by Marshall ABE.  You may be interest in using some of these computerized forms.  The directions are here:


The computerized forms are here:

(I enjoyed my time with the Granite Falls consortium teachers talking forms and techy stuff).




6.  The Office of Refuge Resettlement (ORR) has sent a letter for circulation among the refugee network regarding the Avian Flu.  Click on the link below to read the letter.


7.  Are you interested in the use of phonics in the ABE/ESL classroom?  There is a small group of teachers which is planning to do some action research (practitioner research) on the use of phonics in the classroom with literacy-level, low-literacy level, and/or low-level adult ESL learners.  If you are interested in being part of this group and doing this type of research in your classroom, please contact Andrea Poulos at, or 612-871-6350, ext 11.   


8.  States considering implementing EL Civics programs into their adult education classrooms or thinking of revamping currently existing programs can find helpful information on the Center for Adult English Language Acquisition (CAELA) Web site.  CAELA has a collection of resources that includes items:


Activities for Integrating Civics in Adult English Language Learning


Civics Education for Adult English Language Learners


Here is a link to access these as well as other Civics resources:


9.  Reminder for those who haven't registered for Follow the Dollars:  A guided tour through the state’s budget process is coming to Redwood Falls on October 12.  Information about this opportunity is on the website. Click on the link below.
10.  The latest issue of NetNews from LDA of Minnesota. The purpose of this first issue for the 2005-2006 school year is to describe LDA's grant activities available to any Minnesota ABE provider or learner at no cost.  Click on the link below to download this version of NetNews.

11.  It is with both regret for our program yet excitement for Charlie to inform you that today he gave notice that he will be leaving the Marshall ABE.   He has taken a full time position with SMAHC and will get to do his "geeky" thing plus work with the arts...........his 2 loves!    He anticipates to continue working on our website (that includes our Reading Skills for Today's Adults) and do announcements on a weekly basis.
We wish him the very best as he has taken our program to whole new level with his efforts.  We are very happy he will continue in a role for our program!
If you are aware of someone who might fill his instructor hours.............please let me know. 
Thanks,  Pat Thomas
12.  The non-confidential job postings that Job Service shares with us are posted on the ABE Website each week.  Check them out here.

13.  From the Trivia Department:  Here they are - the best food and recipe sites on the internet   13000 recipes at this site   Over 100,000 recipes at this site - (there are 2859 recipes for chicken)     Recipes and fun stuff here - they have a neat newsletter, too.    The Food Networks website.  Watch their programming and go to this website to get the recipe   This is a cool store - buy anything for the kitchen here.
14.  Thought for the week:  
To be completely honest with oneself is the very best effort a human being can make. – Sigmund Freud
15.  TECH TIP:  Improve Your Computer’s Performance – Part 1


Is your computer running sluggishly lately?  Does it need some “computer Geritol?” (Anybody remember Geritol - it contains 26 vitamins and minerals). This is the first part of a 2-part Tech Tip on how to improve your computer’s performance.  Here are the first five of ten tips - most are free – some will cost you a few bucks.


(1)  Uninstall seldom or never used programs. 

Use it or lose it – that’s my motto.  I uninstall any program I haven’t used in the last several months to a year.  The more programs on your computer, the harder your processor (CPU) has to work to keep up with everything.  To uninstall software, go to Start -> Settings -> Control Panels -> Add or Remove Programs.  Remove all the programs that you don’t need. 

Also, if you really don’t need that data anymore, delete it or back it up to a CD – get it off your hard drive.


(2)  Increase your RAM:

What’s RAM?  It’s the memory chips in your computer used to run programs and temporarily store the documents and projects you are working on.   Do you know how much RAM you have?  Right-click on My Computer and then click on Properties.  You can find out how many megabytes of RAM you have.  If you have only 64, you should upgrade to 128 or more.  If you have only 128, you should upgrade to 256 or more.  If you 256, you may want to upgrade to 512.  How much RAM is enough?  It depends what kind of computing you do. If you do a little to moderate amount of computing and you work mainly with text files (Word), 128 or 256 may be enough.  If you work with graphics, video, or play high end games, then you may need 512 or more.  You can never have too much RAM – the more you have the better your computer will run.  And best of all, RAM is pretty cheap right now.


(3)  Defrag You Hard Drive.

This simple task can really speed things up for you.  After weeks and months (and years) of use, the files on your hard drive get fragmented.  That means your hard drive has to spin excessively to open documents and save documents.  It takes longer to open or save to a fragmented hard drive.  To defrag, go to Start -> All Programs -> System Tools -> Disk Defragmenter.  You should defrag once a month.  It takes a couple hours, so do it when you have some time to spare – like at night when you’re sleeping.


(4)  Trim Your Startup Files: 

When you start your computer, there are a number of programs that automatically startup.  Some of the programs are essential – some are not essential and not needed.  You can configure your computer to not startup the non-essential programs and save a lot of system resources and memory.  Read this Tech Tip to learn how to shut off non-essential programs at start-up.

You can spend a few bucks and get a program that will help you do this task? Visit the Start-up Cop website – it’ll cost you 6 bucks to 20 bucks, depending on which option you use.,1895,2173,00.asp


(5)  Configure Your System Properties.

In Windows XP, You can adjust the Performance Options to improve your system performance.  Here’s how:

  1. Right-click on My Computer
  2. Select Properties
  3. Click on the Advance Tab
  4. Click on Settings in the Performance section

Here is a lengthy list of settings you can select of deselect.  If you deselect all of them, you will be trading a rather bland look for better performance.  If you select all of them, you will have a cool looking computer but will sacrifice some performance.  Try doing both.  Then you may want to strike up a compromise.  Here are the ones I deselect.

  • Fade or slide menus into view
  • Fade of slide ToolTips into view
  • Fade out menu items after clicking
  • Show shadows after menus
  • Slide open combo boxes
  • Slide taskbar buttons
  • Use a background image for each folder type
  • Use common tasks in the folders

If you have a new computer that has a 2.2  billion mhz processor (hey - there’s no such thing!) – OK, it you have a new, super fast computer, changing these settings may not have a lot of effect.  But for a lot of computers, you may actually notice an increase in speed and performance by doing these tweaks.


Next week – the next 5 tips to improving you computer’s performance


Have a great week!



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