ALTA welcomes volunteers to train as tutors in the free ALTA classes or as guides for ALTA Reading Circles. As an ALTA tutor you will be responsible for completing 150 hours of ALTA instruction with a group of 6-10 students over the age of 16. This requires a commitment of 2 hours’ voluntary teaching, twice a week, for at least one academic year.

ALTA gives tutors an opportunity to choose a venue, but at the same time expects tutors to be willing to teach where they are needed. ALTA provides all teaching materials for the class, but teachers buy their 3-book tutor set of the ALTA Adult Workbook at the discounted price of $25 (reg. $60).

ALTA offers a free training course for volunteer tutors. This course is open only to those who can make a commitment to teach for at least one academic year. Education has failed to meet the needs of our adult students at least once already. They have been brave enough to try again in the face of past failure and the distress this brings. If after training you do not go to class at all or go irregularly, the students will be without a teacher and will be discouraged. You will be responsible for closing the door to their future a SECOND TIME.

Becoming a tutor

  • Call ALTA for an interview (624 2582) or complete this form. We interview interested volunteers, who have a passing grade in CSEC English, between October and February of the following year.
  • When you come for your interview, complete our application form for the 6-day ALTA Tutor Training course conducted in April-May.
  • Observe 8 ALTA classes to find out more about ALTA teaching.
  • Buy the course handbook ($60) and deposit $100 with ALTA. This $100 deposit will be returned when you complete your 150 hrs. voluntary teaching.

Tutor Training Course

As literacy is a complex skill and many ALTA students have a learning disability, all ALTA volunteers must do the initial 6-day training and if continuing for another academic year, they return annually for a one-day refresher.

The tutor training course is six full days from 8 am – 4 pm, one day per week for six weeks, and takes place between April and May. Three courses are offered, each limited to 36 participants. Course participants complete written, graded assignments between course days. After training, new tutors are assigned to an ALTA class, based on their preferences. Upon completion of 150 hours of volunteer teaching, the tutor receives a graded certificate.

The course gives an understanding of the skills involved in reading and writing, and how to effectively teach these to adult and teen students at differing literacy levels. The course includes:

  • A study of the characteristics of adults as learners.
  • A comparative study of Standard English and Caribbean Creole English.
  • Analysis of reading, writing and spelling processes.
  • Instruction in current teaching methods and techniques used in adult literacy.
  • Assessment and planning a learning programme for mixed-ability groups.
  • Practical experience using the ALTA Adult Workbook and creating teaching aids suited to the needs of the students.

Participants Comments

“Lovely – intense but informative.”
“This was a great eye-opener for me.”
“I have been made aware of many things I took for granted.”
“Excellent course – good time management, facilitators were well prepared and professional.”
“I thoroughly enjoyed the course. It has extended the horizon of my thoughts.”
“This has been a tremendous experience. I look forward to putting all I have learnt into practice.”
“The ALTA programme is very effective, encouraging and motivating. Everything is done with love.”
“The ALTA trainers couldn’t have conducted a better programme than this one.”
“I think that this method should be introduced to primary schools, if not all of it, then certainly some parts.”
“You are filling an urgent need. May you have the support to sustain and improve the programme.”