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Leading adult education through support for and the effective application of technology.

Teacher Digest

Digest #118
March 2020


Still Time to Nominate a Deserving Student for the Adult Education Students Succeed Program

The nomination period for the 2020 Adult Education Students Succeed Program is open.

Doing Our Own Digital Learning

There are great uses of technology in education all over the country (and the world), but sometimes in our corner of the universe we feel frustration, overwhelm, and confusion when it comes to getting started with and sustaining technology use in the classroom.

The Power of Graphic Organizers

As educators, we are always looking for ways that students can make better sense of the information we provide them in our lessons. Note-taking is one way of doing this, but we have a lot of other tools at our disposal that students can use (and we can use to organize our lessons).

Separating the Real from the Fake (News)

As we continue through election season, nominating conventions, and televised debates, and complete our Census forms in a few months, this year promises to be jam-packed with news that screams for our attention.

Keeping Everyone Safe on the Internet

February 11 was Safer Internet Day, a worldwide recognition of the need to actively safeguard children and adults when they spend time on the Internet. Safer Internet Day is a good reminder of the continuous need to educate everyone on staying safe online, protecting personal data, and acting as good netizens.

Teaching With Technology banner

Are you looking for a way to integrate technology in your classes? Visit Teaching with Technology on the OTAN website and start searching for ESL, ABE, ASE, and even CTE lesson ideas today!

Web-Based Class Activities


Developing Reading Skills for Healthcare Workers
by Susan Coulter

Reading Skills for Healthcare Workers is a free online literacy curriculum based on CNA and general healthcare content. There are over 200 reading selections between grade levels 4.5 and 8.5, and they are focused on developing academic and content vocabulary.


Improve Student Reading Comprehension, Vocabulary, and Background Knowledge with ReadWorks
by Susan Coulter

Readworks is a free, non-profit site focused on improving teacher effectiveness and student achievement in reading comprehension by providing free standards-aligned content, curriculum, and tools based on the highest quality cognitive scientific research on how to learn to read.

Spotlight On...

Web-based Class Activities!

Web-based class activities are monthly technology-based activities organized around instructional themes or topics and edtech tools, with specific ideas on how to get started and how to use in the classroom. As a reminder, these are accessed on the OTAN website under the Resources tab, or you can start on the Web-based Class Activities webpage.

This year, in addition to the February and March articles listed above, we have published articles on the following topics:

We hope that you will find these articles useful and we encourage you to try out some of the resources included in this year's articles. And please contact OTAN for your technology training needs at any time this year! Email us at or call us at 916-228-2580.


Date/Time Event Location
Fri, Mar 6
7:30 AM - 4:10 PM
Sat, Mar 7
8:00 AM - 3:00 PM
Technology and Distance Learning Symposium 2020 (TDLS) Charles A. Jones Career & Education Center
TDLS Website
Mon, Mar 9
5:30 PM - 8:30 PM
Google Forms and Quizzes Hacienda La Puente
Dibble Campus
Tue, Mar 10
8:30 AM - 11:45 AM
Google Forms and Quizzes Hacienda La Puente
Dibble Campus
Fri, Mar 13
1:00 PM - 2:00 PM
OTAN Tech Talks - Video Messaging with Loom Online - Zoom
Fri, Mar 27
1:00 PM - 4:00 PM
Teaching Vocabulary with Technology Saddleback Adult Education
Serra High School
Fri, Apr 10
1:00 PM - 2:00 PM
OTAN Tech Talks - Effective Cell Phone Usage in the Classroom Online - Zoom
Mon, Apr 13
8:30 AM - 11:30 AM
Moodle: Create a Course Web Site Charles A. Jones Career and Education Center
Mon, Apr 13
12:30 PM - 3:30 PM
Social Media for Adult Education Charles A. Jones Career and Education Center
Thu, Apr 16
1:00 PM - 2:30 PM
Gamify Your Classroom With Online Tools Online - Zoom
Fri, Apr 17
12:45 PM - 3:45 PM
Google Tools, Apps, and Drive North Valley Occupational Center

OTAN training events are OPEN to Adult Education staff.
★ = CLOSED, In-Service Training


Did you know OTAN provides FREE professional development workshops related to technology for Adult Educators?

Think about scheduling Professional Development for this 2019-2020 school year. With a wide-variety of technology topics in their arsenal, OTAN training staff will go to any WIOA-funded adult education program in CA that has a computer lab or devices connected to the Internet.

All of OTAN's workshops are provided at no-cost!
Each three-hour session is hands-on - everyone will learn new skills related to technology or using technology that they can use in their adult education class or program. And all of OTAN's face-to-face workshops can be tailored to fit the needs of the requesting program. Select the link to see a list of the current face-to-face workshops and, remember, if you don't see a workshop that "floats your boat" contact OTAN - we'll create what you and your staff need!

OTAN's Face-to-Face Workshops

OTAN also offers short, online workshops to meet the demands of busy adult educators. Click on the link to see our list of online workshops and webinars: Online Workshops & Webinars

All of OTAN workshops are free! Read more about OTAN Training and select Face-to-Face or Online workshops options to view complete workshop lists including descriptions and prerequisites.

Need more information? Contact OTAN training staff anytime by phone or email at 916-228-2580 and

To view workshops already scheduled, visit the California Adult Education Professional Development Calendar and search for workshops sponsored by OTAN. Don't miss any!

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OTAN activities are funded by contract CN220124 from the Adult Education Office, in the Career & College Transition Division, California Department of Education, with funds provided through Federal P.L., 105-220, Section 223. However, OTAN content does not necessarily reflect the position of that department or the U.S. Department of Education.