NALA National Forum for Adult Literacy Tutors 2017

Saturday 28th January

I was fortunate enough to be able to attend the NALA conference in the Ashling Hotel last Saturday. It was my first time attending the conference and I was very impressed with all of the speakers, especially Maggie O’Sullivan Graham and Paula Tiller. They did a great presentation on “The Seven Habits Tree”. I will certainly be purchasing “The Seven Habits of Highly Effective Teenagers” which is available through the Book Depository.

I attended the “Cook it” workshop which was presented by Dr. Kate Cassidy, Health Promotion Office and Deirdre Howling, Senior Community Dietitian with the HSE South. The purpose of this workshop was to explore fun, innovative ways of delivering community nutrition. The book they were promoting was called “Cook it”.  I was amazed by the amount of sugar that we consume on a daily basis. Can you believe that one can of Club Orange has fifteen spoons of sugar in it? It is water all the way for me from now on. Each cube of sugar represented a spoonful. They used the powerful imagery of sugar cubes to get their message across. This could be incorporated into a numeracy class with highly effective learning outcomes.

Dr. Cassidy spoke of building on the positive. Her theory was, instead of telling us not to consume more sugar, she instead suggested that we increase our intake of fruit and vegetables. Therefore, we should be looking for “enablers” rather than “barriers” to assist in leading healthier lives.

I came away from the Forum more enlightened and with a more positive attitude to life. I can’t wait to see what NALA has planned for next year’s workshops. Well done to all involved. It was worth the three hour trip from Kerry to Dublin.

Philomena O’Connor
Killarney ABE Centre