September 2021 Newsletter

Have a happy Labor Day!

From the Director’s Corner

Dear friends,

Each September as the summer winds down, we recognize Labor Day, a holiday first celebrated in 1882. That year, on the fifth of September, the Knights of Labor held the first Labor Day parade in New York City. The Knights then passed a resolution to celebrate workers’ labor every year on the first Monday of September. In 1894, Congress passed a law recognizing Labor Day as a federal holiday. It is a day to “lay down our tools” and celebrate all of the hard work people do every day across this nation.

As the school year begins, Covid continues to be a serious threat to the community. That is why we require mask-wearing during tutoring sessions. The science is clear. Wearing a mask helps to prevent the virus from spreading. More importantly, however, everyone should get vaccinated. I would like to thank those who are fully vaccinated.

This fall, we are excited to begin a monthly discussion series for our volunteers, adult students, and parents. These gatherings will not only offer useful information on a variety of topics but will also provide us with the opportunity to socialize and get to know one another better. Look for an email about this new series in the near future.

Our new Adult Literacy Program at Patrick’s Mobile Home is off to a great start. You can read about ALP on page 3 and meet one of our tutors.

We are thrilled to announce that Palmetto Literacy Council has received two grants from the Waccamaw Community Foundation. This funding will help us to continue our mission to improve the literacy rate in Horry County. A big thank you to Bobbie Lipman for facilitating these grants.

In October, Palmetto Literacy Council will host the first in a series of quarterly programs “Authors in Support of Literacy” featuring Jonathan Haupt. You can read a full description of this program on page 6.

September is a beautiful month. Enjoy the weather and please stay safe.

How You Can Support PLC

Individual membership: $25/year (Pays for materials for one student)
Business membership: $50/year (Pays for materials for two students)

Your business card will be featured in the newsletter and on our website Donate through

What’s in the news?

When ordering from, please consider designating Palmetto Literacy Council as the charity of your choice. Amazon does not charge you extra and sends us a percentage of their profit on the items to us. Please sign up and make your Amazon purchases through to help us help our community.

PLC Book Lovers Book Club

Do you enjoy reading and discussing books with other bibliophiles? Then you might like to join the PLC Book Lovers Book Club. Patricia D’Ascoli will be organizing this monthly book club and would love to hear from those who are interested. Proposed format: Each month the group will meet in one of the member’s homes. The member who is hosting that month will choose the book to read. Book clubs are a fun way to share your reading experiences with others! Tentative start date September.

Volunteers Liasons

Polly Putorti is our Conway area liaison and Linda Murphy is our Socastee area liaison. Contact Patricia [email protected]


Fill in the graphic organizer during reading or after reading.

Follow these steps: List the characters, setting, and conflict in the Beginning box.

Write two or three important events that show how the main character deals with the conflict in the Rising Action box.

Identify the moment when the main character makes an important decision that leads to the story climax. Describe the event in the Turning Point box.

Write what happens as a result of the turning point in the Falling Action box.

Write how the story turns out in the Ending box.

(In a very short story, the falling action and ending are sometimes the same).

Rack Cards

Does your library have our cardstock two-sided rack cards? If not, please let Dodi know asap. She would love to get these out everywhere. If you know of a business that would display our lovely rack cards, please contact Dodi. Let’s get our information out to the community in a variety of ways!

PLC’s New Adult Literacy Program

Presented by Preston McKeever-Floyd

For twenty years, Barb Patrick has dreamed of a way to provide others with an opportunity to better their lives. Barb, who is co-owner of Patrick’s Mobile Home Park in Myrtle Beach, has known that the way to do this is by helping residents in her community improve their English language skills. But she didn’t know how to make that happen.

Her dream has now come true with the help of Palmetto Literacy Council.

In August, PLC initiated the Patrick Mobile Home Park Adult Literacy Program (ALP). Barb noted that when she first presented it to the residents, they were enthusiastic and interested in learning more about the program. During an open house held at the park, ten people signed up to participate. Six students are now being tutored in the program, and two will be paired with tutors soon. Two additional students are waiting for tutors.

Samih Baalbaki, a retired legal consultant and experienced tutor, currently works with three students in the ALP. For the past nine years, Samih has tutored elementary school children through several programs including Reading Buddies and Freedom Readers. When the opportunity to tutor for Palmetto Literacy Council presented itself, he was excited to take on the challenge of working with adults to help them improve their English language skills.

Samih, who is multilingual, speaks Spanish, and this has been a tremendous asset in working with his students. Two of his students are women (one works in construction and the other in housekeeping). A third student is a 16-year- old girl who is in the tenth grade. Tutoring is a challenge, said Samih, because the students are at different levels in their English skills.

Such levels range from having no exposure to the language to being able to understand but not write in English.

Group instruction works well in this case because it invites interaction Samih said. He focuses on helping the students identify words and learn basic English language conventions.

“We use the book as a catalyst for discussion. I try to make the session as varied as possible,” Samih said. After reading, students write vocabulary words and work on making sentences from the words. Samih invites the students to tell stories about what they have read.

Although he does not assign homework, Samih encourages them to read in-between sessions but understands that they might not always have time to focus on this.

“I respect and admire the fact that they want to learn. It’s not easy for them,” Samih said. “Learning a language is a big investment.”

Samih, who also teaches classes through OLLI (Osher Lifelong Learning Institutes), said that he is impressed with the materials provided by PLC, noting that they are easy to utilize and adapt. He believes that even those without tutoring experience or Spanish skills will find that the materials are self-explanatory and user-friendly.

Barb is pleased that the program has gotten off to a great start and hopes that more residents will decide to enroll.

“People are loving it. I think it’s a wonderful thing that we have been able to do,” she said.

Anyone who is interested in learning more about tutoring in the Adult Literacy Program at Patrick’s Mobile Home Park, please contact Dodi Hodges at [email protected]

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To improve the literacy of youth and adults in our community by teaching/tutoring basic literacy skills for those who struggle with reading, writing and/or math.


CHAIR: Dodi Hodges: [email protected]
VICE CHAIR: Shawna Roessler [email protected]
TREASURER: Maria Denney [email protected]
SECRETARY: Preston McKever-Floyd [email protected]


FUNDRAISING CO-CHAIRS: Patricia D’Ascoli [email protected], Stephanie Southworth [email protected]
TRAINING COORDINATOR: Carla Taylor [email protected]

MAILING ADDRESS: 1229 38TH Avenue North, #130 Myrtle Beach, SC 29577
PHYSICAL ADDRESS: 1010 5th Avenue North Ext., Suite 101I Surfside Beach, SC 29575


OFFICE PHONE: 843-945-9278
OFFICE EMAIL: [email protected]

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