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  1. I do not have any kind of teaching background.  Can I still be a volunteer tutor?

Of course!  Most of our students need basic, every day survival skills that we take for granted.  Our Tutor Training Workshop will help you with the skills necessary to work with an adult.  Once you complete a TTW, you are assigned to a Literacy Specialist who acts as a case manager to help you with lesson planning, troubleshooting and anything else you might need along the way! 


  1. What are the requirements to be a volunteer? 

You must be at least eighteen years of age with a high school diploma or its equivalent and have a comfortable command of the English language.  We also ask for a good faith commitment of one year to the program.  You must also be able to volunteer in Nassau County, as most volunteering is done at a library in Nassau County.


  1. I am a teacher.  Is the workshop required?

Yes.  Not only do we teach you the skills needed to work specifically with an adult, we also use the workshop as an opportunity for you to learn about us.  It is important for all of our volunteers to be on the same page. We do offer workshops specifically designed for licensed teachers that are interested in leading small group instructional classes! 


  1. I don’t speak another language.  Can I still be a volunteer tutor? 

Of course!  We only require that you speak English!  In our workshop, we teach you the skills necessary to work with an adult who does not speak English.


  1. How do I know if I should take a Basic Literacy or English Language Learner Tutor Training Workshop?

It is up to you.  However, we have a student waiting list and each neighborhood has different needs.  If you are curious as to what the need is in your neighborhood, give us a call at 516-867-3580.


  1. What happens after the workshop?

At the end of your workshop, you will be assigned to your student(s) and your Literacy Specialist.  In the workshop, we spend a lot of time preparing you for your first meeting with your student(s) so you will be prepared!  We also frequently host Roundtables to troubleshoot and give you the opportunity to see what resources we have available to you.


  1. If I take a workshop at a specific library, do I have to volunteer there?

No.  Once you sign up for a workshop, you will receive a Workshop Matching Application.  On this application, we ask you about your availability and where you are willing to travel to.  This is the information that we use to match you.


  1. How do I sign up for a workshop?

It’s easy! Simply click here and you will be directed to our Become A Volunteer page.  


  1. Literacy Nassau sure uses a lot of acronyms.  What do they all mean?

TTW: Tutor Training Workshop: A Literacy Nassau course, held up to 20 times a year throughout Nassau County that offers potential volunteers the opportunity to learn the skills necessary to work with an adult in a fun, engaging, friendly  environment.

BL: Basic Literacy: Adults who weren’t able to learn to read as children.  They are native born and either weren’t afforded the appropriate chances to be educated or had undiagnosed learning disabilities as children that prohibited them from keeping up.

ELL: English Language Learners are typically not born in the United States and need to learn English language skills for survival.

ESL/ESOL: This is a common acronym for English as a Second Language/English to Speakers of Other Languages.

ALE: Adult Literacy Education is the core of our program where we provide one-on-one tutoring to adults that read at or below a sixth grade reading level.

ONA: Office for New Americans, where we offer small classroom instruction for adults interested in learning how to become an American citizen, as well as to learn English skills.

IST: In Service Training: A great way to continue your learning process as a tutor once you have gotten to know your student.

LN: We use this abbreviation for Literacy Nassau!

SGI: Small Group Instruction

NCBC: Next Chapter Book Clubs

JID: Jot It Down Writing Club

10. How does someone become a student at Literacy Nassau?

Adults come to Literacy Nassau through referrals, usually by word of mouth from local libraries or friends.  Students use the contact us form on our website or call the office.  From here, we determine which program best suits their needs and direct them further.  We determine the amount of new students that we can take by the amount of volunteer tutors we have. 

11. Couldn’t you help more people if you used a classroom environment instead of a one-on-one approach?

Most of our students begin at a reading level of sixth grade or below.  It is for this reason that our approach is volunteer based and one-on-one, as opposed to putting students in classrooms and expecting them to succeed.  For higher level students who want to practice their English in a classroom environment, we do offer small group instruction classes that are led by certified teachers who are also volunteers. The volunteer approach is what makes us unique.  We can’t do this without you!  


12. Can I just come to the office?

While we do love visitors, it is always best to call before coming to the office.  The reason behind this is that we all spend a lot of time in the field.  Click to view a list of our staff directory.


13.  Help!  You have so many volunteering opportunities, I can't decide what's right for me.

           No worries!  This is why we have an orientation to help you decide what's right for you.  Please click here to find out about our

           volunteer orientation. You can also call to speak to our volunteer coordinator: 516-867-3580 x21.

14. I have another question!

Please feel free to e-mail any questions to our Office Administrator, at or use our Contact Us form.  Your questions will be answered as soon as possible.   Most questions will be answered within 24 hours.

Frequently Asked Questions

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