Needham Community Council Logo

570 Hillside Avenue
Needham, MA 02494

Needham Community Council Logo

570 Hillside Avenue
Needham, MA 02494

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English Language Learning

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English Language Students

Free English language tutoring and conversation classes for adults who live or work in Needham.

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English Language Tutors

Volunteer tutors help students who are new to English: an enriching and satisfying experience.

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Current Events

Events for our ELL Students and Tutors to enrich their learning.

English Language Students

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Student Info

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Who Can Participate in the Program?
  • Adults who live or work in Needham are welcome.
  • Complete the “Sign Up Here” above.  We will contact you to match you with a tutor.
  • There is no cost – all tutoring is FREE
  • All levels of learners are welcome!
How Long do Students Meet with a Tutor?
  • We ask that students meet at least an hour weekly for at least nine months.
  • Of course you and your tutor can take vacations.
When and Where do Students and Tutors Meet?
  • Students meet weekly with tutors in the morning, afternoon, evening, or on weekends  for about an hour.
  • Both in person and on Zoom
  • Space is available at Needham Community Council either outdoors or in the building
  • At the Needham Free Library
Additional Student Resources

Try these on-line resources:  ELL Student Resources

Helpful local community resources: ELL Focused Community Resources

Contact Info

Please email the ELL Program Manager, Sheila Roberts, at
sroberts@needhamcouncil.org

Learning Opportunities

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Class Basics

All Classes listed below are held at the Needham Community Council unless otherwise noted.

To join a class, please complete a sign up and select group classes.  Our program manager, Sheila Roberts, will be in touch to help you find the class that is perfect for you.

Sign up Links:

Class sign up here

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If you have any questions, please email the ELL Program Manager, Sheila Roberts, at sroberts@needhamcouncil.org

Summer ELL at the Council

Thanks for your interest in the Summer conversational groups. These classes are filled! Please email the ELL Program Manager, Sheila Roberts, at sroberts@needhamcouncil.org for more information.

Beginner Conversation
Thursday mornings 10:00-11:00am
Maximum 10 people
Group Leader: Martha Riquier

Beginner & Intermediate Conversation
Wednesday evenings 6:30-7:30pm
Maximum 10 people
Group Leaders: Kimberly McCollum and Lyn Robertson-Hotz

Intermediate Conversation
Thursday mornings 10:30-11:30am
Group Leader: Beverly Schwartz

If you have any questions, please email the ELL Program Manager, Sheila Roberts, at sroberts@needhamcouncil.org

FALL ELL

More information coming soon. 

If you have any questions, please email the ELL Program Manager, Sheila Roberts, at sroberts@needhamcouncil.org

English Language Tutors

Tutor Info

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Tutor Training for FALL

Would you like to join our team of 80+ tutors serving the needs of Needham’s diverse English language learning community? Sign up for our new training program!

New Tutor Training
Led by a professional ELL teacher from JVS (Jewish Vocation Services), new tutors will learn about best practices for teaching adult English language learners, discuss lesson planning and where to find resources and meet fellow new tutors.

Wednesday, 6:30-8:00 pm, October 9, 16, and  23 (attendance at all three sessions is required).

Please email Program Director Sheila Roberts to sign up.

Tutor Refresher Night:
Come and join your fellow tutors to brush up on your English tutoring skills!  Led by a professional English teacher from JVS, we will use a question-and-answer format to share new ideas and solve some tricky tutoring topics!

Wednesday, 6:30-7:30 pm, November 6 (kindly register in advance).

Please email Program Director Sheila Roberts to sign up.

How do I Become a Tutor?

Being an ELL tutor is a rewarding experience and we will help you achieve this goal!  We offer new tutor training in the fall and spring and will support you when you begin working with our community of adult learners of English. If you are over 18 years old and interested in becoming a tutor, these are the program requirements:

  • Fill out the online tutor interest form (must be over 18 years old)
  • Sign up for and attend all 3 sessions of the fall or spring training
  • Complete CORI and Confidentiality forms and submit at the 1st training session

Please email Program Director Sheila Roberts with any questions. 

What Makes an Effective Tutor?

Tutors DO NOT need to know the language of their student or have teaching experience.

  • Being flexible, welcoming, and open to other cultures is essential.
  • The training workshop provides a variety of techniques for teaching without the need for translation.
  • A good ELL tutor can speak English fluently, articulate clearly, and is familiar with American culture.
  • We support tutors with resources and training.
Different Tutor Opportunities
  • Individual Tutoring
  • Conversation Groups
  • On-line or In person meetings
  • Special Events – field trips, cooking classes, knitting group
What’s the Time Commitment?
  • We ask that tutors and students participate for at least 9 months, meeting once a week.
  • Most meetings last for 1 to 1.5 hours.
When and Where do Students and Tutors Meet?
  • Students meet weekly with tutors in the morning, afternoon, evening, or on weekends  for about an hour.
  • Both in person and on Zoom
  • Many students prefer to meet virtually
  • Space is available at Needham Community Council either outdoors or in the building
  • At the Needham Free Library
What do English Language Learners Want to Learn?
  • Most learners want to improve their listening comprehension and speaking skills to communicate better with co-workers, neighbors, school and medical personnel, on the phone, etc.
  • Many need to read and write better for everyday life or employment.
  • Many students want to become more familiar with American culture.
  • Some have a specific goal in mind, such as getting a job, a driver’s license, or a GED, becoming a U.S. citizen, or passing a college entrance test.

Other Resources

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Websites Resources for Tutors

There are a number of on-line resources we recommend for tutors of all levels of students.

On-Line Resources for Tutors

Current ELL Events

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Event Information

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ELL Knitting Group & Walk & Talks

Thank you for your participation in these events! We are excited to bring these programs back in the Fall 2024.

If you have any questions, please email the ELL Program Manager, Sheila Roberts, at sroberts@needhamcouncil.org