The Shelton Trifecta of Resources Inspiring the Success of English Learners

Have you ever thought about how intimidating it can be to learn English? For some students, it can be very nerve-racking, especially for those who don’t speak English as their first language.

Shelton is fortunate to have some wonderful and inspiring teachers who serve as mentors for English learners.  Project ExcEL, however, uses a mix of one-on-one tutoring sessions and activities that make learning English easy and fun.

With their help and these friendly programs, students are successful in mastering English, academics, and after school activities.  These programs also get students excited about reading and speaking the English language.  Inspiring educators and volunteers from the Plumb Memorial Library, Shelton Public Schools, and the Boys and Girls Club of Shelton are spear-heading these amazing efforts.

Plumb Memorial Library’s Literacy Educator, Ms. Maura Gualtiere’s passion for reading and learning resonates so deeply, it rubs off on those she helps.  Her dynamic teaching methods help children and young adults learn English and other subjects as they grow and succeed.  She conducts a variety of activities and book clubs for different age groups ranging from infants to 13 year-olds.

One of her newest programs – all of which are free and open to the public – is the Pay It Forward Book Club, created to promote goodwill and kindness. Starting on Wednesday, May 24th , the club will meet every month until August, July excluded. The first book on the reading agenda is Wonder by R.J. Palacio.

The Boys and Girls Club of Shelton, another partner organization of Project ExcEL, holds a variety of events that bring students and families together. One special event held is the Carnival (Link: – a night of family fun open now until May 21st on weekdays, 6pm-11pm and weekends 1pm-11pm. Another is the “DOC” Bednar Memorial Day Pancake Breakfast taking place at the end of May.

Victoria White, lead Project ExcEL partner in Shelton Public Schools has put together a comprehensive system of programs which assess the amount of attention and help students need after they have taken the LAS Links exam, the test which measures English proficiency.

According to Ms. White, a particularly outstanding 1st grade Venezuelan student learned English exponentially despite recently migrating to America. Project ExcEL and Ms. White also help to facilitate after-school teacher meetings and hold professional learning sessions for teachers to hone their skills.

ExcEL has helped to develop great resources for teachers and English learners in the Shelton area.  These resources give kids and their families a shoulder to lean on.  Project ExcEL strives to support students every step of the way.

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