Voices Institute

Empowering Young People to Lift Their Voices
to Advocate for a More Compassionate, Just,
and Free Country and World!


Sam Cooke sings "A Change Is Gonna Come!" —one of most inspirational songs of the civil rights movement.

Critical Language and Literacy Skills

Lift Every Voice seeks in Part 2: Critical Language and Literacy Skills to help young people to be able to critically assess articles, videos, and social media related to the social and ecological topics we have chosen to focus on. Building on this critical awareness, young people then learn the language and literacy skills they need to be able to tell their stories and deliver compelling speeches advocating for solutions to important social and ecological problems.

1. Lift Every Voice: Three Parts

As mentioned before, Lift Every Voice is organized into three Parts: (1) Democratic Values, Skills, and Knowledge; (2) Critical Language and Literacy Skills; and (3) Social and Ecological Problems. Below we will give a brief introduction to Part 2: Critical Language and Literacy Skills.

2. Critical Language and Literacy Skills: Four Components

The second part, Critical Language and Literacy Skills, is organized into four components: (1) Oral language skills; (2) Writing skills; (3) Reading comprehension strategies and skills; and (4) Critical thinking skills.

3. An Overview of Critical Language and Literacy Skills

Below you can scroll down this Sway presentation of an overview of Critical Language and Literacy Skills. The scroll bar is on the top right. You can also expand the screen and share, download, or embed this presentation as well.

4. Critical Language and Literacy Resources

See below for some visual images of these four components and their primary objectives.

1. Oral Language Skills: Tell Stories and Deliver Speeches

2. Reading Comprehension Strategies and Skills: Comprehend Non-fiction Texts and Proposals

3. Writing Skills: Write Persuasive Speeches

4. Critical Thinking Skills: Evaluate, Question, Problem Solve

5. Critical Language and Literacy Minicourses

Click on the minicourses below to learn more about how to explore these language and literacy skills in greater depth. Click on "Select category" and then on "Critical Language and Literacy Courses".  Check the short descriptions below to see when these courses will be viewable and when you can enroll for them.

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