Adult Literacy

Literacy is much more than an educational priority – it is the ultimate investment in the future.” - Irina Bokova, UNESCO

Liftoff to Literacy is Ontario City Library’s adult literacy program that provides free one-to-one tutoring for participants ages 18 years and older. Adult learners seeking to improve their literacy skills will be paired with a volunteer tutor. Learning materials are provided to help learners reach their reading goals at their own pace. Orientation and training are provided to volunteer tutors – no teaching experience necessary. Learning sessions are held virtually or in-person at times convenient for both the learner and tutor.

Did you know?

  • A higher level of literacy builds self-esteem.
  • Higher literacy levels improve the overall quality of life.
  • Adults who read more can positively impact their children’s schoolwork.
  • Adults who participate in adult literacy education experience higher rates of employment.
  • Higher levels of literacy in adults can increase voter participation and result in higher rates of citizenship among immigrants.
Need Reading Help?

“For the first time in my life, I am making learning to read a priority.” - Liftoff to Literacy participant

“With this program, I found the support I needed to help me reach my goals and succeed.” - Liftoff to Literacy participant

Welcome new learners! We are excited that you are taking the steps to accomplish your reading goals with Ontario City Library!

The Ontario City Library Adult Literacy Program, Liftoff to Literacy, provides free, confidential one-to-one tutoring in reading, writing, and comprehension in English for adults 18 years and older.  As an adult learner, you will be paired with a tutor who will help you reach your reading goals.  Learn at your own pace!  

  Adult learners should:  

  • Be 18 years old or older
  • Not be currently enrolled in traditional high school
  • Speak and understand English
  • Meet with your tutor 60-90 minutes per week 

If you would like to improve your reading with a tutor, please fill out the form below and library staff will connect with you soon!


Do you want to help?

“Watching the excitement that my learner had when describing her goals, it made me even more excited to be a part of this program.” - Tutor America M.

Would you like to make a difference in someone’s life?  Do you enjoy teaching others? Are you looking for a way to make a difference in your community? Join the Ontario City Library as a volunteer literacy tutor.  We could not provide literacy services to our adult community without the help of our dedicated volunteers!

As a tutor, you’ll help adult learners gain valuable English reading and writing skills.  No teaching experience is necessary.  Library staff will provide resources and training for volunteer tutors. 

Please review the minimum qualifications and guidelines for volunteer tutors:

  • Must be 18 years of age or older.  
  • Have earned a high school diploma or equivalent.  
  • Complete tutor training and volunteer orientation.   
  • Complete and pass a free background check from the City of Ontario. 
  • Commit to at least 6 months of tutoring.  
  • Commit to at least (1) 60–90-minute tutoring session per week with an adult learner, scheduled at times convenient for both the learner and tutor.

Liftoff to Literacy is not recommended for those with a volunteering deadline.  The Ontario City Library does not accept court-assigned volunteers.

Please fill out the form below and library staff will connect with you soon!  



Resources for Learners

In addition to being paired with a learner, Liftoff to Literacy seeks to provide additional learning paths for our learners.  Below are some helpful websites to help you get started on your learning journey. 

Library Online Resources

The library subscribes to numerous databases that are free to access to library patrons.  Visit the library’s Online Resources page to find information on the databases available to learners.  An Ontario City Library card may be required to access some databases.

  • LearningExpress Library: LearningExpress Library features nearly 1,000 online tutorials, practice tests, and eBooks to help patrons of all ages. It offers job search and workplace skills improvement, skill building in reading, writing, math, and basic science, career certification and licensure exam prep, college and grad school entrance test prep, GED® test prep, and more. Ontario City Library card required.
  • Brainfuse Help Now!  Have your homework needs met with Brainfuse's HelpNow, a comprehensive suite of services designed to accommodate a range of homework needs, including live, one-to-one homework help, live California-aligned skills building, test preparation, and comprehensive writing assistance. Resources available for elementary age to adults. Ontario City Library card required.
  • LinkedIn Learning:  Access thousands of video-based courses taught by notable educators in seven different languages. Topics range from business, education, computer, software, graphic design, music, photography and more! Ontario City Library card required.
  • Duolingo: Duolingo offers free games and video-based learning for 22 of the world’s most popular languages. Download the Duolingo app to make on-the-go language learning quick and easy. All users need to create their own free access account.
  • Coursera: Coursera is a world-class learning platform that provides a transformative learning experience that will empower you to thrive at your job today and drive positive change in your career development. It offers more than 3,000 cutting-edge courses, taught by top instructors from 190 of the world's leading universities and organizations. Work at your own pace with bite-sized sessions and a self-paced learning model to earn university-accredited certifications in industry-vetted disciplines. This resource is available thanks to funding provided by the State of California, administered by the California State Library.
  • Northstar Digital Literacy: Northstar Digital Literacy defines basic skills needed to perform tasks on computers and online. Online, self-guided modules assess your ability to perform tasks based on these skills. Included are modules in three main areas Essential computer Skills (basics for computers, internet, email, Windows OS, Mac OS), Essential Software Skills (Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Google Docs), and Using Technology in Daily Life (social media, information literacy, career search, etc.). This resource is available thanks to funding provided by the State of California, administered by the California State Library.       


Welcome to the expanded cloudLibrary service where you have free access to over 60,000 eBook and eAudiobook titles with your Ontario City Library card.  Place holds, suggest titles, and no late fees!  Ontario City Library card required.

  • Find Quick & Easy Reads (hi-lo readers): books that are high in concept for older readers, but at a lower reading level.
  • Find Adult Education help through GED books, grammar, vocabulary and comprehension resources. 

News For You

This website offers easy-to-read news stories that can help you learn to read, write, speak, and understand the English language.  The library has a subscription for Liftoff to Literacy participants.  For more information, call (909) 395-2205 or email


Resources for Tutors

Liftoff to Literacy seeks to provide tutoring resources needed by our volunteers to assist with helping learners upgrade their skills and reach their reading goals. 

Active Ontario City Library Tutors

We appreciate your willingness to participate in our literacy program.  Thank you for being a tutor with the Ontario City Library. 

Current tutors in Liftoff to literacy are required to input their volunteering hours by the last day of each month in Better Impact. Contact literacy staff at for more information on Better Impact, including your login information and directions. 

Please track and report your hours in 3 categories: prep hours, tutoring hours, and other hours. Select these activities in Better Impact when inputting your hours.

Prep hours are the time you spend preparing for your lessons with your learner.

Tutoring hours are the time you spend with your learner during tutoring sessions.

Other hours are the time you spend on literacy related activities that is not prep or tutoring hours. For example, attending a webinar or volunteering at a library event to promote the literacy program. 

Login to Better Impact here


Tutor Resources:

Ontario City Library’s Online Resources

California Library Literacy Services: Includes tutor training videos

International Literacy Association: Lesson plans, reading lists, blog & more

ProLiteracy Education Network: Articles, videos & more

United States Department of Education: Office of Career, Technical & Adult Education

United States Citizenship and Immigration Services: Educational products, lesson plans, activities, naturalization information & supplemental resources links.


Downloadable Files

Tutor Trainings and Events

Liftoff to Literacy provides tutor training for volunteer tutors. Tutor trainings are scheduled regularly as needed. Volunteers must complete all of tutor training, volunteer orientation, and complete and pass a free background check with City of Ontario.    

Additionally, Liftoff to Literacy provides on-going training at quarterly tutor meet-ups.  Tutors can ask questions, receive training, and network with other tutors in the program. 

For more information on Tutor Training and Tutor Meet-ups, call (909) 395-2205 or email


Literacy Classroom


The adult literacy classroom is available for use by Liftoff to Literacy participants.  For more information on the literacy classroom or to reserve the room, call (909) 395-2205 or email


Liftoff to Literacy Classroom Resources List

The adult literacy classroom and its resources are available to participants of the Liftoff to Literacy program at the Ontario City Library.


Literacy Library Book Collection:

Picture books

Easy readers

Middle readers

Graphic novels (comics)

Children’s fiction

Quick and easy reads

Adult and young adult fiction

Education for adults

  • GED books
  • GED flashcards

Hi-low readers

Non-fiction (all ages)

Audio CD books

E-books (on website)



Learning Resources

Educational support materials, e.g., dictionaries, educational videos, and worksheets.


Learning workbooks

Instructional workbooks

Reading and spelling workbooks


Educational Games:

Educational board games

Scrabble game board

Sight word games

Jenga with sight words and sentences

Word puzzles


Supplemental Resources: