Have a Heart4Schools? Consider becoming a sight word tutor for second grade students this coming school year! Heart4Schools Champions Brenda Richards and Melanie Mingay will host an ARISE2Read Interest Meeting this Sunday, May 19 from 3:00-4:30pm in Room C122. Kim Smith volunteered this past school year, and shares her experiences below.
What led you to learn more about the ARISE2Read program, and how long have you been involved?
I signed up to volunteer for ministry to schools at a missions fair over a year ago. Last September, I saw online or in the bulletin that there was a training session for working with people in poverty. I attended and heard about several ministries, including ARISE2Read and Hunter’s Way. My interest in ARISE2Read comes from my love for kids, I guess. I am not a trained teacher but I homeschooled my boys, worked briefly in the Weekday program at my previous church, and have taught children’s Sunday school and GAs for years. You definitely do not have to be a teacher to do this program. It is very simple. ARISE2Read training took about an hour, where we learned a simple procedure for teaching children high-frequency sight words using games and repetition.
Briefly describe your weekly routine as a tutor, including time commitment.
I went to Conder Elementary twice a week on Tuesdays and Thursdays, but some volunteers were only able to go once a week. First, we checked in at the front desk of the school to get a visitor’s pass. Then we gathered our student’s file and a box with teaching materials before getting our student from his or her classroom. We took the students to the cafeteria to work with them. The tutoring session only lasted 30 minutes, but I usually arrived 10-15 minutes beforehand. It took a few minutes to get the student back to his classroom and document his progress. Altogether, I would say it took about an hour for each tutoring session. Each student had a file with a list of words on which he should work, and we documented the words he mastered at the end of each session. Melanie Mingay and Brenda Richards kept boxes of learning supplies and games stocked for us, and also provided books we could use to read with the children.
What are some of the most challenging and rewarding parts of tutoring?
There were some challenges. Some students were easier to work with than others. Some students had attention span problems, and some spoke English as a second language. Even so, I think having our individual attention even for such a short time was good for them. It was rewarding for us, too, to see them make progress.
How many students have you tutored so far, and what kind of progress have they made?
I worked with the same student all year. He made good progress and mastered almost 200 sight words! The most challenging part of the year for me was that my time with my student seemed too short. His teacher was very appreciative of our efforts, and I think the whole school really appreciated us being there and knowing they had our support.
Why should someone consider becoming an ARISE2Read tutor?
If you enjoy watching kids learn and grow, I think you would enjoy this ministry. Please consider learning more about this rewarding opportunity!
ARISE2Read Interest Meeting
This Sunday, May 19 | 3:00-4:30pm | C122