Team Read’s one-on-one tutoring runs from October through mid May at select Kennewick elementary schools. Tutors are needed at Amistad, Eastgate, Edison, Hawthorne, Southgate and Sunset View. All volunteers are paired with first, second or third graders who are specifically selected by their teachers. Tutors use curriculum and guidelines provided by Team Read to help students catch up to the rest of their class. Students with behavior problems are not eligible for the program.
Tutoring a child does not require much time. The standard commitment is one hour, twice a week from October through mid-May. Tutors meet with the same child twice a week for a 30-minute session. Two tutors who can commit to just one session a week may be able to share a child. Tutors willing to make a greater commitment may work with up to four children a day in two-hour time blocks. Substitute tutors are also needed.
Through extra reading practice and modeling a love of reading, Team Read tutors help students learn to read at grade level. Sometimes, teachers determine that a student has reached grade level before the end of the school year! In that case, a tutor will be paired with another student.
New tutors are invited to a group orientation and training in late September. They receive additional training from their on-site coordinator at the school and via newsletters. Luncheons in November and February are special occasions for further training and sharing with fellow tutors. Tutors sign in and out at the school site, wear a name badge, and are asked to complete a tutoring log for each session. Tutors must pass a background check, and should enjoy interacting with young children. Tutors are asked to be punctual and respectful of school policies. Bilingual tutors are also needed.
Tutors who are unable to volunteer on a regular basis — but who could substitute — are important and encouraged to call and sign up. Successful tutors range from age 17 to 75 — or more. Teens take part in Team Read through a high school class, which helps them explore a career in teaching. Dedication to children and a commitment to literacy is a win-win for teachers, students and tutors.
Do you have additional questions or are you ready to make a volunteer commitment? Please call the Team Read program director at 509-222-7324.