Friday, October 14, 2011

The Fastest Hour

The fastest hour of my Mondays and Wednesdays is the hour between 3 and 4pm when the tutoring for the Read for Life program takes place. This hour literally feels like 5 minutes as I navigate the people of the program (volunteers, students, and parents). My role is mainly to float around the first grade room taking care of any obstacles that arise whether its finding more snacks, navigating unregistered students, interacting with concerned or annoyed parents, and filling in as needed as tutor. The first week had its share of unexpected surprises and I was ready to tackle these obstacles as presented. I really enjoy that sort of problem solving and I handle it well, which makes me feel good about my work.

For instance, the first day we had a student who was 'not ready to learn' and I was the one who had to make the phone call to their parent explaining their child was not ready to learn and needed to be picked up from the program early. When things like this happen, I am the one who then needs to watch that student waiting for the parent to arrive and making sure the student is not further disrupting the learning environment for the others. The mother was very cooperative with this and also brought her older child (who was in the program last year). The older sibling exclaimed to the younger sibling "MAN, your getting sent home! You have to behave when you are here!! You're missing out!" One of my committee members who happened to be near responded to the older sibling "that's right! You make sure to tell your sibling all about it."

Overall I'm very pleased with the start of the program. The kids are happy, the volunteers are giving lots of positive feedback, and I'm enjoying my work too. :)

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