This is the second year that Tilden Elementary has participated in the Ready. Set Read! Program which is a volunteer tutoring program established with the United Way of Berks County. Selected second grade students work with a tutor afterschool on Wednesday each week in our library at Tilden Elementary. The students read with their tutor. They are given a new A to Z reader to read each week, but then they also can choose books to read from the library too. Not only do the students read to the tutors in order to practice decoding and fluency, but the students get the chance to have their tutor read to them. This is a great way for a child to listen to a fluent reading model who is not their teacher or parent, but another adult that they look up to.
During this weekly time that the students meet with their tutor, they also have the opportunity to work on word work. The students have high frequency word flashcards that they practice in different ways with their tutors. Sometimes they orally tell each other sentences using the high frequency words, other times they can sort them by word patterns. In addition white boards are available for the students to write the words too. They are also encouraged to write sentences using the words to strengthen their writing skills and the use of the vocabulary words. These are fun ways for the students to practice words without even realizing they are learning at the same time.
The Ready. Set. Read! Program has given the students a chance to strengthen their reading skills and fluency in a different way outside the school day. The students’ faces light up when they see their tutor each week. I believe that they look forward to meeting with their tutor and reading and talking about their day together. The students and tutors learn from each other and always leave looking forward to the next week.