By Stacy English
Edgemont Elementary Teacher
A group of community members made an incredible impact on second-grade students’ lives last school year.
At Edgemont Elementary, a Buddy Reading Program had volunteers visiting the school and reading one-on-one with students in my class. For one hour each week, volunteers read with students in the media center and played phonics games.
Connor, a former second grader, explained in his writing, “I know my buddy really cared about me because she took her time with me. I loved the phonics games and just reading with my buddy was my favorite.”
In September of 2016, only 57% of students in the Buddy Reading Program stated that they enjoyed reading on a reading interest survey. As determined by the same survey given last June, that number grew to 96%.
Student Makenzie wrote, “I loved the reading games and goodies for the holidays! We are very lucky to have them take time off work to read with us. I just want 10 more minutes to read with my buddy. Please!”
Volunteers have noted that the some of the most valuable parts of Buddy Reading include: “seeing the joy in their faces when their self-confidence grows” (volunteer Tracy Nota), “the kids realizing that adults enjoy listening to them read and that reading for enjoyment and learning is so important” (volunteer Amy Nemeth), and the positive attention and feedback from adults that students respect and do not always get at home. “They [students] gave back to me by being so loving! It’s a wonderful program and I’m proud to be able to participate in it!” stated volunteer Vicky Moore.
If you are interested in volunteering this school year, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or (734) 697-8002. The Buddy Reading Program will begin the first week of October. If enough volunteers are available, we would also like to create a Math Buddies Program. This program would not be possible without the support of amazing volunteers. Edgemont would like to recognize last year’s hardworking group: Ashley Brice, Carol Greig, Kimbria James, Chelsey Kiefer, Leanna Lingenfelter, Claire Medley, Vicky Moore, Amy Nemeth, Tracy Nota, Heather Templeton, Sandy Ward, and Cameron Wesley. We are forever grateful for their service to our future leaders!
By Stacy English