Somebuddy to Read With

10.31.2011As a member of the Early Childhood organization, also known as UDAYC, we are offered different opportunities for volunteering. I decided to participate in this one program known as Reading Buddies. Reading Buddies is a program that takes place at Edison Elementary school, which is about a ten minute drive from UD, which isn’t bad at all. At Edison, each volunteer is assigned a “buddy” that they work on reading skills with for about forty five minutes. This was a perfect opportunity for me, because it is every Monday, and I do not have classes on Mondays. I signed up for the session that works with third graders. As a future teacher, this program is great for me to get involved with, because it opens your eyes to other learning experiences. For instance, Edison is a school where 98% of the children are African American and are in poverty. They receive all of their meals for free and are under the majority of benchmarks for their learning. For instance, some of them that are in third grade still do not know what sounds certain letters create. This is a very different experience for me, because in all of my school experiences, the majority of students were white and middle class at minimum. Also, I personally feel that reading is a very important part of learning for a child. Since many of these families are in poverty, they do not have books to read at their homes, or their parents do not have enough time to read to their child. This is also difficult for me to be able to relate to, because as a child my parents read to me every night before I would go to bed and we have a ton of books in my house. In addition, it is a fact that prisons are beginning to look at how many children cannot read, so that they can begin to predict how many prison cells will be needed in the future. This fact angers me, but in a way it is somewhat true. If a person is not educated, there is a higher chance that they will eventually find trouble. Thus, I think this program is really great and I hope that it will improve a lot of these children’s’ reading skills as well as encourage them to find a love for reading. Plus, my buddy is adorable and they are always excited to see you from week to week. I just love doing things that make children happy as well as helping to better the community. And all it takes is forty five minutes out of my day, to help change a child’s future and that’s why I am becoming a teacher.