Many educators see that there is a need to provide tutors to children who fall behind in their reading level. As Tina Rosenberg of The New York Times says, “People disagree, quite strenuously, on the best curriculum for teaching children to read. But all participants in the reading wars agree on some other things: Early reading is crucial. . .and any reading curriculum works better if children who are struggling get the chance to work, one on one, with a tutor.”
Rosenberg’s article in The New York Times features two programs, Minnesota Reading Corps and Reading Partners, that are designed to help children who fall behind in their reading. Minnesota Reading Corps proved most beneficial for kindergarten students, who “learned twice as many letter sounds in 16 weeks as children in a control group.” Reading Partners proved to be best in assisting 2nd to 5th graders.
One reason these programs are so effective is the unique relationship between student and tutor. “Children need to have that one person they can turn to, to say ‘I don’t understand’,” says Kristina Beecher. Beecher is the principals of Public School 3 in Bedford-Stuyvesant, a neighborhood of Brooklyn, New York City. Because of this relationship, Rosenberg says, absences matter and have an impact on the child’s learning progress. While there are certainly things to improve upon, Minnesota should be proud to have one of the first programs like this.
Are you interested in becoming part of the Minnesota Reading Corps? Check out our previous post, Reading and Math Tutors Needed!
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