Did you know the end of third grade is an important milestone for children? Up until that time, children learn to read; in fourth grade, students read to learn. That is why United Way of Berks County’s Ready.Set.READ! program helps children improve their reading and literacy skills.
The program connects trained volunteer tutors with second graders in 12 school districts. Currently, 200 volunteer tutors provide reading support to the students; more volunteers are needed, representing all backgrounds. Why volunteer? Here’s what one volunteer shared: “This is the best volunteer role, and it is such a rewarding experience for both student and tutor.”
According to Darby Wiekrykas, volunteer manager at United Way, volunteers serve an important role. “They boost the child’s reading skills; there is also a bond established between the adult and child. As part of the tutoring session, they share the time reading a book and working on related activities, and a little conversation. It is always a positive thing for kids to have another adult in their life who helps them.”
Parents credit Ready.Set.READ! with making a difference in their child’s life. “My son is much more confident in his reading. This program is beneficial to young students.”
Volunteers spend one hour a week helping second-grade students boost their reading skills. No experience is necessary – – all volunteers attend a training session; all books and supplies are provided.