Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Students learn from each other in reading program

A program is not only benefiting young students within the Brush School District, but several high school students as well.

"Its fun to read to the children so you feel like you teach them something," stated Jose Canamar, with Lucy Torrez adding, "Reading to children is fun because it helps you to become a role model for them. As they see you doing well, they will do well."

Now in its sixth year, freshmen and sophomore students in Laura Krob's Academic Literacy Class have been spending time reading to and with students at Thomson Primary School. "It is fun and you can learn something from them," Matthew Jarrell said of the program.

Currently, 55 students from Brush High School, including those enrolled in English as a Second Language classes, walk to the primary school once a week to share reading experiences with those in Head Start, kindergarten and second grade.

Although students are in the process of winding up the school year, the program began mid-way of the school year, Krob stated. "They start reading with partners in the second quarter after having been taught the reading process," the teacher of approximately 20 years explained.

Providing assistance with the program are several teachers, she added, including literacy coach Amy Ely, along with school officials and principals who match their younger students with high school participants.

According to Krob, the reading teams are paired for the entire length of the program, with some high schools students having two younger readers due to numbers.

While Amanda Alfaro has learned responsibility from participating in the program, Mario Diaz commented, "It makes you feel good because you're showing another kid to read."

Additionally, Edwin Barrandey feels, "Reading to children improves their reading and a child read to at a small age is more likely to do better when he or she is older."

For Juan Piceno, the program "makes me a better reader and I learn more words from the kid books," with Adrian Rocha noting, "It gives me a boost of confidence when they pay attention and get into the books."

Bianca Nava has found that "Reading to children is fun. You learn new things about things you thought you already knew. You meet new kids," while RaeAnna Krehymeyer has found, "You can learn while you're teaching someone else."

If there is one thing the older students have found through the program, it is, "You have to be very patient and you have to get the kids interested in the story before you read it," Rhiannon Steib explained.

Added Nattalie Weaver, "At points it can be difficult to get them to pay attention and listen, but at the end it's very rewarding."

And although Jovanny Valles feels, "It's alright, but sometimes it gets hard," Stephanie Garcia has found that, "I like to read to kids at Thomson. They are really good listeners."



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