Book Buddies tutor fifth graders

Jordan Riley helps students at Leesville Road Elementary School as a part of Book Buddies. Book Buddies has been meeting twice a week since November. (Photo Courtesy of Maggie Pollard.)Jordan Riley helps students at Leesville Road Elementary School as a part of Book Buddies. Book Buddies has been meeting twice a week since November. (Photo Courtesy of Maggie Pollard.)

If you’re looking for a new way to volunteer your time with young children, Book Buddies may be the best place to go. Book Buddies is a club that meets on Mondays and Wednesdays after school to tutor fifth graders at Leesville Road Elementary.

The club was founded by Caitlin Allison, a senior at Leesville, as a part of her Gold Award for Girl Scouts. Her goal was to help fifth graders develop their reading and writing skills before they went to middle school. She also wanted to work with kids while high schoolers could still be seen as “cool” and influential for young kids.

“[I wanted to] help the fifth graders who do not get enough individual attention in their classrooms,” said Allison.

For high schoolers, the club also offers a rewarding opportunity to work with kids and give back to the community, as well as earning service hours.

“After you go a couple of times [the elementary students] start to remember you, so then you walk in and they get excited and just seeing them happy makes me happy…These were the kids that were in our position when we were younger, and I know I definitely loved when the fifth graders would come in and read to us, so us being the high schoolers helping the fifth graders is pretty cool,” said Gabriella Imbasciani, a senior at Leesville.

After almost a full school year of helping fifth graders, the positive results of the tutoring are becoming clear.

“It definitely increases the confidence that the fifth graders show,” said Allison.

For more information on Book Buddies, or if you’d like to sign up to tutor, check out the SignUp Genius here.

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