WUFT News

Volunteers help students with reading, comprehension skills

By on November 15th, 2012

Even after retiring from teaching, Mary Fran Donohoe still helps children with reading.

Donohoe is a volunteer with Reading Pals, an organization affiliated with the United Way, that helps students improve with reading and comprehension skills.

Every week for an hour, Donohoe meets with Andarion Jones, a student Myra Terwilliger Elementary School off Northwest 62nd Street, and reads alongside him.

“The second time I came he had this big smile on his,” Donohoe said. “It was like, ‘Oh, she’s coming back.’ So that made a real difference.”

With a grant funded by Carol and Barney Barnett, the United Way of North Central Florida had enough money to launch the reading program this year.

Reading Pal volunteers meet with the same child for at last 25 hours throughout the school year.

“It’s the time as well as the attention that makes the difference with the child with that on consistent adult,” said Debbie Mason, chief executive officer of United Way of North Central Florida. “So one of the beauties of this program is to have that same adult week after week.”

Alachua County schools select children to participate in the program based on their reading assistance needs.

“He (Jones) has difficulty reading the words, so we take the words … work with the words, but his comprehension is very good,” Donohoe said.

Students like Jones will get one new book every month and after they’ve mastered it, they get to take it home to share with family and friends.

The program will continue to run during the summer, and volunteers are always welcome.

Chris Alcantara edited this story online.


This entry was posted in Education and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.
 

More Stories in Education

Hernando County Proposes School Rezoning Plans

Hernando County public schools may be rezoned for the 2016-2017 school year. Plans to rezone several schools in the county came about due to overcrowding in some schools.


Judy Beverly's summer migrant students perform "The Three Little Pigs" at Alachua Elementary on June 25. The play marked the end of the three-week camp.

Summer Programs Keep Migrant Children Learning

Counties around north central Florida are keeping migrant children learning throughout the summer. The programs are put into place to reduce disruptions migrant children face in their education due to frequent moves.


Postdoctoral Student Creates STEM Program For Girls

Charlotte Germain-Aubrey, a biology postdoctoral student, created a camp for middle school girls where they can be exposed to the different STEM fields. A different field of science is covered each day at WiSE Girlz Camp, including biology, chemistry, astronomy, engineering and computer science.


Alachua County Delays Approval Of Contract For Police In Schools

The Alachua County Commission met Tuesday to discuss police presence in schools. Discussions reached a stalemate as Superintendent Owen Roberts did not approve the request for police due to funding limits.


Tony Malo reviews "Beyond Thought," one of his students' films in his classroom on May 21. His class has just finished their end-of-the-year projects.

Gainesville High Teacher Cultivates Student Creativity

Gainesville High School teacher Tony Malo uses unique teaching and disciplinary methods to prepare students for the workforce and empower them to be self-motivated while learning to collaborate in groups. He believes his experiential learning methods are more effective than teaching for standardized tests.


Thank you for your support

WUFT depends on the support of our community — people like you — to help us continue to provide quality programming to North Central Florida.
Become a Sustainer
I want to support FM 89.1/NPR
I want to support Florida's 5/PBS
Donate a Vehicle
Underwriting Payments