Junior Kayla Guelig leaves Journalism Seminar a few minutes early each day to spend time pursuing her dream: becoming an educator. As part of the SASD Youth-Tutoring-Youth Program (YTY), Guelig works with a teacher to assist young learners in the classroom. YTY supports students’ exploration of their future goals, helping them with post-secondary planning. Here, Kayla shares briefly about her experience so far and why she loves working with youth:
YTY stands for Youth Tutoring Youth. It's where high schoolers go out in the community and pick a grade they would like to work with. Currently, I am tutoring kindergarteners at Jefferson Elementary School every day. The kindergartners that I work with are ELL which stands for English Language Learners.
The reason Youth Tutoring Youth is so important to me is because I am able to see what it's like to be a teacher. I am able to work with children with their writing and showing them how to spell. I love being able to connect with the kids and be able to talk to them every time I come in. On my first day, I was felt like the "stranger" in the classroom. Now, every time I come into the classroom some will run to me and give me a hug.
Youth Tutoring Youth is a great experience for anyone who thinks they want to become a teacher. On Wednesdays, we have a lot of gatherings as a whole class and we read books as a whole. On all the other days, we have writing and workshops where we can work one-on-one. It's nice being able to help them work on details and help them with their letters and writing.
One of the students and I are working on spelling her name. Every day I help her practice letters of the alphabet. I have her try to match the uppercase letters with the lower case letters. I have noticed a lot of change through this process and it's amazing to see. We are still working on her letter sounds!
A couple of days before Thanksgiving break I got to do a lesson plan with them. We read a book about all the different things about Thanksgiving, like colors and family and friends and even what you eat on Thanksgiving. Then I shared a poem about being thankful. After reading we all worked on a worksheet. They could color in the pictures. Then they wrote what they we're thankful for in the little box on the paper. I thought the lesson plan went really well because they all paid attention. They also did very well with participation! Overall, I love youth tutoring youth and will continue it until the day I graduate.
Kindergartners share what they are thankful for during a tutoring session with Guelig. Photo Credit: Kayla Guelig