Stephen MacDonald (left)

Stephen MacDonald (left)

Club boosts reading skills

The Junction Literacy Centre needs volunteers to expand its After School Reading Club to all local elementary schools

The After School Reading Club is full of fun and games but the learning benefits students in and out of school.

“The students read in small groups and do word-based activities to help them improve their reading skills and develop a love of reading,” said Amy Doylend, teacher/tutor with the program, which is facilitated by The Junction Literacy Centre with paid tutors who are qualified teachers and trained volunteers.

“We can see the children’s progress and their confidence with reading improving. It’s wonderful to be able to have this program in the schools.”

Alexander McDonald and his twin brother, Stephen, are nine-year-old Grade 4 students at Ellison elementary and are in their second year in the After School Reading Club.

“We have fun. It helped us learn how to read chapter books and we practise on our homework,” said Alexander, while Stephen said, “The teachers are really fun and we made lots of new friends.”

Lana Schuster, The Junction Literacy Centre skills boost coordinator, said the program needs more teachers/tutors and volunteers to be able to expand to other schools. Training (two short sessions) is provided.

“This is for kids who need a little extra help. The time commitment for the teachers and volunteers is Wednesdays and Thursdays from 3 to 4:15 p.m. Everyone is pleased with the program. Often the parents say it changes the children’s attitude to reading. They feel more comfortable trying reading in different situations and increase their ability and confidence in reading everything around them, from signs to books.”

The After School Reading Club started two years ago and is in operation in three area schools with two more wanting to join in as soon as the teachers and volunteers can be found. New and/or experienced teachers and anyone with a love of reading who wants to be involved with the program can get more information from Schuster at 250-275-3117 or