Wednesday, 2 May 2012

What's it like to volunteer in a school?

Today’s blog post comes from school volunteer Joe Thomas…

My name is Joseph Thomas. I’m originally from Merseyside and study Human Geography and Sociology at Kingston. I volunteer at Southborough High School every Thursday morning, alongside my studies and part-time job.

Joe Thomas
I work across the range of 11 to 16 year olds over 4 lessons. I also assist in an ‘early morning reading group’ before school, working with 11 to 12 year olds who may be below their reading age.

I do the reading group at 8.30am. I work with an individual student who reads to me each week. We work through a series of books to accomplish our way through the reading levels- my student’s competent and eager, and it’s rewarding to be able to assist in their progress.

After that I am placed in four lessons, which are the same each week. I am made aware of ‘statemented children’ (ones who need extra help) and particularly make sure they’re keeping up and understanding the classwork, but I also assist the teacher in the delivery and productivity of that particular lesson.

I enjoy volunteering at Southborough because it’s totally different to anything else I do. I enjoy working with the students and actually getting to know them and their educational capabilities and working on improving their school life. All the students actually appreciate and respect you as a volunteer- so do the other Teaching Assistants. I feel by me being there I am able to assist students that might have not had any support otherwise,

I’m interested in going into teaching or possibly social work, and this role is really giving me an insight into the teaching profession. I love the way I get to see various teaching styles and variances in classes in the sense of ages and setting.

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