ST LOUIS - At the end of second year of service, now as the Team Leader at Woodward Elementary, I decided to tutor a couple of my students from last year once more before the end of the school year. My little first graders have become taller, almost-third-graders, and they are no longer in need of tutoring. They do, however, enjoy special attention nonetheless. At the close of one of our final group tutoring session, I let each of my second graders choose a couple of books to take home. I asked my once-struggling readers to name their favorite thing about second grade - they answered, "READING."
On the way back to class, I told my students that I would miss them very much. They assured me, "We will miss you too, but we can write to each other, and we can remember you when we read our books." That made my heart melt. These kids did not know how to read or write when I first met them. Now they enjoy reading and are proud of it.
Arlene Fair served with the AmeriCorps St. Louis Education Team at Woodward Elementary during Years 16 & 17. Both of her parents are teachers and she's moving with her husband, another teacher, to California to pursue a Masters in Literacy.