Just in time for the reopening of Cayman’s schools, the YMCA offered an intensive tutoring programme to 16 Extended After-School Programme students from Sir John A. Cumber Primary School and George Town Primary School. Students were invited to join the YMCA for three mornings of rigorous one-on-one literacy and numeracy tutoring. The intent of the programme was to help bridge the learning gap for children who might not have had access to strong academic support over the lockdown period.
The Y partnered with Rawlinson & Hunter, PricewaterhouseCoopers and Literacy is for Everyone (LIFE) who all provided volunteer tutors to support the initiative. As a result of the collaboration, the programme was offered at no cost to families.
As with all YMCA programmes, the sessions adopted the philosophy of learning through play. Students and volunteers alike enjoyed lessons filled with literacy and numeracy games such as Multiplication Connect 4, Spelling Pictionary and Addition Hopscotch. Participants also worked their way through Kumon Math and Summer Reading Review and Prep books which they could also complete from home.
“The YMCA supports literacy and numeracy throughout the school year and does quarterly testing in these areas to monitor progress. Therefore, this three-day intensive workshop aligns well with our objectives, and we are so pleased that we were able to offer it to these students,” explained Gillian Smith, Executive Director. “As we enter the new school year, the Y will continue to enhance these areas as we look to make up for academic time lost during lockdown.”
“I think this was an excellent programme which provided a very thorough experience for both the participants and the tutors,” said one of the volunteers who was asked to anonymously assess the programme. “I enjoyed the time I spent with my student Tiana, and especially liked that I had flexibility in delivering materials as each child is different and responds differently. Tiana reminded me about patience and the importance of (snack) time; she spoke to me in Spanish and challenged me to be creative in my delivery so that she could learn as well as have fun.”