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Summer Reading Tutoring Program Starts June 9


JONESBORO – Youngsters who will be entering first, second or third grade have an opportunity to improve their reading and literacy skills through a summer program at Arkansas State University.

The School of Teacher Education and Leadership will provide the Summer Reading Tutoring Program.  Dr. Kwangok Song, assistant professor of teacher education and leadership, is directing the free program.

“Summer is a critical time for young readers. Children have gained reading skills over the academic year, but many children lose their skills and knowledge during the summer due to lack of consistent support,” Song explained.  “Summer reading loss particularly impacts children who read below their grade levels, who are demotivated in reading, and who may have limited access to books during summer.”

On Tuesdays and Thursdays, June 9 through July 11, children will participate in related activities to develop reading skills 10-11:30 a.m. in the Community Literacy Lab, newly built in the Education and Communication Building.

The summer program will include group read-aloud and discussion activity along with individualized tutoring and making a book using iPad technology.

“Individualized and structured support not only helps young children grow in reading, but it also motivates children to read,” she continued.  “I was fortunate to witness how the relationship between a tutor and a young student grew over time and how this support affected the child’s motivation to improve his reading skills.  I am hoping that this tutoring program can provide a space in which children can develop not only reading skills but also joy for reading.”

A-State student volunteers who are trained in teaching reading will serve as tutors.

“For this year, the program is completely volunteer-based.  I think it is important for Arkansas State students to have such an opportunity to serve the community as volunteers,” Song added.  “The opportunity is open to any student.  About half of the volunteers are from other majors, including marketing, communication disorders, psychology, and general science.  I believe that these non-education majors can bring and share different perspectives, experience and expertise to make the program unique.”

The brochure and application form were distributed to Jonesboro and Paragould School Districts through the Education Renewal Zone and Jonesboro Hispanic Community Services.  Interested parents or guardians have been contacting the professor.

For additional information, individuals may contact Song at (870) 972-3059 or ksong@astate.edu.

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Dr. Kwangok Song
Dr. Kwangok Song