October Weekend Adventure
Every fall, tutors and students have an outdoor adventure! In 2009, we
took tutors and students to the GWU SUMMIT outdoor Challenge Course which
presents unique activitities to encourage physical, mental, and emotional
development and team-building. See http://gwired.gwu.edu/summit/home/
for more information about the Challenge Course.
October 2010, we returned to hosting a weekend camp at Prince William
Forest Park near Dumfries, Virginia. This, too, is a great opportunity
for students and tutors to socialize and work in teams. Everyone participates
in a range of activities, including hikes, touch football, softball, horseshoes,
tie-dyeing, pumpkin-carving, and a Saturday night talent show. Tutors
and students also take turns cooking for their fellow campers or cleaning
up. We sleep in cabins, and there are showers and indoor plumbing facilities.
These events are free to tutors and students.
Thanksgiving Tutor Turkey Party
annual potluck for tutors is held the Sunday before Thanksgiving is a
purely social occasion. It’s a great opportunity to get to eat delicious
food, get to know other tutors, and make new friends.
Mid-Winter Tutor Workshop
At this weekend workshop, tutors work on improving their skills. Each
year, we invite guest presenters in a range of fields (reading instruction,
child psychology, student mediation, vocational training, college planning
and financing, etc.) to share their expertise. In addition, experienced
tutors speak about their work and mentor newer tutors. This workshop helps
tutors better understand adolescents; locate available teaching and mentoring
resources; learn how to work effectively with the expanding variety of
schools; and plan new ways to help our students and each other. We often
decide on program improvements and launch new activities based on what
we learn at the Workshop.
At Career Day, which we have hosted with Mentors, Inc., students have
the opportunity to investigate potential career choices through workshops
in career exploration, financing a career path, career interest assessment,
finding a job (including summer employment and internships), and professional
dress. Our students also participate in a vocational career fair hosted
by New Futures (www.newfuturesdc.org).
Our year ends when students, tutors, parents, alumni, and college students
come together for the Awards Ceremony. We recognize elementary, middle,
junior, and senior high school graduates, and celebrate the accomplishments
of all the students in the program. Seniors and their tutors give special
talks, reflecting on their years in the program, and we award scholarships
and academic and trophies. For recipients, it’s a chance to be celebrated.
For all students, there are reminders of awards and accomplishments to
strive for. We also honor a Tutor of the