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AmeriCorps Literacy Tutor

AmeriCorps- Monterey County United for Literacy
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Members will provide one-to-one tutoring to students in Kindergarten through fourth grade in Salinas, Seaside, King City, Chualar, and Greenfield (cities within Monterey County) to help them improve their fluency and comprehension. Tutoring sessions will include: reading and discussing books; listening to students read a variety of texts at his or her independent reading level; promoting reading through individually and teacher-designed activities; engaging in phonemic awareness skill building exercises; and expanding students' knowledge base through the written word. Tutoring will take place throughout the entire school year and summer school, during and after school hours. Orientation, ongoing trainings, and most service events take place in Salinas.

Service Activities

Member's will focus their time on lesson planning and directly tutoring students in reading.

A Day in the Life of an AmeriCorps Literacy Tutor:

8:00am Arrive at elementary school
8:00-8:30am Organize and prepare activities for students.
8:30-9:00am Tutoring session 1- Grade 3: Jose
9:00-9:30am Tutoring session 2- Grade 1: Luna
9:30-10:00am Tutoring session 3- Grade 1: Denise
10:00-10:15am Break
10:15-10:45am Tutoring session 4- Grade 2: Louis
10:45-11:15am Tutoring session 5-Grade 2: Oscar
11:15-12:00pm Lunch
12:00-12:30pm Tutoring session 6- Grade 1: Christian
12:30-1:00pm Tutoring session 7- Grade K: Katrina and Anthony
1:00-1:30pm Tutoring session 8- Grade 1: Mia
1:30-2:00pm Tutoring session 9- Grade 3: Francisco
2:00-2:15pm Break
2:15-3:30pm Lesson planning for next day
3:30-4:00pm Tutoring after school program students: Grade 1: 4 students
4:00-4:30pm Tutoring after school program students: Grade 1: 2 students
4:30-5:00pm Tutoring after school program student: Grade K: Sophia
5:00pm Car pool back to CSUMB housing or head home

Community Need Addressed

Although Monterey County is known as a tourist destination on the Central Coast and the national image of the area is one of wealth and beauty, illiteracy, hunger, poverty, and high unemployment exist. Census 2014 found that 17% of the people in the county are living in poverty. The school districts AmeriCorps members serve have a student population that is mainly Latino (93%), and over 95% of students served qualify for the National School Lunch Program. Many of the schools are in rural areas amidst acres of agricultural land, and students come from migrant families who have difficult lives, posing additional obstacles for students to overcome.
Only 32% of 3rd graders in Monterey County read at grade level, which is a major predictor of high school graduation and academic success over a person’s lifetime. Literacy, or the lack thereof, is directly linked to poverty, unemployment, and incarceration.
Recognizing the critical need for students to understand and utilize vast amounts of new information and vocabulary, the mission of the AmeriCorps, Monterey County United for Literacy program is to enable Monterey County children to read well and independently by the end of the third grade, so they can read to learn in the fourth grade and beyond. The doors to achievement will be open to children if they are able to read, enjoy reading, and are well prepared for the academic rigor that begins at fourth grade. Students who are not successful readers and who do not read independently by the end of third grade experience significantly lower rates of academic success, increased dropout rates, and tend to exhibit other at-risk behaviors.
Our AmeriCorps team of literacy tutors, supported by the districts, schools, and teachers, are part of the support team to help each struggling reader improve. We hope as a team to impact the statistics of literacy rates in the county, and as individuals to impact the future of each child we support.

Position Outcomes

During service, each member will provide literacy tutoring to 20-30 students, striving to achieve 1 full grade level of reading growth for each student. The AmeriCorps team of literacy tutors will strive to serve over 1,000 students, 800 of whom will receive 15-75 hours of tutoring with 200 or more students achieving a full grade level of improvement in their reading abilities.

While our main mission is to increase literacy levels of K-4th grade students, we have collected the achievement data of students over the past 15 years. We know there are other incredible impacts happening during the service for students. The following three are team focuses:

Impact #1: Students develop an enduring love for reading.
What we mean: Kindergarten through 4th grade students will gain foundational reading skills and develop the ability to read independently at grade level. They will discover an enjoyment and personal connection to reading and the pursuit of knowledge.
Impact #2: Students elevate their self-confidence.
What we mean: As students gain skills in reading and overcome reading struggles, their self-assurance and trust in their own abilities grows.
Impact #3: Students develop perseverance.
What we mean: Students will face and overcome challenges, work long-term on difficult reading tasks, and experience both success and setbacks during literacy tutoring and moments of pride and discouragement. With the guidance, motivational support and encouragement from their tutor; students continue to work towards personal academic growth and commitment.

AmeriCorps Members are also greatly impacted by their year or years with our team! Members love it so much we have 2, 3 and even 4 year members! How will joining our team change your life?


Childcare assistance if eligible, Education award upon successful completion of service, Health coverage, Living allowance, Stipend, Student loan forbearance, Training

Food Stamps: Most of our members also qualify for Food Stamps and are able to combine their living allowance and food support to make their budgets doable. Housing: Cal State University Monterey Bay, one of our educational partners, allows our members to rent apartments on campus in their staff housing, about 25 minutes away from our service sites in Salinas and only a few minutes from our new Seaside school sitese . In the past, 3 or 4 tutors have shared a 2 BR, 1 bath apartment and the rent of approx. $1450.00/month. These apartments are unfurnished (although members often leave furniture for the upcoming year’s members); the rent includes water, cable, garbage and sewer. Gas and electric are not covered. Members are not required to live in these apartments, but many out-of-state members choose to live together and enjoy the benefits of car pooling, friendship, and supporting one another throughout the year.

Skills you will gain

First Aid/ CPR Certification, Youth Mental Health First Aid Certification, Event Planning, Literacy Tutoring, Event Support, Leadership, Working with Youth, Classroom Experience, Teamwork, Lesson Planning, Teaching Reading

Competencies You Will Develop

Lead group discussion, Listen to and consider others' viewpoints, Maintain open lines of communication with others, Write cleary and effectively
Creativity & Problem Solving
Able to identify and define the problem, Capable of generating possible solutions, Communicate the problem to appropriate personnel, Improvise, Provide relevant expertise, Select and implement well-considered solution
Develop constructive working relationships and maintain them over time, Establish a high degree of trust and credibility with others, Interact professionally and respectfully with supervisors and co-workers, Stay positive and outcome oriented, Use appropriate strategies and solutions for dealing with conflicts and differences to maintain a smooth workflow
Accepts responsibility, Anticipate the consequences of decisions
Seek opportunities to improve knowledge of tools and technologies that may assist in streamlining work and improving productivity
Create environment of contribution, Demonstrate the effective allocation of time and resources efficiently, Facilitate group planning, Set goals
Be pleasant, courteous, professional and respectful when dealing with internal and external customers or clients, Evaluate customer or client satisfaction, Honor the privilege of being able to work with and for those being served, Recognize the importance of maintaining privacy and confidentiality of those being served, Understand and anticipate the needs of others, Understand the importance of one's role in the functioning of the organization
  • Activity Types Hands On Activities, Professional Activities
  • Focus Areas Education & Youth
  • Length of Service 11 Months
  • Education Requirements High School Graduate
  • Placement Individual and Team Placements
  • Service Setting Elementary School
  • Weekly Training Hours 2

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