Students of the Month – October 2015
Skid Row Learning Center
– Tajiri, 6th Grade. In the three years I have known Tajiri, I have seen so many improvements in his behavior, his ability to focus, and his hobbies. Tajiri recently began middle school and has already adjusted to using a daily agenda to share his assignments and projects with the tutor. After he completes his work, then he works on his art. Recently, Tajiri and his tutor ,Osmond, attended an art show in LA and they were able to display his art on the wall! Due to his determination, he is now able to complete all his school work then spend time online learning new drawing tips.
Allison Maldonado, Skid Row Learning Center Instructor
Region 1 – East LA to Pasadena
– Group tutoring. Tutoring sessions during the summer is particularly challenging for a tutor. We normally have very low attendance and hardly any student interest. However, during this past summer we had a spike in attendance and interest from students wanting to learn! It keeps us tutors excited and motivated. There are times when we have more than fifteen students in one day!! I think it is due to my fellow School On Wheels tutors who make it fun, exciting and educational. We are looking forward to the new school year!
Brenda Ramirez, Tutor
Region 2 – South LA
– Damien, Kindergarten. Damien was chosen to be Student of the Month due to his tremendous progress in his behavior. When he first joined group tutoring, he didn’t want to participate. Now, Damien is responsive and cooperative with all tutors. He follows the rules and makes the effort to do his best. He is eager to show the tutors his work to make them proud. Damien’s attitude towards learning is now positive and encouraging.
Kenisha Edwards, Regional Coordinator
Region 4 – South Bay, Long Beach
– Antonio, 2nd Grade. Antonio is 8 years old and loves football, video games, and skateboarding. He has a terrific sense of humor and he is considerate of others.
When we meet, he always has such a big smile as he greets me. Antonio came to me struggling with grade-level math and reading. In the few months since we have been working together, I have watched him go from shying away from his challenging school work to going at it head-on with a bright, positive outlook. At first Antonio struggled with basic math concepts and reading comprehension, but now Antonio is starting to understand higher mathematical concepts and focusing his attention on specific words in the text. Antonio’s reading fluency has increased, and soon he will give up counting on his fingers as he learns to memorize the adding and subtracting of numbers. Even though I know I am a good tutor, I am convinced that Antonio’s work ethic and positive attitude are the real reasons for his success. It’s been such a pleasure working with him. I look forward to the days we meet so I can see him progress and develop into a caring, hard-working, intelligent young man.
Ben Philpott-Matson, Tutor
Region 5 – Hollywood, Silver Lake, Highland Park
– Lele, 12th Grade. Lele is 18, a senior in high school and a multitalented young woman. She has the rare combination of being naturally talented in both the arts and the sciences. I love how she is a deep thinker as well. She likes to talk about big social issues like racism and poverty, and it is an honor to discuss these things with her. We all have to overcome challenges at some point in our lives, but the strength and resilience she has demonstrated in overcoming her challenges is nothing short of inspiring. I must also mention that this young lady has a razor-sharp wit and often leaves us both doubled-over in laughter! The biggest thing we work on is her sitting down and doing the work necessary to channel her natural talents into success at school. She once showed me an assignment on a topic we had worked on where she got 100%! She was proud and so was I. One of my favorite days was when we visited a college campus, and she asked questions about college and told me she was considering it for the first time. Go Lele!
Tahiti Arsulowicz, Tutor
Region 7 – San Fernando Valley
– Bonnie, 2nd Grade. I started volunteering with School on Wheels because I felt like I had knowledge, time and patience to share with a student. From the beginning, I’ve felt a strong connection with Bonnie. She is bright and sassy with loads of energy, the second oldest with three rambunctious brothers. Every week on our way to the computer lab, we look for the turtle in the pond at the shelter and talk about her week at school. We talk about Disney movies, read lyrics to Taylor Swift songs to make reading fun and Bonnie tells me when my hair looks good.
Bonnie is a hard worker when it comes to her studies. She always comes with her homework completed, so we focus a lot on reading and writing exercises. She likes to try new books in the study room and is persistent in trying to figure out new words. Bonnie articulates her frustration when things aren’t clicking, and we talk through those emotions, focusing more on the effort than the results. The few times I’ve been out of town for the week, Bonnie runs to meet me at my car on our return session, asking again for an explanation of where I’ve been. Bonnie pays attention, and these sessions are important to her.
It’s an honor to be in Bonnie’s life and to see the light come on for her time and time again. She has such strong comprehension of what’s going on in the world around her; seeing her grow this year has been a privilege.
Mary Silver, Tutor
Region 10 – South Orange County
– Melodie, 7th Grade. Melodie worked very hard over the summer to improve her reading comprehension and math skills. Each week she completed the homework assignments I put together and read from a novel of her choice. She completed twenty reading hours! Also, her seriousness toward her education and confidence in her abilities grew vastly. I am so very proud of her hard work! Just this past week we did a math assignment that she pounced on with excitement, such a change from just a couple months prior.
Heather De Felicis, Tutor
– Alex, 6th Grade. GO ALEX!! I am so delighted to hear that Alex has been chosen for the Online Student of the Month. Alex was a pleasure to tutor and we had so much fun together. When I first met Alex, he was outgoing and ready to get to work. We’ve written and read so many stories together, but I believe the subject Alex improved the most in was math. When we first started going over math together, Alex didn’t know how to multiply, add or subtract fractions. But to my surprise, he picked up on the concept very quickly. He was on a roll. Looking back, my favorite thing we did was drawing and writing stories together based on that drawing. Alex drew a very creative and imaginative picture. It was a picture of a superhero, which he named “Supershehero”, who fought a villain to save fishes in the ocean. I remember Alex writing that the villain sprayed poison on the fishes. So then I asked him, “Did the fishes die??” To which he answered, “No, they can’t die, they have superpowers.” I got a laugh out of that! The real heartwarmer came when Alex put a twist on his story, and it ended up that the fishes (instead of the superhero) worked together to use their superpowers to defeat the villain. Overall, we had so much fun together, and Alex is such a bright and intelligent kid. Keep up the great work, Al
Teresa Nguyen, Online Tutor