I’ve been writing about Black men and boys a lot.
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Alta—A profoundly rewarding journey
Today we have a short piece by one of our newest tutors, Vijaiya Ramkissoon, who teaches our Beginner Level students at Chaguanas South Secondary school. Our beginner students often do not recognise the letters of the alphabet and experience difficulty with writing common and capital letters. While our students at this level are poor readers and writers which undoubtedly impacts their lives, they are fast thinkers and quite intelligent.
As many hide their poor literacy skills, it also takes quite a bit of courage to enter the Alta classroom and commit to the programme. Here is Vijaiya’s piece below:
“I always believed in helping people become the best that they can be. As a new tutor at Alta, not only am I given the opportunity to do so, but I am constantly presented with the chance to create a better version of myself. The experience of actively and positively affecting the lives of others through the power of literacy has been the source of my inspiration in a society which often seems insensitive to the individual needs and capabilities of each person. I am happy to be part of the Alta family, an organisation which I believe promotes a pedagogical approach that is not adequately captured in the mainstream education system.
The opportunity to engage with my co-tutor and our students certainly has enriched my experience as they individually and collectively bring to the classroom qualities that are unique. Over the past few months, I have developed a deep respect for my students and the enthusiasm, willingness and effort they demonstrate in their desire to enhance their abilities to read and write. All in all, it is a profoundly rewarding journey.”
If you would like to join Vijaiya and our other tutors in their quest to improve the level of literacy among people in Trinidad, join the Alta team.
The prerequisites to becoming an Alta volunteer tutor are a Grade One or Two in CSEC English and the ability to commit to teaching for one academic year.
If at the end of the interview, you find that you are unable to become an Alta tutor, you have the option to become an Alta Reading Circle Guide which is less time consuming. If you do decide to continue with the process, you will then have the opportunity to meet our students during the observation period. During this period you sit in on an Alta class of your choice for eight consecutive visits.
Once observation is complete you are then ready to be trained. You do not need to be a teacher or have any experience with literacy, education or even volunteerism before coming to Alta. Alta provides training for all tutor volunteers. Training is done in April/May and gives volunteers the skills necessary to deliver the Alta Programme. Volunteers who complete training will choose a class venue where they will begin their year of volunteer service in September 2017.
Volunteer, Donate or Sponsor-a-student. Call 624-2582 or email Altapos.email@example.com for more info. Keep up to date with Alta on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram: Alta TT.