At the core of ASSET's PALS program is making connections with and building relationships between students and their tutors to help one another grow. Research shows that students perform better when they have a consistent tutor. And one-on-one tutoring provides a great space for preservice teachers to learn to connect with students.
One of our tutors, Ms. Jasmine (Ms. Jaz), checked in with her tutee Natasha to learn more about her experience with the PALS program. Natasha is in 9th grade, and she and Ms. Jaz have been working together twice a week during the school year since March 2022. They have created an incredible bond through a virtual tutoring space, and this interview speaks to the impact that intentional tutoring can have on an individual.
Prior to receiving tutoring with Ms. Jaz, what did you think about tutoring?
I thought that it would help me a lot, and it would actually be nice to have.
What do you think about tutoring now?
It is actually really helping.
What if you had a different tutor every time?
That would be kind of terrifying because I would only get to see them for a moment, and what if what if I form a good bond with them? And then it would just be sad.
How has tutoring helped you academically?
Tutoring has helped me in Reading. I raised my Reading grade my final semester and even raised my GPA too. I feel more confident when I read.
How has tutoring helped you socially and emotionally?
Well, it helps me speak better than I used to because I choose to get nervous and just be quiet and stuff. But now it's like I can actually let loose and talk to people without having to, you know, be mad or upset.
What types of things do you like doing during the tutoring session?
Mainly reading and writing stuff. Working on projects helped me a lot because I was able to get it in on time instead of being all over the place.
You showed a lot of improvement in your reading from when we began. Do you think that re-reading technique helped with your fluency?
Thank you! Yes, this actually helped a lot. I enjoyed doing these and it was helpful.
What would you tell parents, teachers, and adults about tutoring?
I would tell them that it's okay to talk to a tutor about other things besides that like mental health and stuff.
What would you tell your friends about tutoring?
I would say: “I'm not trying to be mean or anything, but if you need a tutor I am happy to set you up with one."
Behind the Scenes: At one point during the interview, Natasha shared a recent personal experience with a new song she was introduced to. Ms. Jaz asked her how the song went knowing exactly what Natasha was going to do. Natasha busted out her singing skills as she has done in prior sessions, confirming the bond and life-changing relationship between this tutor and tutee! Ms. Jaz also shared that Natasha feels empowered and excited to take on the challenge of being a highschooler.
Learn more about ASSET's PALS program here.