Who do I call if I will be absent (such as illness)?
Please call or email the teacher you volunteer with. The email when you were matched to your teacher contains your teacher’s contact information.
How long am I expected to volunteer?
This depends on your assignment and wishes. It is important for our students to get to know you and develop a comfort level with you, so we prefer a minimum of 20 hours.
How often should I volunteer?
Volunteer at least once a week, for 2 hours minimum, but whatever works out best for you, the students, and the staff. We realize that illnesses, vacations, family, or work may make volunteering impossible some weeks. Please give your assigned teacher/staff as much notice as possible when you will be absent.
Will I be responsible for students' test scores or success in class?
As a classroom volunteer, you should model correct grammar, speech and work habits. You can ask the teacher for direction and guidance.
What if my learner has disabilities?
Learning will probably be slower with possibly some inconsistent retention between lessons. Recognize this as a part of a learning challenge rather than as a reflection of your teaching ability. Talk to the teacher about supplemental approaches, resource books, or possible testing procedures. The Teacher will, more than likely, be aware if the student has learning challenges.
Should volunteers tutor students of a different gender?
In theory, any volunteer should be able to teach any student, but some backgrounds may present barriers. For example, a male student may feel more comfortable with a male volunteer. When we match you with a student, we will have researched what students prefer. If you are concerned, please ask your assigned teacher for guidance.
What if I’m not familiar with the subject matter or dislike teaching it?
Discuss your concerns with your teacher. You might have the option to take some of the books home with you to familiarize yourself with the subject matter or you could ask your teacher to not assign you to work with learners in those areas.
What if I make a mistake or I don’t know the answer?
Great! It lets the learner know you are human too! Don’t bluff. You could say something like, “I’m not sure. Let’s see if we can find the answer together!” If it is still a struggle, please talk to your assigned teacher to discuss the question/problem.
Can I read the Metro North ABE Volunteer Handbook online?
Absolutely! You can read it here.