So last time I mentioned that I was going to have a meeting with the team. The meeting started at 5:00pm prompt because I wanted to build a culture of punctuality right from the start. Also I nominated one of the volunteers to be the secretary, and take the minutes of the meeting. So we’ll know exactly how much progress we are making as we proceed.
There are a totally of five volunteers, although I am certain before the end of the program that number will increase because some people have shown interest in taking art classes. I wrote them (the volunteers) a letter discussing all of the things I wanted to tell them beforehand:
TO THE YOUNG TUTOR:
Welcome to the Elevate Team!
We are so glad you accepted our invitation to tutor our prospective students. We hope that you will use this opportunity duly and maximize all your potential to inspire and spur them to greatness. As you are aware Elevate is a non-profit organization hence why the coaching program is free, but we are prepared to compensate your efforts and fund some of your social needs, such as transport and feeding (your lunch at least). You will be given a sufficient sum of money after the first week of teaching consistently, so that we can measure your commitment and be sure that we can trust you to show up. A lot of people have given to this cause and we would hate to see it fail. You will be given another compensatory sum of cash at the end of the month of August when the program is concluded. It will not be an excessively monumental sum of money but just enough to say thank you and to pay for certain sacrifices you might have made during the course of the program.
We know that your time is very important to you and so we only require of you five hours a week. Meaning you will be needed to teach for one hour at a stretch every single day of the week, excluding Saturdays and Sundays. Or two hours each day when the class grows to over 25 students. You are free to leave after your class. We urge you to please be on time to your class. If possible be there at least 15 minutes beforehand. We want to show a good example of diligence to the students. We are not only trying to improve their academics but also their work ethic. They will not take what we say very seriously if we are setting another example entirely by our actions. Let’s be impeccable at punctuality. After much consideration we are adding the JSS class to the program because of students that might have younger siblings. We will be taking them English, Mathematics and Basic Science. If you are interested in taking any of those subjects let us know. We will not impose that responsibility on you. For now, we have two people ready to do the work, but you can join them. And maybe even take turns in teaching the junior students.
This is going to be a serious program. We want you to give your students assignments every single day. And then, double the take on weekends. We want them on their toes. Please let’s keep the assignments offline. That is, they shouldn’t need the internet to get the solutions to whatever work you give them to do. Let it be directly related to what they are taught that day. It doesn’t have to be a lot, but it must be sufficient to keep their minds around their work while they are home. Be sensitive to the fact that they will get assignments from 4 other tutors so use this to measure how much work is enough while making sure it’s not too much, we want to make sure they have sometime to sleep, relax and also help their parents with chores.
The tone of your class is completely up to you. Whether or not you will dictate notes or write them on the board or give no notes at all is your choice. You are free to choose what is best for both you and the students. Be interactive with your class. The second aim of these classes is to inspire and cultivate a community of mentorship. Tell them your story. Give them practical tips. Be open with them. Let them relate with you on a practical level. This is not a conventional school setting and so there must be stark distinctions. Get to know your student, get involved in their lives and choose to help them through whatever academic challenge they might be going through. Remember that these people will remember you all their lives. Be conscious of the power you have within you to change their lives. We are also requiring that you have at least one impromptu test for your students each week. This is very important. We want to be able to access and track their grades, so we can pull in reinforcement on their weaknesses and encourage their strengths.
There will be only one class (SS 1+SS2+SS3). We plan to go through the WAEC syllabus within these four weeks. We might not be able to complete it but we want to go as far as we can. Get your hands on the WAEC syllabus for your subject and be prepared to take the classes.
There is a timetable attached to this document with your subject shaded. Please remember to be on time always and if you will be unavailable let us know beforehand so we can make proper adjustments.
We are strong believers in God and in His supernatural power. With that in mind we want you to pray as you take on this role in the lives of the kids; that God will use you as an agent of change in their lives. That this experience will change them for the better. We want you to approach this work prayerfully and in utter dependence on God in influencing them for good.
God bless you. We are grateful for your company and contribution on this journey. We expect that at the end of it all we would all be changed for the better and will return to give God praise.
In case you are unaware, you are now a world influencer! It all begins here.
Someone suggested that there should be an orientation for the students as they arrive. And we agreed that the tutor taking the first period of the day should be incharge of that.
So let’s be real for a second: I am nervous. There are times thoughts like ‘who sent me?’ just crosses my mind. Or ‘what if it all goes to hell?’ But all that pales in comparison to the promises of God. God will go before me and make all paths straight. It will be fine. God will get all the glory. Lives will be transformed. Testimonies will overflow. There’s no reason to fret. What’s there to lose?
I got some more money today, and more has been promised. I am grateful to every one that has contributed monetarily. I know it’s no joke giving your money out, especially in the current economy and that’s how I know God will see your sacrifices and bless you bountifully.
At the moment I am stocked with stuff to do. So many ideas in my head, so many physical things to get done, asides Elevate. I am even wondering how I got to writing this post. We are starting this week guys! Sheesh! Feels like a dream. I’m guessing this is how brides feel a night to their wedding. Haha. It’s going to be awesome!
See you on Tuesday.
Grace & Peace.