Afro-American Community Broadcasting, Inc. is building a learning lab to provide free literacy support to 40 3rd through 5th grade students each school year in need of improving reading fluency. Students will be engaged by reading books "live" on-air; writing program content and producing a round-table discussion program. High school and college students will serve as mentors to the younger students to assist them to improve their reading skills while building confidence and self-esteem.
Waterloo schools average reading proficiency for 3rd through 5th graders is near 60%. While there has been some improvement in the District, traditional teaching methods aren't working to narrow the achievement gap for black students. Our non-traditional approach to learning will help improve reading fluency and provide "hands on" experience.
Students will be engaged in many aspects of the communications industry by reading books "live" on-air, writing content for programs and producing a round-table discussion program. High school and college students will serve as mentors to the younger students to assist them to improve their reading fluency and help them build confidence and self-esteem by developing a positive rapport with a mentor. Helping children improve their ability to learn helps them become leaders in the community.
Education and training is needed to position people to secure a living wage. The need to build Iowa's talent pipeline is essential for building a thriving community. With reading being a core competency for every career path, this project leverages non-traditional approaches to learning to enrich the lives of children and communities. This project provides high school and college students "real life" transferable skills that can be used to secure employment opportunities.