Become a Reading Tutor for Kids at Glenfair Elementary (PSU Serve Your City *Series*)

Open Opportunity


Do you care about literacy and education? Are you interested in helping an elementary school student work on their reading skills?

Share your love of learning and reading by becoming a reading tutor at Glenfair Elementary! We are looking for up to 10 tutors to join our volunteer tutor team this Spring term, with training happening towards the end of Winter term. This service opportunity will take place in person at Glenfair elementary, as part of the Student Community Engagement Center's Serve Your City *Series* program, in collaboration with Multnomah County Library and Glenfair Elementary! 

Many of this year’s elementary school kids started their schooling during the pandemic. The pandemic has set back a lot of kids in their learning, and most of the students we will be working with are reading below grade-level for their age. By providing reading support to these kids, volunteers will help support learners in improving their reading skills and catching up to their grade level.

What You Will Do:

Volunteer tutors will provide learning and encouragement for students at Glenfair Elementary on a 1:1 or small-group basis, to help boost their confidence and improve their reading skills. Literacy tutors will:

  • Assist students in working on literacy skills; they need help with letter names, sounds, blending, sounding out words, etc.

  • Engage learners using open-ended questions to determine their specific needs and goals 

  • Share knowledge and love of reading

  • Be prepared to offer resources (both from the library and reputable online resources) to assist learners

  • Use a simple form that can be shared back with students and guardians on what you have covered/student’s progress.

Time & Commitment Required: Thursdays, 1:15 - 3:15 starting March 2nd

This volunteer position requires a weekly commitment on Thursday afternoons from 1:15 - 3:15 at Glenfair Elementary during Spring Term (April - early June). Training and initial program orientation will take place Thursday afternoons on March 2nd and 16th. 

Each tutor will be matched with students for three short 25-30 minute tutoring sessions, either working 1:1 or in pairs. The goal is to have student tutors work with the same students each week to build trust and support.

Location: This volunteer opportunity takes place at Glenfair Elementary, in outer NE Portland, at NE Glisan and NE 152nd Ave. Glenfair Elementary is accessible via MAX and is a ~55 min trip from the PSU campus. It can be reached by car in 15-30 minutes, depending on traffic.

For this opportunity, volunteers must be able to get themselves to Glenfair; transportation is not provided from PSU.

Orientation/Training/Resources provided or required: 

  • Volunteer tutors will meet with Multnomah County Library youth librarian Jackie Partch for two literacy tutoring trainings in March of winter term to prepare for the tutor role. 

  • Literacy materials will be provided for students to use with their students; physical books may be used or eBooks that can be shared via iPads. Tips for how to work on letter names, sounds, blending, sounding out words, and more will be provided.  

  • Tutors will also meet bi-monthly as a group to check in with each other and offer ideas, tips, resources, and more

Skills & Knowledge Required:

  • Interest and experience working with kids

  • Minimum 18 years of age

  • Enrolled PSU student during Spring term 2023

  • Fluency in written and spoken English 

  • Empathy and a friendly demeanor

  • Exceptional communication and active listening skills

  • Proficiency using email

  • Patience, flexibility, and creativity

  • Willingness to use a variety of methods to promote understanding with students

  • Respects diversity and appreciates diverse learning abilities

  • Commitment to help individuals reach personal educational goals

  • Ability to work as part of a team and to collaborate with other volunteers and staff  

  • Responsible and willing to make it to shifts on-time, and (if needed) canceling with plenty of notice when possible

  • Ability to pass a criminal record check (no-cost)

Preferred Qualifications:

  • Prior teaching, tutoring, and/or mentoring experience

  • Ability to model leadership, professional behavior, and be a strong role model

  • Fluency in languages other than English (Spanish or Swahili in particular would be useful)

  • Experience working with kids

Applications are open from now through February 27th, or until all slots are filled, whichever is sooner! 

To apply, press the green Registration button on the upper right hand corner of this page.

The information you provide in this application will be used to assure that the Serve Your City *Series* program is pairing and recruiting the best tutors for our tutoring program. Please provide as much information as possible.

For more information or questions, please email

About Our Partners:

Glenfair Elementary is our school-based partner -- a K-5 school working to prepare lifelong learners to achieve their full potential in a complex and interconnected world. Glenfair Elementary is in the Reynolds School District, in East County, and has a diverse student body with 29 different languages spoken. Over 95% of its students qualify for free and reduced lunch. We will be partnering students from one or more classrooms at Glenfair to support their reading.

Multnomah County Library is our community partner helping train our reading tutors in how to support kids' literacy development. The Multnomah County Library's mission is to empower our community to learn and create. The library has been offering virtual tutoring for K-12 students since the pandemic began and is excited to help train students to be in-person tutors with a focus on literacy support in person at Glenfair.

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Opens Feb 2, 2023 1:00am
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18 and up
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