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Ben and Austin spent the fall literacy tutoring session studying the moon and even did a research project on the subject. Austin, like most new tutors, was a little nervous about tutoring having no teaching background. He asked lots of great questions and was eager to meet Ben and get started. Ben loves to learn and was excited to work with Austin. On one of their tutoring sessions, Austin was having some technical difficulties with Teams, the platform used for virtual tutoring, and the program coordinator hopped on the call. She made small talk with Ben while Austin did some troubleshooting. After about two minutes of “What are your plans this weekend?” and “What are you learning in school?” Ben said, “Alright I’m ready to get back to my tutoring session.”

As the weeks progressed, it was so incredible to see their excitement grow as they learned about the moon, and outer space in general. Austin would write notes in Ben’s file saying, “Ben really enjoyed reading the level C book about the Moon. He is confident in answering questions with multiple options if I circle things with him on the page. He wants to learn more about the moon so he can write a report on it.” He also said, “In an effort to continue reading about books involving space, I presented him a Level F book instead of level C. Ben had no issues understanding the more difficult level and read very well. Although a little distracted towards the end, Ben and I made a Venn Diagram about the differences between the Moon and the Earth. He did very well in his comprehension of the book.” Austin provided Ben with an opportunity to explore a topic he really enjoyed and discuss it at length with a new friend; and, in turn Ben helped boost Austin’s confidence as a tutor by being so enthusiastic to learn.

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