Ben showed me this awesome volunteer program he's doing, and after looking it over, I signed up right away. Basically, you act as an e-mentor and penpal to a 3-5th grader. The kid reads books throughout the schoolyear, and you read the same books. Then you write letters to one another discussing those books.
The idea is to both get the kids excited about reading, as well as help them improve their writing and vocabulary by modeling it through your letters. It sounds great!
I'd been snooping around for volunteer opportunities because I feel like that is one area of my life that is lacking these days. It is difficult, though, with the busy and often erratic schedule of a game developer to create time for a regular commitment. This is something that I can slide right into my life and keep up with.
I'm surprised I hadn't heard about it until now, and I wonder how common it is in grade schools across the country. I will have to suggest that my teacher friends look into it.
Hey! Teacher friends! You should look into this.