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Literacy Programs for Elementary Students

The Sheard Literacy Center offers two programs designed for elementary students, the Literacy Mentoring program and the America Reads Challenge.

Literacy Mentoring Program

Mission: This after-school literacy program strives to provide local children, grades K-8, free mentoring services in the hopes that they will develop a life-long love of literacy.

Collaborative Partners: SUNY Potsdam departments of Literacy and Childhood Education, local school districts, graduate assistants, work study students, and the Corning Incorporated Foundation through the Corning/Canton Plant.

Responsibilities of Mentors:

  • Work in small groups with elementary/middle school students
  • Write a lesson plan for each mentoring session
  • Reflect on each lesson taught
  • Be available for all 8 weeks of the program
  • Be available M/W 3:15 - 4:45 p.m. or Tu/Th 3:15 - 4:45 p.m.


Submit an application (PDF) if you are interested in becoming a mentor via fax or regular mail. See application for details.


Program Coordinators

Graduate Assistants

  • To be announced

America Reads Challenge

Mission: To unite every citizen towards the goals of ensuring that our nations' children read well and independently; through the Literacy Center, eligible work study students are sent out into local schools to assist teacher with the implementation of their literacy program.

Collaborative Partners: America Reads is a federally funded program set up through the "GOALS 2000" initiative in education.

Responsibility of Tutors:

  • Attend an orientation and participate in an interview process
  • Act and dress professionally.
  • Maintain confidentiality.
  • Assist their sponsor teacher to prepare materials for lessons.
  • Work one-on-one or in small groups with students.
  • Work with the sponsor teacher to secure schedule.
  • Each tutor may earn a total of $1,200.00 (at a rate of $8.00-9.50/hour - dependent upon previous experience with the program) over the entire year (max. amount of hours you can work each week is 20 hours).