Not Just Homework

  • Credit for this story goes to Tiffany Mayer and The St. Catharines Standard

Imagine a world where students clamour to do their homework.

That seemingly other wordly vision is reality at Prince of Wales School in St. Catharines, thanks to a new homework club launched last month by Big Brothers Big Sisters of St. Catharines, Thorold & District.

Called the Not Just Homework Club, it’s helping students tick assignments off their to-do lists and giving them the chance to be mentored by local high school students. It’s also giving bragging rights to the 10 students who have signed up to be part of the after-school endeavour made possible by an Ontario Triliiul Foundation Grant.

“The kids are talking about it and how they’re enjoying it and now other kids are saying they want to be part of it too.” says Frances Lettier, Big Brothers Big Sisters Director of Services.

When the hard work is done, they do crafts together or play board games.

“They’re actually developing a relationship with their mentor.” Lettieri said. “One volunteer said she can’t imagine missing a week because the kids get so attached to their mentor.”

In addition to helping with homework, the hope is the weekly tete a tetes will boost self-esteem and personal responsibility.

But what’s good for the protege is also good for the mentor, Lettieri noted. The program fosters a spirit of volunteerism among the high school students that Lettieri hopes they continue to have throughout their lives.

The program builds on their In-School Mentoring program, in which a volunteer visits with a child experiencing some difficulty art home or school.

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