Williamstown Elementary & Williams Annual Partnership Report

2019-20 Annual Report

Shaina Adams-El Guabli, Williamstown Elementary School Coordinator, Classroom Support

Tracy Baker-White, Williamstown Elementary School Coordinator, Science

Williams Elementary Outreach (WEO) coordinated eight programs (Reading Buddies, Math Buddies, Recess Buddies, Classroom Helpers, Big Sibs, Adventures in Learning, After School Tutoring, and Science Fellows), worked with various student-led and community groups that brought student volunteers to WES, and further developed and/or piloted additional programs during the 2019-20 school year.

  • 74 Williams students worked in programs (73 Fall, 96 Spring)
  • 57 Williams student volunteers
  • 2,729 hours worked

*****

Reading and Math Buddies
It was another wonderful year for the Reading and Math Buddies programs! There was growth in terms of applicant and participant numbers, a testament to the programs’ wide-reaching successes. The WES students enjoyed working with 16 Williams students in the fall and 20 students in the spring. This year, Reading and Math Buddies evolved in program design to allow for a home classroom for the Williams Students–this allowed for teachers and students to build relationships, and for the Williams Buddies to gain a deeper connection to the children in the classroom.

Recess Buddies
This fall was the start of the second full year of the Recess Buddies program at WES, and it was another successful iteration of this opportunity. The Williams Recess Buddies are a wonderful addition to the school day for the children–they provide fun, support, and an extra set of eyes and ears on the playground. The Williams students also provide an important resource on inclement weather days when recess moves indoors to individual classrooms. 

Classroom Helpers
Classroom Help continues to be a successful program building on strong relationships between Williams students, Williamstown Elementary School (WES) teachers, and WES students.  Williams College students gain the experience of being in the classroom and providing support and help to both WES students and WES teachers while also building a rapport over the course of several years with the teacher with whom they work.  Many students who begin as Classroom Helpers as first years or sophomores continue across their Williams years to build a strong, meaningful, constructive, and rewarding relationship with a teacher. 18 of 25 Classroom Teachers worked with at least one Classroom Helper during the course of the year.  

Big Sibs
During the fall semester of the 2019-2020 school year, eight students volunteered in the Big Sibs program at Williamstown Elementary School.  The program grew in the spring semester, which, unfortunately then abruptly ended because of the COVID19 pandemic.  Feedback has been that the program is very helpful to the elementary students involved and is a meaningful experience for the Williams College Students.  

Adventures in Learning
Adventures in Learning (AiL) is a month-long after-school enrichment program taught primarily by Williams College students and community volunteers during January. In its sixth year as part of the CLiA department, Williams provides funding support for a Program Coordinator, Student Leaders, as well as CLiA administrative support and some funding for class supplies.   AiL 2020 was a very successful year with 21 classes taught by 44 Williams students, as well as the involvement of 3 Williams College faculty/staff, and 3 members from the Williamstown Community.

After School Tutoring
The After School Tutoring Program at Williamstown Elementary provides homework help to students who need it at no cost.   Williams College tutors work one on one or in small groups with children, under the supervision of a paid teacher coordinator.  Tutors develop a close mentoring relationship with WES students that fosters both academic and personal growth.  All tutoring takes place at Williamstown Elementary School.  

Science Fellows
Twenty-six years ago, Williams College started its partnership with Williamstown Elementary School with the introduction of the Science Fellows Program – designed to support elementary science education with college student teaching assistants.  Initially, the program was funded as a Community Education Initiative by a grant from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute.  It is now an integral part of the Williams College/WES Partnership administered by the College’s Center for Learning in Action. Science learning at WES is supported at all the grade levels but is intensively provided at K, 1st and 2nd grades.  In these three grades Williams College Science Fellows and the Outreach Coordinator actually co-teach lessons with classroom teachers on a weekly basis.  Lessons are designed to meet the required State Standards for Learning in Science.  Additional support is provided to grades 3-6 by the Outreach Coordinator, who purchases special materials for activities and occasionally assists with upper-grade lessons.