Catholic Multicultural Center offers new children’s programs Print
Thursday, Aug. 16, 2012 -- 9:56 AM

Youth play during a Story Time at the Madison Catholic Multicultural Center. (Contributed photo)MADISON — The Catholic Multicultural Center (CMC) has been busy this summer. There are a variety of free programs available to help serve the needs of the Southside community.

But do you think of the CMC as a place for fun and learning for children, too? This summer, the CMC welcomed Story Time Fun and summer tutoring to its children’s programs.

Story Time Fun

Volunteers Lisa and Jenn shared what it’s like to run Story Time Fun, a program meant for younger children. Story Time Fun is all about opening the door to imagination and creativity. The program features a daily craft and several stories. The stories range from the classics like the itsy bitsy spider — with hand motions, of course — to newer picture books. Stories are followed by free playtime and a daily snack. This takes place in the childcare room at the center.

Lisa had volunteered for the meal program and thought she would like to do some more volunteering and came up with the idea for Story Time Fun. Jenn was interested in getting involved with kids’ programs at the CMC and joined Lisa to plan this program. They have lots of helpers with them as well; their children bring board games and participate in the fun.

This program is recommended for children ages eight and under, but the volunteers wanted to note that they have the flexibility to accommodate many ages. Summer Story Time Fun is the perfect way to spend a Thursday morning. The activity is currently scheduled for Thursday mornings from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. Any child is welcome to join.

Summer tutoring program

The CMC is also offering a summer tutoring program where kids can get one-on-one help in academic areas they wish to strengthen. Terri, one of the volunteer tutors, shared her insights on the importance of this program. More specifically, why is it valuable? She answered, “for me or for them?” Terri is a retired teacher, who thinks it is wonderful and a joy to be working with kids again, helping them strengthen their academic skills.

The program started during the winter with the homework club where students could come after school and get help with their homework. The center has been offering this homework club for several years. However, there was a community need for summer tutoring so Terri and her teacher friend Therese carried this program into the summer and began working with kids on reading, writing, and math. They help kids who are both struggling in a subject and those who simply want to get ahead for the next school year.

Terri said the tutoring is available for first through eighth grade students and even high school students. If a student is at a high level in a subject Terri or Therese did not specialize in, they are flexible and work to find someone with experience to help that student.

Instilling a love of learning

Terri hopes that the tutoring will help students to love what they are learning. For example, she said that a tutor could instill a love of reading by offering material the student finds appealing. Finding enjoyment in schoolwork is a huge part of becoming a successful student. Terri also mentioned that it is helpful for the students to come in regularly, as they can build on what they have learned over the course of the summer.

The summer tutoring program offers a friendly environment and constructive way for students to keep knowledge over the summer. Terri said she was very impressed at how hard the kids work and how much they want the help and appreciate it. The tutoring program is on Tuesdays from 9 a.m. to 12 noon and Wednesdays at the same time.

For more information

At no cost, children can participate in safe and friendly learning opportunities at the CMC this summer. The tutoring program is currently at capacity. Those interested are encouraged to contact the center at 608-661-3512 to obtain information about homework club for the fall. Any family interested in Story Time Fun can call the center or simply come on Thursday morning.

The Catholic Multicultural Center is located at 1862 Beld St., off Park St. on Madison’s south side.


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