Connecting Kids to Christ Through Tutoring Program3 min read

Children smile from ear to ear as they enter and welcome their tutors. Arms are filled with books, games, letter tiles, and whatever else makes the next 75 minutes an exciting time for learning. Connecting Kids to Christ (CKC) Tutoring Program is an outreach of Gifts For All God’s Children (GFAGC) and East Bethlehem, Detroit. The purpose is clear to all: connect kids to Christ and build academic success.

Making the Grade

What’s the secret to making the grade? It is prayer, planning, and people. Each child is given a Reading Diagnostic that records skills that need to be mastered for each grade level. Each letter sound, blend, digraph, and phoneme that is undeveloped is targeted and a plan is individually tailored for every student. These skills are focused in their lessons so students can master techniques necessary for academic success. Practice makes perfect and repetition will cement retention.

Reading is the focus, but math support is given as well. Our computer lab provides math games that build memory skills, speed, and accuracy. Our math library includes a large variety of board games, flash cards, puzzles, and other manipulatives that are hands-on and make math relevant to real life.

Another essential for success are the tutors themselves. As true lay ministers, they come faithfully to serve and instruct their student. Together they pray and study the Word, building a bond, helping students grow in wisdom and understanding.

The Christian, patriotic curriculum is full of Scripture, building godly character and love for each other and for country. Every student has their own folder that includes the following:

  • Phonics workbook;
  • Journal for bible and writing prompts;
  • Skill worksheets;
  • Lesson plans;
  • Vocabulary cards;
  • Readers.

Testimonies stream in from tutors, parents and students:

“I’m learning more at CKC than at my Academy and I’m having fun. Here, I have an adult to help me two days a week. I’d rather be here.” Ricky, Student

“With trepidation, I explored tutoring. Could I set an example that was worthy? Could I teach properly? Would my student accept my help? Was I able to commit every week for several months? I found my student to be interested and hard working. I have enjoyed this experience immensely. I’m working with tremendous people that really care about the kids and give you the support needed to succeed.” Dave, Tutor

“A third grade boy came to us in September reading only 5-8 First Grade words. He now reads whole books and demonstrates to anyone who will listen. Mom reported, ‘He is doing so much better since tutoring; for the first time he’s made the honor roll!'” Jackie, Operations Director

Tutors remark that the children have progressed greatly since September. Report cards are coming in with A’s, B’s and Honor Rolls. Tutors and students are excitedly awaiting the final assessments to see how much they’ve achieved. Expectations are high and learning is racing to the goal line of success.

The goal line of success would have been very difficult without the Lutheran organizations that helped provide funds for the CKC Center and Tutoring program. We thank LWML, LCMS, and the Wiebe Foundation for their grants that helped realize this vision for the glory of God and for Connecting Kids to Christ.

Photos courtesy of CKCT

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About the Author

Susan Gawencki is a retired Detroit Public School teacher and serves as the Curriculum Director of CKC Tutoring.

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