Frontier College - A Canadian Literacy Organization
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Programs Near You

Working with Children and Youth

Frontier College works with community-based groups and organizations to set up Reading Circles and volunteer tutoring programs for children. By helping children to get hooked on books today, we are working to promote a love of reading for the future.

Reading Circles

A Reading Circle is a place where children and volunteers read together for enjoyment. Once a week for an hour, children and volunteers get together to enjoy books and stories. Reading Circles are organized in low income housing communities, community centres, after school programs, aboriginal communities - anywhere families and children gather.

Reading Circles are easy to run. Frontier College trains parents, volunteers, organizations and others interested in setting up and operating Reading Circles for the children in their neighbourhoods. Visit Resources to see more about setting up and running a Reading Circle in your community.

Frontier College's Family Literacy activities also include workshops, speaking engagements and promotional events to encourage and enable parents and care-givers to read with their children every day.

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One-to-one and Small Group Tutoring

Frontier College works with children and youth across Canada in a variety of settings. Volunteers are screened and trained to work as one-to-one tutors, small group tutors and classroom helpers.

Our approach focuses on the strengths of the learner and the knowledge and experience that they bring to the learning experience.

Frontier College volunteers work in a settings ranging from schools, to community centres to libraries and shelters. This work with children and youth provides learners with literacy and homework support and has a positive impact on their self-esteem.

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Homework Clubs

Frontier College works with community-based groups and organizations to set up Homework Clubs for children and teenagers.

At Homework Clubs students meet one-to-one with volunteer tutors to read books, write stories, do homework, play word games - anything that will improve the reading and writing abilities of the students. Tutors and students meet at least once a week.

Frontier College provides training and resources for volunteer tutors, and community organizations support tutors and students. Visit Resources to see more about setting up and running a Homework Club in your community.

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Summer Programming for Children and Youth

Aboriginal Summer Literacy Camps

Frontier College Aboriginal Summer Literacy Camps operate in over 60 communities in Ontario, Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Quebec.

In total, 60-100 children in each community have the opportunity to attend the summer literacy camps. Based on our experiences, a curriculum is developed that includes literacy games and activities, community specific content (e.g. elders), and an overarching theme that emphasizes the fun of reading and writing. Literacy is embedded into fun camp activities (e.g. scavenger hunts and games like tag). Camp counselors are hired and receive an extensive orientation and literacy training. Aboriginal specific content is developed through community involvement and engagement. The camps operate on a few key principles:

  • Community-Based: The diversity of each community is recognized and the summer camps are customized to the specific needs of each individual community, while at the same time offering standard, repeatable best practices. Members of the Aboriginal community are involved in the design and delivery of the summer camp program.
  • Respectful: Aboriginal knowledge, customs, cultures and history are valued and reflected in the design and delivery of the summer camp program.
  • Inclusive: Aboriginal youth are involved in the delivery of programs and services, with training included to support them in these efforts.

Camps are developed to meet the needs of the specific communities in which we work. As such, we have a number of models:

Model Details
Fully Staffed Model Frontier College hires camp counselors to runs the program in the community. Counselors are generally hired from the community.
Community Run Camp The community hires staff (often through summer employment programs) and runs the camp. Staff are trained and supported by Frontier College staff.
Embedded Model In some communities summer programming already exists. Frontier College provides training to the staff of the existing camp; the focus is on embedding literacy in fun camp activities (e.g. word tag, reading relays).

TD Reading Tents

TD Bank Group logo imageReading Tents, as part of the history and tradition of Frontier College, are intended to promote reading and literacy awareness by exposing children and families to a wide range of books, stories and creative literacy activities. The reading tents encourage children to read for fun as well as to further develop their reading skills over the summer months. Our staff and volunteers run Reading Tents in communities across the country. The primary role of the Reading Tent Coordinator in each city is to organize, coordinate, and deliver a series of outdoor reading tents for children and their parents or caregivers over approximately an eight week period. Go to Programs Near You to find out more.

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