Caciana is an 8th grader at the Dearborn School in Roxbury who joined her family in Boston from Cape Verde about a year ago. She smiles easily and is always ready with a funny story. Her social skills are wonderful, but her reading skills are not. She was invited to come to Saturday School, a ten week tutoring program of Roxbury Presbyterian Church, Dudley Street Neighborhood Initiative, and Trinity Public School Partners. That’s where I met her. We read Seed Folks, by Paul Fleischman, a story about people in Cleveland becoming friends through sharing a community garden. Caciana knew the words, but punctuation was a challenge, and she didn’t always understand what she was reading. Like those residents of Cleveland, we worked together slowly and patiently and when we finished, her reading was more fluent and she was pausing more regularly for those commas and periods. As importantly, and like those neighbors in Cleveland, Caciana and I became friends.
-Lallie Lloyd, Coordinator, Trinity Public School Partners