As a Reading Corps tutor at Princeton Primary, I’ve been amazed by the significant strides many students are making in reading. I’ve seen children transform from shy, struggling students into confident learners. But many more need support. In fact, one-in-three Minnesota third graders are not reading at grade level. 

I’m one of more than a thousand Minnesota Reading Corps tutors serving in schools and early learning centers as part of AmeriCorps service program. I love working with Princeton’s children, and I am hoping that my story will inspire others to join me in this life-changing opportunity. 

I began serving at Princeton Primary School in the fall of 2019 because I had recently retired after thirty one years managing adults . I thought what better way to keep my mind sharp and help make a difference in my community. There’s nothing like watching a child’s eyes light up when they begin to see their own progress. Students who struggled before Reading Corps are now some of the top readers in their class, with the confidence to raise their hand and engage in discussions. Reading Corps works. It changes not only the student’s life, but also the tutors’ lives. 

Reading Corps tutors use data-driven one-on-one and small group instruction to get kids on track to read proficiently by third grade. Tutors work with kids daily in more than 700 elementary schools and preschools across the state, including Princeton. As a result of this individualized attention and encouragement, most students read at their grade level within one year. 

Tutors receive extensive training and support from on-site staff. We earn a living allowance, as well as a financial award for education or student loans which can be transferred to your children or grandchildren. Americorps also offers health care and child care assistance benefits. Along with opportunities to network and grow professionally. 

I encourage anyone who is interested in tutoring to visit the Minnesota Reading Corps website (www.minnesotareadingcorps.org) to find out more about the benefits and the independent research that shows the difference Reading Corps makes. You will also see inspiring testimonies from tutors, teachers and parents. I challenge you to discover if Reading Corps is right for you. 

Reading Corps truly changes lives. It has changed my life – and the lives of the young learners with whom I work. 

Eric Lindell 

Reading Corps Tutor 

Princeton Primary School 

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