Tutor Corner January/February 2023

Valentines Day envelopeWow, I can’t believe the second semester is already approaching! All of our active tutors now have their assigned schools and students – 56 volunteer tutors supporting approximately 100 students!!! It’s been a rough pandemic but we are now trending in the right direction and continue to receive interest from the community regarding tutoring.

Oasis Resource Library Catalog

Gray catAs many of you know we are moving towards an electronic catalog for our Oasis Resource Room – this allows tutors to search books from their personal device at home (or in-person at Oasis), similar to what most public and school libraries already use. Our new system is called Tiny Cat (…no cats were hurt in the process).
As with any system change, the conversion process can feel a bit overwhelming at first – please reach out if you need support navigating this new system or watch the tutorial videos below!

Searching for a Book

Checking Out a Book

Please note that in addition to using Oasis’ books you can now check out books from the media center at your assigned school! Woot-woot!

Featured Topic and Book

Illustration of kids playing in the snowIt’s the time of year many kids are wishing for snow! To celebrate the possibility of snow we’re featuring the book “In the Snow: Who’s Been Here?”

**Please keep in mind while snow can be exciting for many kids it’s best practice to be sensitive to students who have never ventured out in the snow. There could be many reasons for this, such as not having access to appropriate (costly) clothing/boots, maybe not having an adult to take them out or cultural reasons.

Book: In The Snow: Who’s Been Here?

Reading Strategy/Topic to go along with this book: using text features to support reading.

Many books have text features such as captions, pictures, maps, etc. to help the reader bring meaning to text. The beginning of our featured book below has a map. Have the student follow this map throughout the reading and discuss how the map helped you/them understand the book.

You can find this book in our Oasis Resource room. Check out an online reading at the link below.

Animal tracksWhat other supporting activities can you use with this book?

  • Bring a map of the school (usually available in the office). Discuss how maps can be used as tools for understanding. Use the school map to walk with the child and find an identified destination.
  • Use the chart text feature in the back of the book to learn about each animal. What do they all have in common?
  • Pair “In the Snow: Who’s Been Here?” with the “Life Sized Animal Tracks” book (also available in our library). Use the second book to look up the tracks of the animals mentioned in the first book. This books has tons of text features to point out – table of contents, maps, pictures, captions and even some bonus math – real life size of footprints.

Important Oasis and School Updates

Coffee Mug with a HeartMCPS Important Dates:

  • January 16th – NO SCHOOL (MLK holiday)
  • January 27th – NO SCHOOL (professional day)
  • February 14th – Valentines Day (School IS in session – please check about your schedule; many schools have class parties. Students should not miss celebrations for tutoring)
  • February 20th – NO SCHOOL (Presidents’ Day)
  • March 3rd – HALF DAY – Please check with your school regarding your schedule
  • March 15th – HALF DAY – Please check with your school regarding your schedule
  • March 31st – April 10th – NO SCHOOL (Spring Break)

MCPS Important Elementary Reading Update:

This school year MCPS is implementing a new reading curriculum, Really Great Reading, with Kindergarten – 2nd Grade. This new curriculum follows a ‘structured literacy’ approach and emphasizes phonics instruction as the foundation of all reading.

Please check out the home connection page HERE. You can find lots of activities for your learner!


Love letter

Wishing all of you a wonderful 2023! Thank you for your time and dedication to supporting students in our community. You are appreciated.