VOICES

Our program for teaching the English language

VOICES helps English Language Learners and newcomers to the U.S. grasp a stronger understanding of the English language in an engaging and supportive environment. Through hands-on tutoring, group discussions, and creative composition assignments, students have the opportunity to expand their English skills while developing an interest in reading and writing.

VOICES IS BASED ON OUR STATE’S ENGLISH LEARNING STANDARDS AND INCORPORATES BOTH ORAL AND WRITTEN COMMUNICATION BASED ON STUDENTS’ INTERESTS. HERE’S WHAT MAKES VOICES UNIQUE:

Programs Meets two days per week after school

VOICES is held at Harrisonburg High School, Thomas Harrison Middle School, and Skyline Middle Schools. Classes are led by certified Harrisonburg City Schools teachers and On the Road Youth Leaders, who work together to create a safe space for youth to grow in their English literacy and share their experiences learning a new language and adapting to a new culture.

Youth get to take field trips each year

During VOICES, our youth have the opportunity to take field trips that build community engagement while helping our youth expand their understanding of and interest in writing, poetry, and drama. Past field trips have included visiting museums in Washington D.C., seeing “The Nutcracker” in Richmond, visiting Massanutten Regional Library, and attending a Poetry Slam at Eastern Mennonite University.

The program ends with a Learning Showcase

Each year, VOICES concludes with a culminating Learning Showcase in the community where youth release their published book, which highlights the writings that the youth have done throughout the year. Each year, the book includes a beautiful collection of poems, opinion pieces, and essays from writers representing various nations. Check out last year’s “Our Voices” book here!

Eamon poses for a photo in an On the Road t-shirt

“This program impacts students whose first language is not English by allowing them to make new friends and by teaching them new vocabulary. Voices is a safe place where I can express myself without being judged. I have also learned how to put my creativity and imagination into words by writing stories, and my feelings by writing poetry. Voices has become another family to me.”

— Melissa, VOICES youth

 

Interested in joining VOICES?

Email Deanna Reed, Director of Community and School Partnerships, for more information and questions: [email protected]

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