November – December 2015 Volunteer Opportunities

Opportunities to volunteer for classroom programs are below. No experience or training is necessary to work with K-12 students as a writing or research coach, art assistant, or field trip supervisor. 

If you haven’t volunteered with us before, please complete our brief application to become a member of our team.

To sign up for an opportunity, reply to volunteer@behindthebook.org with the program code(s) and date(s) in which you’d like to participate. Once you’ve been confirmed, you’re all set to volunteer! The programming coordinator will follow up a few days before each date with details about the curriculum and your role as a volunteer. You will also receive directions to the school and where to meet before you go into the classroom. Please contact volunteer@behindthebook.org if you have to cancel.

Remember, new programs are always being added and programs can fill quickly. Currently we’re most in need of volunteers at our Brooklyn programs, and our Marthe Jocelyn program in Harlem. Once you’ve completed our volunteer application you’ll receive announcements by email and we also send updates through Twitter and Facebook


Program 98DR11

Author: Doreen Rappaport
Books: No More! Stories and Songs of Slave Resistance & Escape from Slavery
Location: Inwood
Date/Time/Role 2: Monday, December 21st – 9:00 -10:30 AM (art assistants)

Fifth-grade Special Education students will read two books by Doreen, then write and illustrate biographies of people from the same era. They’ll learn how to conduct research, prioritize and organize information, and put it in essay form, as well as proofread and edit.

Program DLW12

Authors: Liz Welch, Caitlin Alifirenka & Martin Ganda
Book: I Will Always Write Back
Location: Lower East Side, Manhattan
Date/Time/Role: Wednesday, December 16th – 2:00 – 3:30 PM (writing coaches)

This ninth-grade English Language Learners class read the true story of an American girl who writes to a boy in Zimbabwe, forging a life-changing friendship. Students learned interview techniques, with a focus on turning another perspective into a sensory-rich personal account, to write vignettes about their lives before and after their moves to the U.S.

Program 241SA12

Author: Selina Alko
Book: The Case for Loving
Location: Crown Heights, Brooklyn
Date/Time/Role: Friday, December 18th – 9:00 – 10:30 AM (writing coaches)

Fifth-graders studying U.S. human rights laws will describe how the laws address a chosen human right, what change has been realized, and improvements they’d make. A visiting human rights lawyer will answer their questions. Students will also create paintings to represent their work.

Program 154LCR12

Author: Lesa Cline-Ransome
Book: Freedom’s School
Location: Harlem
Date/Time/Role:  Tuesday, December 22nd – 9:00 – 10:30 AM (writing coaches)

This fifth-grade special education class is reading about Lizzie and her brother, who get to attend school after slavery is abolished. The students will write about a goal of their own, their plans to achieve it, and ways to overcome obstacles in the process.

Program 154BF11

Author: Brian Floca
Book: Moonshot: The Flight of Apollo 11
Location: Harlem
Date/Time/Role: Tuesday, December 22nd – 9:00 – 10:30 AM (writing coaches)

In a study of space travel, this fourth-grade class will research and write about different space flights, the astronauts’ missions and jobs. They’ll also write about their own mission to a planet with life forms similar to humans. What gifts they would bring to represent earth?