Reading Coaches for Kids

It only takes an hour a week to make a difference to a child!

Research shows that third graders who have proficient reading skills are nearly five times more likely to graduate high school than their peers who do not; yet in many of our area schools, 70% of third graders test below proficient for on-track readiness in English Language Arts.

Reading Coaches for Kids is a volunteer tutoring program designed to increase students’ reading abilities and academic success. Dedicated, caring volunteers provide consistency and educational support by working individually with students during the school day in K-5 classrooms throughout Brown County, helping them improve their reading skills.

Reading Coaches must pass a background check and are asked to commit to a minimum of one hour per week over the course of a school year. No educational background is needed; training and ongoing support are provided.

The Reading Coaches for Kids program is coordinated through the Retired & Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP) at the Volunteer Center of Brown County, but our tutors range in age from 18 to 90 years old. They’re connected by their desire to see kids succeed.

The Reading Coaches for Kids volunteer description can be found here.

Reflections from Reading Coaches

Reading Coaches for Kids is a perfect way to bridge generations! The relationships that I made with the children and staff enhanced my quality of life, as well as the students’. We all learned so much together!


It’s such a wonderful feeling to see the improvement and to work with a caring teacher.


It’s very rewarding to me as a volunteer Reading Coach to observe the student’s progress in their reading skills and to see them gain self-confidence.


After teaching middle school students science and language arts for over 20 years, coaching reading with first-graders was definitely a cultural shift. However, it was such a positive shift that I found myself looking forward to Thursday afternoons every week! I felt entirely embraced by the students, the teacher, and the learning environment at the school I was assigned. No matter the baseline abilities of the students I worked with, I was able to see growth in the time I spent with them, which made coaching reading a worthwhile and rewarding experience!


Reflections from Teachers

The students looked forward to their weekly visits and it was a huge benefit to have them give some of the students who needed that extra support a little more one-on-one time each week.


I LOVED my reading coaches this year! The volunteer especially works so well with the students. She was consistent and dependable.


The volunteer is very easy to connect with for adults and children. She always came in with a smile and left with “see you next week.”


The volunteers are a great asset to a school. They build positive relationships with the students they are working with, in addition to building their reading skills.


It’s great to involve community members in their neighborhood school.


Interested in Being a Reading Coach?

Reading Coaches trainings are scheduled on an ongoing basis and take place at the Volunteer Center of Brown County, located at 984 9th Street in Green Bay.

There are no upcoming trainings scheduled at this time. Please check back as plans for future trainings evolve.

Reading Coaches training

To complete an application, please click on the link in the appropriate box below. Then follow these steps:

  • Download the form and save it to your computer (the desktop is a good place).
  • Open it from the saved location, complete all fields, and again save to your computer (replace the original one you downloaded).
  • Email the completed application to Reading Coaches Coordinator Nancy Pfankuch or print it out and mail to:
    • Volunteer Center of Brown County
      Attn: Nancy Pfankuch
      984 9th Street
      Green Bay, WI 54304

Monthly Meetings (optional) and Additional Resources

Reading Coaches monthly meeting

These meetings for Reading Coaches allow you to learn more about how to support, guide, and encourage young readers. The dates are to be determined, but meetings often take place in the late afternoon.

We’ll expore different topics each month. These sessions are also a time to gather with other Reading Coaches, ask questions, brainstorm ideas, problem-solve, and celebrate progress.

We understand not every volunteer can attend optional monthly meetings, so you will find some helpful free resources below. Click the links to explore more literacy resources.

Reading Coaches Teaching Tool Bag

The Reading Coaches for Kids program received a generous grant from the Greater Green Bay Community Foundation. With some of these grant dollars, we purchased teaching tools to support Reading Coaches in their volunteer work with children.

Greater Green Bay Community Foundation Logo

Donate Books to the Reading Coaches for Kids Program

Achieve Brown County’s Reading Success VISTA, Daisie Mathias, visited the Volunteer Center of Brown County office in July to drop off a large book donation for our Reading Coaches for Kids program. Thanks to Daisie for her generosity!

We are always looking for donations of new or gently used children’s books to share with the children of our community. Contact Reading Coaches Coordinator Nancy Pfankuch if you would like to donate new or gently used children’s books. You can also visit our Amazon Wishlist to directly purchase children’s books to donate to our program and know that your gifts are greatly appreciated!

Daisie Mathias and Nancy Pfankuch

“One of the greatest gifts adults can give to their offspring and to their society is to read to children.”

Carl Sagan

“Reading is a gift. It’s something you can do almost anytime and anywhere. It can be a tremendous way to learn, relax, and even escape.”

Richard Carlson

Forms for Current Volunteers

(includes the Volunteer Center’s travel policy)

Download, fill out on your computer, and email to us
or print out, fill out by hand, and mail to us.

Download, fill out on your computer, and email to us
or print out, fill out by hand, and mail to us.