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Volunteer Development

volunteer development

Professional Development


Inspiring Minds volunteers must complete an orientation prior to service. The two-hour orientation covers our approach to tutoring and mentoring and reinforces the policies and protocols in place to protect children.

Our approach: Inspiring Minds views tutoring as the direct and clearly defined work to support the students’ academic skill development and mentoring as the more indirect work aimed at cultivating caring positive relationships which will boost student confidence and promote academic achievement.

Mentoring: Volunteers are trained in relationship building skills that help to develop close connections with students through which young people discover who they are, gain skills to shape their own lives, and learn how to interact and contribute to the world around them. Our volunteers are trained in the Search Institutes’ evidence-based Developmental Relationships Framework. Within each tutor-student relationship, the volunteer is focused on the following relationship goals: Expressing care, challenging growth, providing support, sharing power, and expanding possibilities.

Tutoring: Volunteers are provided with a brief orientation to standards utilized by teachers in Providence Public Schools. The outcome is that volunteers are clear that standards are the expectations of what students should know and be able to do by grade level. We begin with an overview of the five components of literacy and the eight standards of mathematical practice. Inspiring Minds volunteers are trained to facilitate learning by asking questions. They support students through simple problem-solving skills that are designed to promote independent thinking.

Our problem-solving process includes: Define the problem, Think about it, Plan a solution, Carry out the plan, Look back.

All volunteers review district policies and protocols relevant to their service in Providence Schools, including the Internet Acceptable Use Policy, the Code of Conduct, and Mandatory Reporting Protocols.

Ongoing Professional Development for Volunteers

Inspiring Minds is a volunteer organization and we are committed to ensuring all volunteers are prepared for service and receive ongoing professional development.

Each month, we host a new workshop to support volunteers based on their needs. Please check out our calendar for upcoming workshops.

Inspiring MInds is part of the MentorRI network of programs and our volunteers also have access to ongoing professional development opportunities offered through MentorRI.