Saturday mornings — a day of rest and relaxation for most – at the BL Perry library is where kids come to exercise their brain muscles.
Bright and early kids and volunteers flood the house of books to take part in the BL Perry Tutorials. Parents bring their kids to get help with their academic work or drop them off at a safe place while they run errands.
Volunteers rotate from Saturday to Saturday to accommodate the children who participate. Elementary to high school students are welcome in the two-hour tutoring session.
Three FAMU students are heavily invested in the BL Perry Tutorials, and Jelani Pitts is one of them.
“I love kids so it really brings me joy to know what I say to them and what I do with them has the ability to affect their lives in a positive way,” said Pitts.
The majority of the students are on the younger side—mainly second and third graders. Each carries their little backpacks and pencil cases. Some are ready to read, write or add while others are seen dragging in after a long week at school.
Although the tutoring services are open to everyone most of the kids at the library are minorities; African American and Muslim American.
Alexis Williams, a first-time volunteer, expressed her passion for the kids she encountered.
“This type of service is crucial to our black youth because some of them are not afforded the attention or extra care in their schools or at home that they receive during a tutoring session,” Williams said.
Yes, it is important for the kids to receive tutoring, but it’s just as important for the volunteers.
You could see some volunteers smiling as they remembered how they enjoyed a specific subject, or laughing as they reminisced on how awful they were at another.
Paired with little ones, volunteers try their best to further educate them on subject matters they have not seen in over 10 years at the least. But for these dedicated Rattlers it’s all worth it.
“It was an amazing opportunity. It enabled me to feel more committed to giving back to my community and share my knowledge with others to help them,” said Brehanna Jacobs.
The purpose of the BL Perry Tutorials is to delve more into the books, but you can’t let these kids study for an hour and a half and not let them have some fun too.
At the end of all the academic pleasure for some and dread for others it’s time for Bingo.
This lets students and volunteers alike to destress their hardworking brains. There is nothing like a little play after hard work.
The BL Perry Tutorials are from 10 a.m. to noon every Saturday at the B.L Perry public library, located on South Adams Street across from the main Post Office.