Spotlight: Angela Allen, Small Group Activity Leader This our second in the series of interviews and articles to get to know PTA funded programs better. This year Crocker has 458 kids in the school with an average class sizes ranging from 24-30 kids in each classroom. Small Group Facilitators are hired by the PTA to support the teachers across our classrooms based on needs and requests. Interview with Small Group Activity Leader, Angela Allen: Q: What is your role at Crocker? Angela: I have a few roles at Crocker. As a Small Group Activity Leader, I help teachers and students in classrooms, I am one of the noon duty supervisors at lunch, I am one of the Reading Lab teachers, and I run the after school math program twice a week. Q: How many hours do you work and how do you spend it? Angela: I work all day Monday through Thursday and lunches only on Fridays. I work in the following classrooms in a given week: Schane, O’Brien, Bernstein, Schwab, Kantrowitz, and Graffius. On Tuesdays and Thursdays, I run the math after-school program for grades 1-5. There I support students’ self-paced learning on Chromebooks for an hour and provide a healthy snack. (1st & 2nd grade students work for 30 minutes then are given puzzles and art supplies for the remaining 30 minutes) Q: Please describe an average day in your role. Angela: On an average day, I enter classes with students in the morning and support them and the teachers any way I can. At times it’s keeping students on task as I circulate through the room, other times I might correct homework, lead a group in another activity, assist students with classwork, fluency testing, etc. When Reading Lab begins, I am one of up to three adults working with small groups of 1st and 2nd graders to increase their reading skills. At lunch, I put out the bins for lunch boxes and carry a supply of forks and spoons. As the kids have lunch, I encourage “strong” food first (with kindergarten and 1st graders) and remind all grades to remain in their seats while eating and respect personal space. Recess duty varies each day but generally involves conflict resolution, Band-aids, ice, and general supervision. After students have lunch and recess, I have lunch, then I return to supporting teachers and students in classrooms until the end of the day. Tuesdays and Thursdays I run an after-school math program for 1st-5th grade from 3-4pm. Q: What do you like about what you do? Angela: It’s hard to state briefly what I like about my job, but I’ll try. I love the kids. Their unfiltered joy and curiosity are a big part of what I look forward to each day. I was a Crocker parent for 8 years and it became like my second home. I love the teachers. They’ve never failed to make me feel valued and appreciated. I live down the street, so I love the idea that I support and work at my neighborhood public school. Q: Can you give me an example of how what you do has made an impact on a kid or kids at Crocker? Angela: I’m hoping I have a positive impact on the kids every day. It’s certainly my goal. I’d like to think the students trust me to keep them safe, resolve their issues kindly and fairly, and help them any way I can (academically or personally), whether it’s keeping them focused in class or providing one-on-one support. Q: Anything else worth mentioning that families might be interested in knowing? Angela: Each year I’m an overnight chaperone at the Crocker Student Sleepover and I help students prepare to compete in the annual Oratorical Fest. Thanks to all who support the PTA to keep Angela Allen and our other Small Group Activity leaders employed through the PTA. To keep this and our many other wonderful programs running, please donate to the PTA through Annual Giving. Any amount helps!