Lunchtime Mentor Program 

Marissa Edelman, Featured Teacher and Club Corner Editor

Every Tuesday through Thursday at 2:30 and Fridays at 12:15, mentors join a Zoom call to socialize with the special education students at the high school. They participate in activities like Pictionary, Just Dance, Kahoot, arts and crafts, and listening to music. 

These activities with the mentors have had a great impact on the students. Mrs. DeMarco, who runs the program with students Leslie Pineda, Isabelle Cohen, Lily Stevens, Olivia Ridley and Marissa Edelman, reflected on the importance of this social outlet saying, “This year more than ever our students needed peer mentors to hang out with and to have fun playing games with. Not only has it given students an outlet to engage with peers but it has encouraged many to take a leadership role. Students who in the classroom may have been less likely to take the lead have built up the confidence to teach their peers a new craft or lead a game of Kahoot.” 

The interpersonal skills gained within the program has fostered an increase in happiness of these students. DeMarco referred to the program as a “lifeline” for these students. Remarking how parents have, “said that their child looks forward to attending the Mentor Lunch Group and it has given them an outlet to socialize in the virtual world.” Despite this being a memorably difficult year, the students have been impressively resilient. DeMarco sees the program as something that will allow the year to be remembered in a more positive light. 

This lunchtime program has also been a great program for mentors, as they are able to build on skills such as leadership, empathy, and patience. The volunteers are mostly from the Mentor Mountaineer program at the highschool, however, all students with interest are encouraged to participate. Those who join can choose the days that work best for their schedule, so come over and join! It will be worth your time.