• Volunteer Information 
     
    All volunteers are required to stop at the office to sign in and pick up a badge.  Please sign-out and drop off the badge when you’re finished working.  - Thank You!
     
    Michigan Center Schools teachers and staff have adopted the “Nurtured Heart Approach” philosophy for addressing student behavior.  It is a positive discipline program designed to help student’s correct poor behavior and make better choices toward success.  
     
    General Information 
    Thank  you for wanting to be a volunteer at a Michigan Center School.  There are many opportunities for volunteers to work in our schools to assist our students and staff. Each building's office staff will assist you with the volunteer application process. 
    • The duties of volunteers are many and varied.  You may listen to individual children read, work with them on computers, or work with them in a specific subject in which they are experiencing difficulty.  You may help out classrooms with art projects, update bulletin boards,  help organize classroom holiday parties, or chaperone a field trip.  Perhaps you have a special hobby or occupation you’d be able to share with the students. 
    • Be sure to tell the teacher for whom you are assisting what days and hours you are available.  If you are unable to make the time you committed to please let that teacher know as soon as possible.  Please do not show up unannounced. 
    • Please maintain our students’ confidentiality and do not discuss matters that happen in the classroom with anyone other than the classroom teacher or principal.
    Authority 
        As a school volunteer, your authority is limited.  If a rule has been established by any staff member (teachers, aides, secretary, principal) please do not change or bend that rule.  If one of the above persons has given a direction to a child, you must abide by it and not “undo” it whether it be your child or someone else’s child. 
        If a problem with a child arises, especially a behavior problem, refer it immediately to the teacher or aide to handle it.  Please do not do any correcting or disciplining. 
     
    Golden Rules for Volunteers 
    • Remember that children are individuals and should be permitted/encouraged to be themselves. 
    • Encourage and praise effort.  Trying is an important part of learning.  When a child fails, let him/her know it is okay to fail. 
    • Let the child know it’s okay to make mistakes.  Children learn from their mistakes; adults do too! 
    • Help the child find an acceptable outlet for anger, hostility, or frustration. 
    • Allow the teacher to be the final authority.  When a child breaks a classroom rule, follow the classroom consequences per the teacher’s direction. 
    • Notice when a child accomplishes a task and is proud.  Celebrate successes! 
    • Allow the child to experience some disappointment and/or adversity.  Problem solving facilitates character building and self discipline. 
    When Working with Children at School 
    · Before starting any activity, explain what you are going to do. 
    · Give the child time to familiarize him/herself with the materials, the books, the paper, etc. 
    · Ask questions pertinent to the subject as you go along. 
    · Encourage children to answer questions in complete sentences.  Allow children the time to explain or expand upon their answers. 
    · Encourage the children to ask questions. 
    · Give the child adequate time to think about an answer.  Don’t be too quick to jump in and help.  Discourage random and frequent guessing. 
    · When the child is doing well, encourage him/her to continue to do well. 
    · When a child’s answer or work is wrong.  Let him/her know, but only in a neutral, non-threatening manner. 
    · Ask questions that require more than one word responses. 
     
    Ethics 
    • Volunteers are expected to adhere to the same ethics as the staff in the building. 
    • Never carry any stories, gossip or reports beyond the classroom or environment in which the incident occurred. 
    • Dress in a respectable manner.  Watch what the staff is wearing.  Avoid clothing that is too tight, too revealing, or not clean. 
    • Use proper language and grammar.  Children quickly pick up our speaking habits. 
    • Be careful about touching children.  Unfortunately, friendly hugs, pats, etc. may be misinterpreted. 
    • No smoking on school grounds or on field trips. 
    • Please leave your other children, young or old, at home.  This is a perfect time for you to share with one child at a time. 
    • Please turn cell phones off or put into silent mode while in the building.