In 2019, the Sathya Sai Centre of Central San Jose in California began offering math tutoring and computer programming classes to students at the Voices College-bound Language Academy, which is a primary school in a low-income area in Silicon Valley. The program serves elementary school children from first-generation Hispanic immigrant families and non-English speaking households. During spring 2019, the pilot program started with 14 volunteers and 27 students from 3rd and 4th grades, for a 6-week period. Each class covered a character-building discussion, math and elementary coding, team-building games, followed by a snack break.
As a result of the successful pilot program, there was an increase in the self-confidence and math competencies of the children. The program was enhanced in Fall 2019, by the use of a math-learning computerized program. As a reward for participation, a group of students and their parents were taken on a field trip to the Google campus. During the winter/spring 2020 session, the program continued online with an expanded pool of 50 students, and 27 volunteers. Reflecting on her experience, Ms. Bala, one of the volunteers said, “While math and coding started out as the basis for the program, we know that our true work involved sharing love and cultivating human values within the school community. This is what has allowed the program to… touch the hearts of students and volunteers alike.”
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