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Developing Literacy Habits Through Peer Tutors

By Neng Gustini, lecturer at the Faculty of Education and Teaching at UIN Bandung

Developing Literacy Habits Through Peer Tutors
Students in small groups discuss books they have read.

BANDUNG, WEST JAVA – Based on an initial survey, the majority of students in the Faculty of Education and Teaching at UIN Bandung did not have good writing skills. This is partly caused by poor reading habits, which are a result of several factors. Firstly, the reading habit had never been passed on by their parents and grandparents. Secondly, the education system makes learners passive and just listen to the information. Thirdly, technology and entertainment distract children from reading books. Fourthly, there is a lack of books to read.

Therefore, there needs to be a model for developing reading and writing habits. The program I designed for my students is through peer tutoring. The implementation is as follows.

  1. DEAR (Drop Everything and Read). The program is carried out every day before the class begins in which both the lecturers and students read books they are interested in at the same time.
  2. ODOA (One Day One Article). Students get used to writing articles in a reading community.
  3. OMOB (One Month One Book). This activity is carried out in a reading and writing community called Kombis. It motivates students to read books and write a synopsis of the book they read and then discuss its content woth their peers.
  4. A reading and writing journal: activities are recorded in a daily or weekly journal recording the time spent reading and a review or a short summary of the books read.
  5. A reading and writing workshop where guidance is given: for example, it starts with assisting students in using mind maps. In reading, we start by ?nding the main idea of each paragraph, while in writing students start by making an outline of their work.
  6. Establishing a reading and writing community which has 15 members: they remind and reinforce each other about reading and writing through peer tutoring.

Six months after the program started, the results are as follows: (1) the establishment of the reading and writing community called Kombis among the students which has DEAR, ODOA, and OMOB programs, as well as reading and writing workshops; (2) students have become familiar with reading and writing and motivated to read and write through these programs. Every month students read between 2 and 6 books and write 5 to 10 articles on average, and as a group, they have published two books of articles.


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