Racing Readers

Racing Readers is a program created in partnership with the Surrey School District and the SFU Surrey – TD Community Engagement Centre. This after-school program is designed to fill the need for an increased level of physical activity, literacy and numeracy skills among children in grades 2-5. Racing Readers will operate after school from October to June at:

  • Betty Huff Elementary School once per week on Tuesdays 2:30PM-4:30PM, and
  • Newton Elementary School once per week on Wednesdays 2:30PM-4:30PM

The program will seek to improve the well being of students in physical, educational, and social areas. Students will be lead through the program by high school and university student mentors who will foster companionship, support, and learning. Throughout the program, children will participate in physical activities, reading, writing and numeracy exercises, and will be served a healthy snack. At the end of the program, students will have the opportunity to celebrate their progress and success in both the physical and literacy aspects of the program.

The following is a sample daily schedule:

2:30pm - students arrive, attendance taken, team check-ins
2:40pm - word of the day discussion and writing in journals
3:00pm - circuit training / stretching / warm-up
3:10pm - games
3:25pm - running
3:55pm – snack
4:10pm - reading or numeracy activities
4:30pm - clean up / student dismissal
4:45pm – debrief

Learn more about the program by reading the following volunteer testimonials!

Racing Readers in the News!

Work with us

Have fun with kids AND help them learn!


Click to listen now.

Racing Readers: Making an impact

Episode description:

Strong literacy skills are one of the most important early indicators of high school graduation. Through third grade, children are learning to read. After third grade students are reading to learn. A strong start in reading thus creates a foundation for further learning and higher educational attainment. Since 2014, SFU’s Racing Readers program has facilitated this strong start through after school programming for children in the diverse and growing South Fraser community. An after-school reading program, Racing Readers connects university and elementary school students to promote literacy, numeracy and physical activity amongst children grades two to five. In this episode of Student Engage, we discuss the impact of the Racing Readers program with SFU Community Engagement Associate Trisha Dulku and Racing Reader program leader Balroop Chahal.

It’s a tangible way to actually see the impact that you make. I think it’s one thing to read reports and look at quantitative data about the impact that you can make in a community, it’s quite another to see that look of inspiration and gratitude in a child’s eyes.

Racing Readers: Creating Connection

Episode Description:

Making the connection between the classroom and the community, SFU’s Racing Readers program connects university and elementary school students through literacy and numeracy mentorship for students in grades two to five. Since 2014, the SFU volunteers have played an important role in providing a link to higher education and promoting a love of learning amongst the elementary school participants. In this episode of Student Engage, we discuss education, mentorship, and civic engagement with Racing Reader program volunteers Kimmy Basra and Hisham Wewala.

A lot of the students are Indo-Canadian, and a lot of the volunteers are as well. I think that it’s really cool for the students to see people that look like them in mentorship roles, that aren’t their teachers or their parents. It provides these kids with a positive role model.

Click to listen now.

Beyond the Podcast:

Interested in getting involved with your community? Learn more

Learn more about how your community is engaging the world by following the Student Engage podcast on SoundCloud.

Partner with: