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Wii Chiiwaakanak’s Homework Club

e-dition - January 12, 2007

Wii Chiiwaakanak’s Homework Club:
Helping Community Members Succeed at School

By Brenda Suderman

Chemistry and pre-calculus used to give Manuel Santana a huge headache until he stumbled onto The University of Winnipeg’s Homework Club.

“I was lost, I was in deep trouble before these guys came to my rescue,” explained the student at Red River College Adult Learning Centre. “I was looking everywhere for tutors but they were so expensive. I was walking by and just saw it.”

As coordinator of the University’s Wii Chiiwaakanak Learning Centre, Christine Boyes hopes more people like Santana will find homework help at the Centre.

“The Homework Club allows members of our community to receive tutoring they require to meet their academic challenges head on and succeed in school,” she said. “We welcome students of all ages and at all levels to come as often as they wish – we want to see them achieve.”

Equipped with 18 computer stations available to community members, Wii Chiiwaakanak recently expanded its after school Homework Club to five days. Two afternoons a week, University of Winnipeg students offer specialized help in math and science, and general studies help is available the other days.

Although he has a busy schedule juggling his biochemistry courses and three part-time jobs, University of Winnipeg Science student Zaid Aboud makes it a priority to spend two afternoons a week at Wii Chiiwaakanak to help adult learners like Santana or junior and senior high school students needing math or science tutoring.

“Sometimes they don’t understand specific problems,” says Aboud, who will explain problems on the centre’s blackboard. “Sometimes Grade 7 kids stay as long as I’m here and I just walk them home when I walk home.”

For the 45-year-old Santana, who plans on studying architectural technology once he completes his high school credits next spring, Wii Chiiwaakanak Learning Centre’s Homework Club means the difference between struggling with four hours of homework each night and mastering it.

“This program is very helpful,” the native of Colombia says. “It’s good for the students as well as the people they help because they’re practicing their skills.”

The Homework Club hours are 4:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. Tuesday through Friday and 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. Saturday at Wii Chiiwaakanak Learning Centre, 509-511 Ellice Avenue. Math and science homework help is available on Tuesday and Thursday. University of Winnipeg students interested in volunteering at the Wii Chiiwaakanak Learning Centre Homework Club may contact Christine Boyes at c.boyes@uwinnipeg.ca

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