Join Team Read


Stay tuned for fall applications! New teen coach applications for Fall 2024-25 will be open soon! Returning coach applications for current and former coaches will open on Thursday, May 9, 2024.

Our Students

Team Read supports second and third grade students (and fourth grade where available) who are not yet reading at grade level. Students are referred into the program by their classroom teacher, or other staff at their school, early in the academic year. They meet with their teen coaches after school two times per week, beginning in November through mid-May. The program is free for referred students.

Team Read helps student readers:

  • Build confidence in reading
  • Gain vocabulary
  • Develop reading comprehension
  • Read more fluently
  • Strengthen phonetic skills

Our Coaches

Former Team Read reading coach Will Hunt said it best: “Team Read is a place where teens are valued because they are teens.” Teens bring energy, creativity, compassion, and commitment to their work as the reading coaches of our young readers.

As coaches, the teens work one-on-one with the students by:

  • Modeling great reading with read-alouds
  • Growing students’ vocabulary through work on phonics and recognizable “sight words”
  • Asking questions that encourage reading comprehension
  • Playing literacy games
  • Developing fluency through reading “just right” books
  • Building friendships that boost confidence
  • Sharing their love of reading

Why should I be a reading coach?

Our reading coaches tell us that they gain as much from the program as their students do, including:

  • Learning how to teach young children basic reading skills
  • Building job skills, such as communication, patience, responsibility, and the ability to work with all kinds of people
  • Developing patience, self-confidence, and a sense of accomplishment
  • Building their work and college resumes
  • Being considered for promotions; each year, we promote outstanding reading coaches to be site assistants.
  • Receiving hourly pay or earning service learning hours (Seattle only) 
  • Gaining leadership skills through our volunteer Ambassador Program, where coaches can connect and support their peers, increase public awareness of the program and offer ideas for program development.

On request, Team Read staff members provide letters of recommendation for scholarship applications, college applications, and job references.

Are you qualified to be a coach?

Every coach must possess the following qualifications:

  • Have a strong interest in helping a younger student become a better reader
  • Be a good role model for younger students
  • Read and communicate clearly in English (speaking one or more languages in addition to English is a bonus!)
  • Demonstrate a commitment to academics and the importance of reading
  • Be a student in 9th-12th grade (open to 8th-grade volunteers in Seattle only)
  • Possess a good attendance record (no more than seven unexcused absences during the previous school year)
  • Be able to secure two references from teachers or other school personnel
  • Be able to guarantee program attendance and participation two days each week for at least a full semester