Coca-Cola Valued Youth Program

Marely García – 2018 First Place Middle School Essay Winner

IDRA Coca-Cola Valued Youth Program – 2018 Essay Contest

Marely García

7th Grade, Trevino Middle School, La Joya ISD, Texas

Tutors are here to help kids learn, understand and grow academically. Ever since I started tutoring, I learned more about how younger kids accomplish tasks they are given. I have two young siblings and one of them is four years old, which is the same age my tutees are. By working and interacting with them, I was able to understand the ways they learn faster. This helped me teach my little sister, which made my parents proud of me. Also since I became a tutor, I learned to be more responsible. For example, I help my parents with my siblings; turn in all of my unfinished work and save money. Since we get paid for tutoring, I had to learn to save the money I earned. My parents would also help me with that because they wouldn’t let me waste money after I got to a certain amount.

My tutees also taught me to be patient because not all students work at the same level. Before I started tutoring, I would easily get frustrated with people who worked too slow or too fast, wouldn’t understand what was told to them, or needed instructions to be repeated more than once. It was also extremely hard for me to work with smaller children, because I would easily become impatient with them. After I started tutoring, everything changed. I learned to work and be patient with younger students. I also became more understanding and helpful toward my peers and siblings. Being a tutor has showed me that not only do we teach our tutees, but they also teach us and help us mature.

Even though we get paid to tutor them, I would gladly do it for free. The reason for that is that I’ve learned so many different things from my tutees and this experience. I love helping these kids learn while at the same time they give me an understanding of how everyone works differently. Another thing I love about this tutoring program is that now my tutees are showing progress in their test scores. Their teacher is also extremely happy about me going to tutor them because they are better behaved and excited about attending school.

Thanks to the Coca-Cola Valued Youth Program I was able to experience these amazing changes within myself. My tutees are wonderful students to work with, and they are also very intelligent. I’m glad I was chosen to be in this program because it has made me a better person. I hope that these students I’m tutoring remember this opportunity that was given to them so that they will be the best they can be in the future.


See color highlights flier for 2018 (pdf).

See the booklet with all the winning essays from 2018 (pdf).

The Coca-Cola Valued Youth Program, created by IDRA, is an internationally-recognized cross-age tutoring program. According to the Valued Youth creed, all students are valuable, none is expendable. The lives of more than 718,000 children, families and educators have been positively impacted by the program.