Merry Tutor’s free services pay off in ‘aha’ moments, founder says

Excerpt from the Naperville Sun by Jane Donahue

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Jane Boettcher began her learning career in a “multi-grade level classroom” when she attended a Montessori school and then as a student in Naperville School District 203’s Project IDEA Plus magnet program at Steeple Run Elementary and Kennedy Junior High.

“Having that environment, especially when I was younger, allowed me to look to my older classmates for advice,” said Boettcher, 16. “And when I got older, (I had the opportunity to) give advice myself.”

Having seen the firsthand benefits of peer-to-peer learning, Boettcher created The Merry Tutor in 2013. Today, the free, student-led tutoring organization serves more than 100 students in Naperville, Aurora and Bolingbrook.

“The number one thing I love about being a tutor – and this is something I’m always hearing from my tutors – is witnessing that ‘aha moment’ when you can see things click in the student’s head,” said Boettcher, now a junior at Naperville North High School.

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