Golden Apple: Reading Is The Thing To Do At Baxter Elementary
A new program at Baxter Elementary School kicked off this week that encourages students to read not only for school assignments, but for fun as well.
“We are so excited because reading is our thing this year. This is what we really want to promote. We want to get kids and families excited about reading, reading every day for enjoyment, coming to school excited to share what they’re reading about,” said Kacee Barrett, a Reading Intervention Teacher at Baxter Elementary.
The “Reading is the Thing To Do” program was started last summer and officially kicked off this week.
“We know that literacy is important. We know that reading is the basis for most of the other subjects out there, and we know that we want to gather excitement for our students to read for pleasure and not always just for assignment[s],” explained Baxter Elementary School Principal Tammy Stellmach.
On Monday, the elementary school held a program to kick off “Reading is the Thing To Do” where students were awarded for the reading they accomplished over the summer.
“We had students, everybody got a “Thing” shirt representative of their grade level and we got together, celebrated all the reading that happened over the summer and talked about the great activities that we have planned for the year this year,” added Barrett.
The year-long reading program will bring new ideas and a new emphasis on reading for fun to the school. A part of the program is that there will be random “reading is the thing to do” moments where the whole school will drop whatever they are doing to read.
“Everyone across the board, staff included, will stop what they’re doing and it will be ‘reading is the thing to do,’ and we’ll pull out our books and we will read,” said Stellmach.
Another part of the program will pair classes of different grade levels together for buddy reading days.
“Two classrooms will get together and the kids can read books together kind of in that partnership,” added Stellmach. “Again, a way just to spark interest and to promote excitement among the students.”
Through the program, the school hopes to exemplify that reading can be fun and not just something that has to be done for school.
“I think the biggest thing is just getting the kids excited about reading and wanting to come to school and say, “I’ve been reading this book, it’s so great,” and sharing the excitement, the love of reading the joy of reading for fun,” added Barrett. “Not just for assignments.”
The program is sponsored by the Baxter Elementary Parent Teacher Organization, which bought the “Thing” shirts for every student in the school.