The Crusader

Senior students read books to kindergarteners as part of new reading program

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A high school student reads a book to a kindergartener as part of the MW Reads program.

A high school student reads a book to a kindergartener as part of the MW Reads program.

A high school student reads a book to a kindergartener as part of the MW Reads program.

Reynord Pena, Contributing Writer

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In early December, four senior classes went to kindergarten classes in Sapphire and Smith Clove Elementary as a part of M-W Reads’ efforts to encourage students to read.

Seniors took any children’s book they were interested in or have read before to read to the kindergarteners. There were four classes of about twenty students each and each senior read to a kindergartener for up to an hour.

“It was cool,” said senior Julian Campofiori, a student in Ms. Caruso’s Literature of the Family course. “Most of the kids really look up to you.”

Campofiori chose to read The Pigeon Finds a Hot Dog by Mo Willems.

“I thought it was funny and simple,” said Campofiori, who added that the student he read to liked the book. The kindergarten students made bookmarks as gifts for the visiting seniors.

All participants were given a sheet of paper explaining the activity and the dates of the event. Parents also have a role in this activity: when their child comes home they can ask him or her to share their experience about the whole endeavor.

One group traveled to Sapphire Elementary on December 6, while another group traveled to Smith Clove Elementary the next day.

Teachers have fully embraced this new movement of engaging students in new reading activities to develop a love for reading in the district.

“The ultimate goal is for every student in the district to have a reading buddy,” said Smith Clove librarian Ms. Gardner.

“I think connections across grades is a good thing; younger students idolize the older students,” said High School English Department Chair, Ms. Bulla. “Younger students also help seniors to realize their lost passion for reading.”

This is only one of the many group events M-W Reads is trying to implement to influence kids to read all the time.

According to Ms. Bulla, she would like to see a culture shift where kids go from not reading to always having a book on hand to read if they have the chance.

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Senior students read books to kindergarteners as part of new reading program