- Sponsorship -

Reading Windfall: Schools Passing Out Free Books for Elementary Students

The holiday season will bring books, books and more books to Wyoming Public Schools elementary buildings.

Oriole Park and Parkview elementary schools each is receiving a big delivery of enough copies for all students of the 2014 Michigan Reads! Book of the Year, “Acoustic Rooster and his Barnyard Band.” The schools were recently awarded the books through Michigan Department of Education’s Culture of Reading program.Source: Reading is Fundamental

Plus, books from the nonprofit children’s literacy organization Reading Is Fundamental, funded through a $10,000 grant from Macy’s department store corporation, has provided Wyoming Intermediate, Parkview, West and Gladiola elementary schools free books. Kindergarten through second-grade students are receiving three books each, and pre-kindergarten and third- through fifth-grade students two apiece, said Danielle Vigh, the district’s academic support manager. Districts qualifying for the RIF grant have free and reduced lunch populations of 80 percent or higher.

Kevin Elliott turns the pages

“This is very important so our students have access to quality reading materials and reading materials in general, and get into the habit of taking the time to read,” said Superintendent Tom Reeder, who hopes students learn to pick up a book for fun instead of always turning to other leisure activities. “Our community must continue to foster and develop good habits.”

Students in second-grade teacher Lori Schimmelmann’s class settled under the classroom Christmas tree with their books in hand. “I like it because Mrs. Schimmelmann thought it was going to be a paper book, but it’s a real (hard-covered) book,” said student London Turner.

“So many of these kids don’t have books at home and to get this nice hard-covered book is like, ‘wow,’” added Schimmelmann.

Fostering a ‘Culture of Reading’

Other district efforts to promote reading include Little Free Library house-shaped boxes stationed outside schools, with free books inside for the community to grab. Students are keeping reading logs, working to reach a weekly goal of minutes spent reading for fun. A districtwide committee is focused on school and community reading projects.

The state’s Culture of Reading program is distributing 3,000 copies of this year’s chosen book to 115 Michigan elementary classrooms and early childhood programs. It is the first award allocated through the program. Approximately 740 elementary school and early childhood programs applied for the grant.

Awards were granted on the basis of meeting grant criteria, including a commitment to providing the children with evidence-based reading instruction and family engagement activities focused on literacy. 

“Kids will be getting their own books and reading instruction to help them on theirway to a lifetime of learning and reading for enjoyment,” State Superintendent Mike Flanagan said in a press release.

Parkview Elementary second-grade students Solymar Lopez-Argueta, Joselyn Sanchez-Rodriguez, Vanessa Matildez-Rodriguez and Juan Jimenez-Hernandez read their copies of the 2014 Michigan Reads! Book of the Year“There are too many people, including children and adults, who cannot read,” Flanagan added. “We need that to change. To help build a culture of reading in Michigan, we need to get books in their hands and in their homes.”

CONNECT

Culture of Reading grant program

Reading is Fundamental program

- Sponsorship -
Erin Albanese
Erin Albanese
Erin Albanese is associate managing editor and reporter, covering Byron Center, Kentwood, Wyoming and Grand Rapids Community College. She was one of the original SNN staff writers, helping launch the site in 2013 and enjoys fulfilling the mission of sharing the stories of public education. She has worked as a journalist in the Grand Rapids area since 2000. A graduate of Central Michigan University, she has written for The Grand Rapids Press, Advance Newspapers, On-the-Town Magazine and Group Tour Media. Read Erin's full bio or email Erin.

LATEST ARTICLES

Vaccine trial participant: ‘I really want to get back to normal’

Orchestra teacher and cellist Eric Hudson longs for the days when he can direct student musicians in concerts and tours and play in his own ensemble once again. To help speed that process along, he is participating in a COVID-19 vaccine trial...

Longtime agriscience teacher earns honorary FFA degree

After 24 years of teaching, John Schut believes incorporating fun and service into education is more engaging for students than taking notes in a classroom...

Stress, studies and the pandemic: a steep learning curve

In response to the social and emotional impacts brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic, Rockford’s Developing Healthy Kids Campaign wants students and families to know they are not alone...

Health Department helps schools tackle challenges of instruction, during winter, in a pandemic

Working with the health department has been crucial in helping area school leaders understand the nature of COVID-19, the types of mitigation strategies that can be most effective and how to plan for the future...

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Related Articles

Babysitting an apple

Ninth-graders wrote apple adventures during the weeklong “35 Ways to Babysit an Apple” project in English teacher Jeremy Schnotala’s class. The writing project inspires creative narratives and lots of drama...

Class of 2021 has ‘test-optional’ choice when applying for college

Most schools in the state of Michigan have become SAT/ACT-optional for the Class of 2021 for admission purposes. There are, however, pros and cons for students...

Schools in nine districts announce closures as COVID cases spike

New temporary school building closures were announced by nine school districts in Kent ISD this week, as schools contend with a sharp increase in COVID-19 cases in Kent County and Michigan...
- Sponsorship -

HOW'S SCHOOL TODAY?

Engagement: The Most Important Measure of Student Success

Polls find that students’ engagement in their school work declines as they ascend the grades. Tests that don’t relate to their real-life experiences exacerbate the problem...

RADEMACHER & FRIENDS

Food ‘angels’ support hungry kids through pandemic

They work all across Kent County, guardian angels with peanut butter on their hands and crumbs on their shirtsleeves...
- Sponsorship -

MEDIA PARTNERS

Maranda Where You LiveWGVU

SUSTAINING SPONSORS