Reading was a family affair for the Silver Crest Elementary School community during the recent Love of Reading Month. The featured “book in common” for all grades K through 8 was Because of Winn-Dixie.
“Thanks to a donation from the family of one of our former teachers, every student received a copy of the book and they enjoyed reading in groups and had chapters assigned to read at home with family members,” said Silver Crest Elementary School Principal Jamie McCarty. “Our older students were also reading buddies to the younger kids and that was impactful for everyone.”
Reading buddies made a difference
“It was really fun and good to watch them learn the words and be more confident. Then when they see you in school, they wave and you feel like you’re actually helping them,” said Emma Laugle, grade 6, about her experience as a reading buddy.
“It was a lot of fun and we got to know and interact with them and help them understand. You realize they are really intelligent,” said Tristan Allen, grade 7.
Briley Bergerson, grade 6, who transferred to Silver Crest Elementary School recently, is an experienced buddy reader because she reads to her Kindergarten brother at home often said she would like to do more buddy reading at school.
“Me and my partner just got comfortable with each other so it would be fun to keep reading together,” said Bergerson.
Families enjoyed reading and celebrating together
Reading chapters of the book at home with families made a powerful impression on the students and parents as well.
“I thought it was really cool because it brought my family together,” said Josie Leikem, grade 4. “Now my mom wants to get another book for us to read all together at home.”
The Love of Reading Month ended with a family party and movie night at the school featuring the film version of Because of Winn-Dixie. Families came with sleeping bags and enjoyed egg salad sandwiches and litmus lozenges, which were important themes in the book.
“Silver Crest is unique because of the location and the one-of-a-kind teachers who love to do hands-on educational instruction,” said SFSD Superintendent Andy Bellando. “They also embrace and teach a high level of respect for biological sciences because of the natural environment that surrounds them.”