More than 60 students attending summer programs at the Ricardo Richards and Alfredo Andrews elementary schools recently participated in a book swap aimed at motivating them to read during the summer months.
The event was held on July 26 at the Ricardo Richards Elementary School campus and was arranged by Assistant Principal Juliette Heddad-Miller in conjunction with Denise Gomes, program assistant in the Department of Education's State Office of Curriculum and Instruction.
Gomes shared the importance of the activity, now in its third year.
"Keeping our students engaged in literacy helps to combat the 'summer slide', which is a tendency for our students to actually lose achievement gains made the year before," she said. "Encouraging our students to read is a win-win situation for the entire community.”
The book swap helps reinforce students' participation in the 10th Annual Governor's Summer Reading (GSRC). Students brought books they had previously read in exchange for new, grade-level reading material. The excitement was evident as they perused the large selection of books made available through a donation from Mishawaka, Indiana-based Better World Books.
"There are very few things more satisfying than seeing how excited these students are about reading," Gomes said. "A love for reading will open imaginable doors for these children and result in long-term personal, academic and professional success."
Some students began reading their books soon after receiving them. They were reminded to record each book on a tracking sheet in order to receive credit toward the five-book goal of the Reading Challenge.
The annual Governor's Summer Reading Challenge encourages students in grades K-6 to read five or more books during the summer months. Students use tracking sheets to record the books they read. Students who successfully complete the Challenge are invited to a celebration with food, games and giveaways.
For more information about the Governor's Summer Reading Challenge, which runs through September 21, visit www.readfive.org.