Despite the ongoing school closure, the annual Right to Read Week (May 4-8) continued at Carlisle Elementary School in Delaware this year.
Carlisle Library Media Specialist Carrie Abahazi said she wanted to keep the event, which promotes literacy and at-home reading, even though students are learning remotely.
“Last year, we had a lot of themed activities throughout the week during the school day,” Abahazi said. “One of the activities was a ‘guess the book character’ contest that was created by Mrs. Franklin and a group of fifth grade students.”
Abahazi said she altered the plans for the event this year to keep students engaged and prevent it from being a burden for families helping their children with at-home learning.
“We decided to keep things simple this year, because students and their families already have a lot going on with remote learning,” Abahazi said. “We asked students to read 20 minutes each day and to create a ‘Carlisle Pacer Reader Lives Here’ sign to hang on a door or window. We wanted to encourage excitement for reading and an easy way to stay connected.”
Abahazi said she had 185 students submit photos of themselves with their signs, signs and books, and occasionally, signs and pets.
“We had fantastic participation,” Abahazi said in an email Tuesday. “Students who participated were entered into a book raffle sponsored by our PTO. (Carlisle Principal) Paula Vertikoff drew two winners from each grade level who will receive a newly released book delivered to their home. “
Abahazi said she’s glad students seemed to enjoy the activities.
“I was surprised with the response and very happy with the participation,” she said. “I loved seeing all of the ‘reader signs’ throughout my neighborhood when out walking my dogs. It made me so happy seeing all of their smiling faces.”
According to the Ohio Literacy Association, the Right to Read Week has been running for 43 years.
Abahazi said she hopes to continue the event again next year, hopefully in person.
“We hope it will be filled with in-person, not virtual, activities,” Abahazi said. “This worked great for the circumstance this year, but we miss our Carlisle kids.”
Glenn Battishill can be reached at 740-413-0903 or on Twitter @BattishillDG.