On Tuesday, Carlisle Elementary School in Delaware hosted a book swap where students could trade in their books for new books to read and enjoy.
Principal Paula Vertikoff said the event, which was held from 3:30 to 5 p.m. on the school’s playground, had several purposes.
“We wanted to start welcoming people back into the school,” Vertikoff said. “We know over the summer kids get tired of books, so it’s a good time to swap them out, especially since we’re over halfway (through the summer). It’s nice because everyone can grab a Popsicle and book. They need to read every day.”
Vertikoff and School Counselor Marie Weller greeted families and handed out Popsicles and books to families who attended.
“We wanted to give people another opportunity to gather,” Weller said. “We had a lot of families who were online last year that we’re seeing again in person.”
Weller added it’s important to keep students reading over the summer, and she hoped the book swap was an encouragement to students.
“(We want to) encourage a love for reading,” she said. “There’s something novel and special in discovering something that you didn’t know existed before. This experience is almost like a treasure hunt of sorts. You find something you didn’t know existed or you find more in (a series you like.) It’s not just encouraging a love for reading but encouraging reading because we know that’s the basis for everything academic.”
Vertikoff said she’d like to do more events this year to build connections between the school and the community.
“(We’re) excited to welcome everyone back in and start rebuilding our family,” Vertikoff said. “(We’re) thinking of other events to have, mainly outside that will be safe for families. Parents have been our partners for the past year, and we want to keep that going and make sure that we build strong relationships with families.”
Weller said seeing children at the event without masks was “a glimpse of normalcy,” and she’s excited for the first day of school in August.
“I’m really looking forward to having everybody back together again,” Weller said. “I love my job. Kids challenge and inspire me every day.”
Glenn Battishill can be reached at 740-413-0903 or on Twitter @BattishillDG.