Jeannette literacy event brings children inside the story
Each year, the doors of Jeannette McKee Elementary's library are opened for the fall literacy event and the endless creativity that lurks in the minds of children comes to life.
This adventure in haunted literacy is held near Halloween each year and transforms the library from an ordinary room filled with books to an enchanted forest where characters from those books act out their stories. This year's event brought nearly 300 people to the library — last year the total was 185.
Sam Dini, reading specialist, said the event gained popularity simply by word of mouth.
“It's steadily grown,” Dini said. “This year was the biggest jump.”
They hoped for 200 this year and were surprised by the number who signed up in advance. To better handle the large crowd, the organizers this year expanded on the original idea. Students and their families had a chance to make crafts and to participate in games, in addition to touring the library and hearing a live reading of “What was I scared of?” by Dr. Seuss.
There was a big jump in the number of teachers who volunteered their time to participate in the event as well. Teachers volunteered as tour guides, led the craft projects, organized the games, read to the children and helped to erect the enchanted forest. Teachers dressed in costume, which gave the children a chance to see their teachers in a different light, said Brittany Gasparro, Title 1 assistant.
After the event, all children were able to pick out a book to take home with them. There were 380 books for all age groups featuring fall themes of Halloween and fairy tales.
This literacy event is meant to act as a springboard to increase all of the students' interest in reading. Title 1 funding requires the district to hold several events with parents throughout the year as a way of encouraging parents to read with their children outside of school. Chandra Orbin, a Title 1 program teacher, said she'd like to see the other events held through the year get as much attention as the fall literacy event.
For example, there is a program for parents of kindergartners to teach parents how to help their children learn to read. The program meets four times a year, children receive a book to take home at each session and parents who attend each of the four programs receive a gift card. Orbin said just 20 percent of parents attend those events while 50 percent of the entire elementary student body attended the fall literacy event.
“We're trying to increase parents and kids reading together,” said Orbin.
Kristie Linden is an editor for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 724-838-5154.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Longtime Jeannette teacher continues to grow as educator
- Westmoreland County Land bank enables Jeannette to clean up blight
- Boy discovers stolen truck; Jeannette police warn residents to lock vehicles