McNeil Canyon Elementary celebrated Love of Reading month in February. Instead of celebrating once on Dr. Seuss’s birthday, students and staff celebrated the entire month. Instead of counting total minutes read, students spent their time sharing, talking, and writing about books they enjoy. Each week McNeil had a school-wide activity which involved cross grade activities centered on the school’s love of reading. Activities included a favorite book share where Kindergarten through third graders buddied up and read a favorite story, while fourth through sixth graders met in small groups and shared an excerpt from their favorite book, a memorable-book share where older students paired with younger students and shared a book that had special meaning for them; and a Readers Theater performance where every student read and performed a play in front of others.
Students also had an opportunity to document the books they read in February by filling out dragon scales that hung in the hallway on Lor, the giant quilted Love of Reading Dragon. After students read a book at home or at school, they wrote down the title, author and genre in a booklet and then filled out the scale at school. By the end of February, Lor was covered with brightly colored scales representing a book that was read and color-coded by its genre. Having a love of reading is something that will sustain these students for a lifetime. Watching younger students admire and enjoy their older buddies and seeing the wonder in their eyes as they imagined themselves as such fluent readers was something that the staff and students of McNeil Canyon will not soon forget.
Story contributed by McNeil Canyon staff