Dunkirk Elementary School 5 recently celebrated Read Across America and Dr. Seuss' birthday by hosting its second annual Community Reader Day. The NEA's Read Across America is an annual reading motivation and awareness program that calls for every child in every community to celebrate reading on March 2, the birthday of beloved children's author, Dr. Seuss. Motivating children to read is an important factor in student achievement and creating lifelong successful readers. Dunkirk Elementary School 5 wanted to show the students that adults are excited about reading as well.
Approximately 40 guests arrived at School 5, some with their own favorite books, to read to the students on a Friday afternoon. The classrooms were divided into smaller groups, with most classes having four readers in their rooms. The guests introduced themselves to the students, telling them a little bit about themselves. They read a story to the group and the children were invited to ask questions. The community readers come from all walks of life, from parents of the students and staff to SUNY Fredonia's President, Dr. Virginia Horvath; and Mayor Anthony Dolce, mayor of Dunkirk; to retired teachers and other professionals in our area.
Following the visits to classrooms, the guest readers gathered in the school library for refreshments. Co-chairmen for this event were Cynthia Maslakowski and Connie Glasier.
Earlier in the day students in grades 1 through 5 were part of a national campaign called Read the Most Coast to Coast. The contest, sponsored by Renaissance Learning, encourages students to read books and take accelerated quizzes that day, while trying to set a new record for number of books read in one day. School 5 students took 374 quizzes that day. The national total, which is a new record, was 4,409,622 quizzes taken in one day. Students received bookmarks to mark the occasion.
One of School 5's favorite quotes from Dr. Seuss is: "The more you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you'll go."