LIMA — While it is appropriate that National Read Across America Day is held on March 2, Dr. Seuss’ birthday, Lima West Middle School Parent Coordinator Yvonne Jones found a way to make the day a little more age-appropriate for middle schoolers.
The district held a three-hour Read-A-Thon Winter Olympics at the school Thursday. The event was successful as nearly 20 students turned out for the event.
“We thought that maybe Dr. Seuss was a little too young for this age group,” Jones said. “So we made it an Olympic theme where the kids could read books and earn medals.”
The students had the choice between several short, mid-level stories to choose from over the course of the event. Readers could earn a bronze medal by reading one book, a silver medal for at least three books and a gold medal for five and more. The students were treated to free snacks and honored in a short ceremony following the event. The event was also a fundraiser in which the readers sought out sponsors for donations for each book they read. The funds will be donated to the West Builders Club for its school activities.
Seventh grader E’Jorden Crockett was making the most of his time. He had completed eight books with 45 minutes still remaining in the event.
“I like to read, but sometimes I don’t get enough time in working on my reading,” Crockett said. “I think events like this are important because it encourages kids to read. Everyone should work on their reading skills.”
Eighth grader Sierra Cash also achieved her gold medal as she was working on her sixth book.
“I read a lot of books,” Cash said. “Sometimes, my mom says I read too much. A lot of people don’t like to read or just don’t take the time to do it. I think events like this can help because it might get someone interested in reading.”
Jones said she was happy with the turnout for the event, which was in its first year.
“”I am very proud of these kids,” Jones said. “It has been quiet, and they all have been reading nonstop.”
Reach Lance Mihm at 567-242-0409 or on Twitter @LanceMihm.