Ripley’s Reading Event is a Top Hat | News, Sports, Jobs
RIPLEY — Students at Ripley Central School celebrated Reading Day across America in a variety of ways this year.
As National Reading Day across America takes place on March 2, Dr. Seuss’ birthday, students have organized activities throughout the week.
Principal Micah Oldham provided some history on National Reading Day across America.
“Beginning in 1997, the NEA lobbied for a special day to celebrate reading across the United States,” he said. “The idea proved popular, so it wasn’t long before the first Reading Day across America was held on March 2, 1998.”
Oldham said the event is designed to encourage reading among children, but also provides an excuse to have fun while celebrating reading.
“Students dressed up as their favorite characters from the books on Wednesday,” he said. “The cafeteria even served a Dr. Seuss themed breakfast and lunch (green eggs and ham/birthday cake).”
Oldham said reading is a priority at Ripley and the development of students’ identities, as readers receive daily attention.
“Reading is at the heart of what we do at Ripley Elementary and developing students’ identities as readers is something we strive for every day,” he said. “Read Across America gives us the opportunity to celebrate that identity and that work.”
Activities at Ripley Central School included a Different Spirit Day Monday through Friday. Monday was “Read My Shirt” Day and everyone was asked to wear a shirt with writing. tuesday was “If I Run a Zoo” Day, and students were asked to wear animal print/camouflage clothing. On Wednesday, everyone introduced themselves as characters for “Dress like a book character” Day. Thusday, “Cuddle up with a good book” The day allowed students and teachers to relax in pajamas. Friday was designated as “Crazy Sock Day” and is also Ripley Elementary’s usual Blue Shirt Friday.
Oldham said many people contributed to the plans for the week.
“Mrs. Kondrick suggested spiritual days,” he said. “Rhonda Thompson contacted the public library and the YWCA donated Dr. Seuss-themed crayons and stickers.”
The students also had guest readers from Chautauqua Lake Central School, an activity hosted by Michelle Rowe, Oldham said.
“CLCS guest readers toured RCS classrooms on the morning of March 2. Students shared their favorite Caldecott Winning books and their favorite childhood books” he said. “Ripley students love seeing their older siblings/former students visit to read.”
Students took walking trips to the Ripley Public Library on Tuesday and Friday, Oldham said.
“Students always enjoy getting out and exploring their community. Ripley Public Library has done a very good job of renovating the physical building and these trips showcase this impressive resource,” he said. “I know we have more students taking advantage of the library outside of school hours since walking started.”
Rhonda Thompson, director of Ripley’s library, read a book by Dr. Suess to each guest class. Next, students will play a game, such as Pin the Tie on the Cat.
The students were very engaged in library activities, Thompson said.
“I was very happy with it” she says. “A big part of it is getting out of class. They realize that learning can take place outside the classroom. There are other learning environments.
Thompson said she hopes activities like this will help familiarize students with the library and inspire them to visit the library outside of school.
“We want them to learn to love the library,” said Thompson. “We hope they go home and say, ‘Hey, can you take me to the library?