Schools find more than one way to develop readers


Parker Elementary School students milked a cow cut-out at a county fair-type celebration.

School administrators at Twin Lakes Elementary School donned capes and spoke in comic book terms.

Meadowvale Elementary School students played bingo and competed in a book bowl.

And Lincoln Elementary School kids got up early and came to school with their parents.

What do these seemingly unrelated events all have in common? They were all part of “I Love to Read” festivities across Elk River elementary schools in recent weeks.

Lincoln teachers served breakfast in the lunchroom to attract an overflowing crowd of readers and guests.

Twin Lakes Elementary School administrators pointed out how even Super Heroes love to read. They also brought in local author and businessman J. Brian Calva, who by day works in sales and marketing for Beaudry Oil Companies. He donned a Super Man costume to the delight of the children. Calva, or Super Beau as he was known on this day, read a book he authored with his wife, Renae, to bright-eyed and eager first-graders. The book, “The Princess of Igotchu,” offers a take on the Calva family’s own personal experience of adopting their baby girl, Olivia. It was a hit with the kids.

Calva’s message to the kids was becoming a good reader is very important and that anyone can write their own book if they try.

Twin Lakes’ theme was read was “Be a superhero … Read!”

Students learned the more they read, the more superpowers they will have.

If students achieved their reading goal each week, they would receive a piece of Bazooka bubble gum with a “Bazooka Joe” comic on their weekly media center visit.

Principal Dan Collins made appearances throughout the month as Capt. Green, a superhero who is green friendly and promotes the ideas of recycle, reuse and reduce.

Throughout the month, media specialist Kathy Lewin traveled between classes with a cart of iPads. Students K-5 created a variety of comics. K-2 students created a comic of themselves, with thought bubbles proclaiming: “I am a superhero reader!”

Older students created a comic related to the curriculum; Martin Luther King Jr., Abraham Lincoln, Mount Rushmore or Tall Tales. The comic included six boxes with pictures students captured with six speech bubble facts.

Local cartoonist and author Duane Barnhart also visited.

Parker Elementary School students, meanwhile, celebrated at month’s end with a County Fair, complete with games and activities to highlight the school’s reading of “Charlotte’s Web” and other activities throughout the month.

Meadowvale Elementary School offered its first Meadowvale Book Bowl. There were seven teams competing and the winning team  was: “The Book Devourers.” They represented Meadowvale at the district Book Bowl on March 14.