The classroom metamophosis: A reader’s paradise
November 15th marked the start of the long awaited READ-A-THON week at Guiding Light Academy. Our school, much to the excitement of the children, was transformed into a haven for readers big and small – tents popped up to provide cozy nooks to escape to, where imaginations could unfurl and a love for reading was gently nurtured.
Dressed in Crayola costumes, the teachers put on a play to the delight and wonder of their audience. Our enthusiastic readers then began their journey through literary games and fun activities held across the grades to promote the love of literature. They were excited to learn about different genres, practice skills related to debating, performing dramas and read-aloud stories. The older students honed their literacy skills by reading to the younger ones, who were avid listeners. Students from all grades were able to tap into their imagination by participating in creative writing tasks, composing everything from short stories to poems.
The entire week was dedicated to reminding children about the importance of reading in their everyday lives and a myriad of creative and fun ways were used to keep them engaged.
Book Buffet Anyone?
Fiction and Non-Fiction books were placed about the room with genres as varied as – Satire, Drama, Action and Adventure, Mystery, Fantasy, Poetry Science, History, Math, Science fiction etc.
The students had 10 minutes at each station to browse through as many interesting books as possible. This encouraged them to explore new genres and create new reading interests. At the end of the buffet students were happily surprised to discover a multitude of labels that characterized what a they could expect in a work of literature.
An Author for a Day
Students of Grade 3 listened to Read Aloud stories by Rudyard Kipling. They used this as a source of inspiration to create their own fables including fictional tales with moral lessons. Some of these stories included titles like “How the Lion Grew His Mane”. This thoroughly enjoyable workshop encouraged our budding authors to create and illustrate stories all on their own and thereafter proudly share it with their classmates.
The Scavenger Hunt was an exhilarating part of the READ-A-THON week by using familiar texts excerpts and authors for students to locate. A map was created for the hunters with clues such as ‘Find a book that is an award winner’. The students set off on their search and excitedly submitted their finds, which included titles like: Charlie and The Chocolate Factory by Roald Dahl, Parvana’s Journey by Deborah Ellis and The Works of William Shakespeare. This activity inspired the students to explore new books and authors.
The primary goal of all our educators revolves around instilling the joy and love of reading in the children. The staff at GLA were able to provide students with the opportunity to do just this.
Kindergarten huffs and puffs through READ-A-THON
During READ-A-THON week we discussed the 3 ways to read a book:-
STUDY the pictures
READ the words
RETELL the story
Our focus during this week was discovering and exploring the world of fairytales and fables. We picked The 3 Little Pigs to discuss the characters, setting, the author and illustrator. Students learned the story and with costumes on and props in place reenacted the fairytale for all at GLA. Well Done Kindergartens!
Reading activities during the rest of the week included: a craft to learn the sequence of the story, where students created their own 3 Little Pigs House. They also had fun reading BIG Books, Flashlight books and playing in the cozy book tents. Students created chalk themed bookmarks and really enjoyed their time reading with their book buddies.
Inhouse Author Programme & Book Signing Event – Teresa Casciol
To round up our READ-A-THON week GLA students were treated to a visit from Teresa Cascioli, Canada’s award winning entrepreneur turned children’s author. Ms. Cascioli enthralled GLA students with excerpts from her series of books titled “M is for Money” which was built on her belief that learning about numerical literacy in childhood made for financially savvy adults. Ms. Cascioli, a former CEO discovered this untapped niche in the children’s book market while out shopping for her niece Teresa’s birthday. She was unable to find children’s books on money and finance that suited her needs so she set about developing her own series. The books are based on twins Tessa and Benji and the topics range from what is money to taking and paying back loans and even explores how to give back to charitable organisations. Our lucky students even got to buy their own autographed book to take home. What a high note to end on! All in all, another great READ-A-THON week at Guiding Light Academy.