Reading for pleasure - and the future

Sutro Elementary School celebrated Reading Week at the end of April as a way to foster literacy both at school and at home.

Midweek, more than 200 parents and children, attended Family Literacy Night, a fun-filled, hourlong event that featured five activity stations, said event organizer and first-grade teacher- Nancy Scott.

"This is our annual event, and this year, we not only had stations with reading games, but took pictures of families who are asked to bring their favorite book," she said. "We had about 55 families take advantage of the photos, families that ranged in size from two to 10."

The Family Reading Portraits, as they were billed, cost $3 each and included an 8-by-10-inch photo.

"We really try to make the night fun, not only for the children, but present it in a way that helps parents see how important they are in getting their kids to love reading," Scott said.

Stations included a wanted-poster game designed to show the comprehension of characters, bingo games and a display of favorite children's books.

In preparation for Literacy Night, three teachers, including Scott, attended a class in Reno.

"Reading Week Class is a great opportunity where teachers can go and get wonderful, fun ideas," Scott said.

And while planning something like this seems to be a big job, she insists with delegation and participation, it's easy.

"We all pull together, and it comes off beautifully," she said. "The children, parents, teachers have always been real positive.

"And we sure hope it inspires more reading at home."

All their hard work paid off.

"As a reward for the children participating and reading, (music teacher) Mr. Gradillas (kissed) a lamb on the lips on the playground," Scott said. "The other option was to get him to ride a camel, but we couldn't find one.

"As you can see, we'll try almost anything to make it fun and get (the children) interested. Especially in reading."

Anyone with information about a camel for the 2008 event is asked to call the school at 246-6270.

• Contact reporter Karel Ancona-Henry at or 246-4000.


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