Jumpstart’s premiere national campaign ‘Read for the Record’ is one day of the year when millions of individuals come together to celebrate literacy and support Jumpstart in its efforts to promote early childhood education.
On October 4th, people across the country were encouraged to read the children’s book Ladybug Girl and the Bug Squad, by David Soman and Jacky Davis, in support of Jumpstart’s mission to work towards the day that every child in America enters school prepared to succeed. Each year, the campaign has shone a national spotlight on America’s early education achievement gap and highlighted Jumpstart’s programs as a way to address this crisis. Since 2006, the campaign has engaged 7 million children, raised more than $7 million for early education programs, and provided more than 1,000,000 books to children in low-income neighborhoods.
Since West Feliciana Parish schools live by the motto, “Learning Today, Leading Tomorrow,” Read for the Record is an event they participate in regularly. On Thursday, October 4, Bains Lower decorated their hallways with larger-than-life images pulled straight from the pages of Ladybug Girl and the Bug Squad. There were giant ladybugs and bees everywhere! Sharon Smith, Bains Lowers’ Paraprofessional, hand painted a beautiful mural that hung in front of the school and welcomed students as they arrived.
Shanel Lemelle, a teacher at Bains Lower, organized the event for the fourth year in a row and gathered volunteer readers from across the parish to donate their time to this worthy cause.
Mrs. Milton’s class from Bains visited Bains Lower to read Ladybug Girl and the Bug Squad to the younger students. They dressed up and entertained the audience with animated presentations of the book, which their listeners thoroughly enjoyed. The students in Mrs. Milton’s class that read were Claire Alberstadt, Tyler Bullock, Call Bunting, Shaina Carter, Buster Couhig, Frankie Dorsey, Anne-Ian Fant, Aidan Holland, Hayden Jackson, Rebekah Leming, Mary Margaret Lindsey, Spencer Malone, Ellis Manieri, Andrew McClure, Toby Nichols, Kelsie Noble, Emma Olsen, Mathilde Fox-Smith and Lizzie Vidrine.
Other community leaders that were recruited to participate by reading to classes were Bains Lower Principal, Raquel Square; West Feliciana Parish Librarian, Allison McKiernan; community story time reader, Laura Lindsey; community parent, Ashley Bush; retired first grade teacher, Nora Miller; WFP School Board Supervisor of Federal Programs, Joyce Edwards; WFP School Board Special Education Supervisor, Carolyn Lee; and The St. Francisville Democrat Editor, Erin Foster.
In all, 27 students and adults read to about 400 children on October 4 at Bains Lower!
In 2011, 2.2 million people participated in Jumpstart’s Read for the Record and broke the world record by reading Llama Llama Red Pajama by Anna Dewdney to 2,184,155 children around the world. The results for 2012 will be available soon, and by all accounts, West Feliciana has done their share to Read for the Record!
After leaving the school, Laura Lindsey traveled to several preschools throughout the parish and read the book to them as well. Allison McKiernan also read the book to Early Head Start families during Family Literacy Night on October 3.
To find out more at Jumpstart and Read for the Record, please visit www.jstart.org.