By the time Will Rogers Elementary School students ended their 11th annual “Read to Achieve” read-a-thon on February 9, they had read a total of 500,000 minutes.The top ten readers in each grade, 60 students in all, were awarded Reading Achievement Medals. Among the other Prizes that were awarded were No Homework Passes, Magic Mountain tickets, Silver Certificates of Achievement, Gold Certificates of Achievement, and Gold Medallion Pins. Will Rogers’ principal Irma Lyons said, “Read-a-thon is always an incredible time here at Will Rogers. We saw students reading before school, during lunch, and even on the playground. It was an amazing sight and we know this enthusiasm for reading will continue. Read-a-thon is always an annual spark that lights a fire in many students.”As the largest Title I school in Santa Monica, Will Rogers began the read-a-thon as a means of improving students’ reading skills, as well as increasing their interest in reading. According to the school’s teachers, both reading ability and comprehension increase markedly during each read-a-thon. In addition, many students took advantage of the weekly Lending Library program that gives donated books to students in need and those who are interested.Just as the read-a-thon raised reading consciousness, it also raised approximately $10,000 that will support the media center and purchase supplies and other necessities. Sunset Park realtors Heidi Schuler and Suzanne Sanders donated 700 information folders that were distributed to parents and also funded some of the special activities and prizes.
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