(MARCH, 2022) —Valley Stream 13’s Wheeler Avenue Elementary School launched its One Book, One School Initiative in partnership with the PTA’s Pick A Reading Partner (PARP) to encourage students’ love for reading. PARP is a PTA-sponsored literacy initiative that involves students reading for 20 minutes a night with their families for three weeks during the month of March (Monday, March 7 to Friday, March 25). This year’s PARP theme is “Wild About Reading.” Wheeler Avenue’s mascot, Chirpy, went around to the classrooms with one of the reading teachers to explain PARP to the students. At the conclusion of the program on March 25, students with the most minutes of reading logged will earn Scholastic Bucks for the school’s next book fair!
To jump-start the One Book, One School initiative, students read Dog Days by Karen English in their classrooms. The book features a student named Gavin and how he overcomes the obstacles and challenges of being a new student. Gavin finally makes a new friend but gets in trouble while the two are on a playdate. As a punishment, Gavin must take care of his great aunt Myrtle’s horrible little dog, which he has never liked. The story unfolds with Gavin, and the readers, learning the importance of respecting elders, taking responsibility for one’s actions, and successfully dealing with bullies. Students also listened to the song Who Let The Dogs Out through their school intercom and decorated their school building’s vestibule with pictures of dogs as part of the One Book, One School initiative.
After each book selected to be read during the One Book, One School initiative is finished, students participated in discussions on educational platforms such as Kahoot and Flipgrid with their fellow classmates to help facilitate meaningful conversations. Wheeler Avenue Elementary School ended its One Book, One School celebration by partnering up with Ruff House Rescue and the Student Council to support the rescue center. Students also went on a virtual field trip to Ruff House to meet with the staff, volunteers, and the dogs.