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Walter White School stirs up interest in reading
Students read 60,808 minutes
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Erick Yepez, a first-grader at Walter White Elementary School, smiled broadly as he dug out a book from the school library shelf on Friday. - photo by JEFF BENZIGER/Courier photo

Students at Walter White Elementary School have been energized to read since being challenged to read 50,000 minutes by last Friday in the "What Would You Do For Reading?" Contest.

"Our students have been reading as many minutes per day as they can in order to reach our set goal," said Stacy Flores, Walter White' library/media clerk.

The students surpassed that goal by reading 60,808 minutes, which means they will be treated to an award ceremony in addition to their STAR Assembly held on Friday, Nov. 22. During the assembly, Principal Daniel Pangrazio and several teachers will be wrapped up like mummies and dance for the students.

"It's going to be a lot of fun because not only are we going to pull prizes out but our principal and several staff members of each grade level are going to be wrapped up like dummies with tissue paper and toilet paper. Then they're going to dance to ‘Walk Like an Egyptian' on the stage in front of the students."

This contest also was a jump-start for the annual fall Scholastic Book Fair -- which happens to carry an Egyptian theme - which started on Monday. It is the first book fair at Walter White in seven years.

"Our students often face adversity and we thought it would be a positive reinforcement of all of the effort they have been giving daily if we rewarded them with a contest that connects our usually firm staff with their inner silly child," said Flores.

Students were encouraged to read at home but also were able to read in class. Flores said that she had some students who were in the school library each day exchanging books.