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Roanoke Rapids Graded School District celebrated Read Across America Week with our elementary and pre-kindergarten students over the past week. 

Because reading is so important for lifelong learning and participating fully in society, the National Education Association designated a week that schools, libraries, and communities across the United States can organize events dedicated to encouraging reading and educating people about its benefits. 

Read Across America Week also honors the birthday of the beloved children's author, Dr. Seuss, whose timeless stories continue to captivate readers of all ages.
During Read Across America Week, educators, parents, and community members come together to promote literacy and encourage a lifelong love of reading in children. 

The week is filled with fun and engaging activities that inspire imagination, creativity, and a sense of wonder through the magic of books.

Our Belmont Elementary School, Manning Elementary School, and Clara Hearne Pre-Kindergarten Center classrooms and hallways were adorned with colorful decorations inspired by Dr. Seuss's whimsical characters and themes, which created an inviting atmosphere that sparked curiosity and enthusiasm for learning. 

Students participated in themed Dr. Seuss dress-up days, such as where they came to school dressed in their favorite hat (like The Cat in the Hat) or silly socks (like Fox in Socks), which added an element of playfulness and creativity to the week's festivities.

Throughout the week, our teachers incorporated literacy-focused activities into their lesson plans, including writing exercises, vocabulary games, and storytelling sessions. 

These activities not only strengthened students' reading skills but also nurtured their imagination and critical thinking abilities. 

The activities even extended into our math classes where students read Dr. Seuss's Bartholomew and the Oobleck, practiced fractions by measuring 1/3 of a cup of water and 1/2 of a cup of cornstarch, and while stirring learned that oobleck is a material that can behave like both a liquid or a solid, depending on how much pressure is applied.

Another hallmark of Read Across America Week is that schools organize special events such as read-aloud sessions, where guest readers share their favorite stories with students. 

Many of our district leadership team including Lauren Hinnant (Executive Director of Instructional Services), Felicia Few (Executive Director of CTE, Accountability, and Testing), Tracy Kidd (Director of Human Resources), Krissy Martin (Coordinator of MTSS and COVID-19 Interventionists), Tess Yeatts (Director of Exceptional Children), Mandy Clark (Public and Student Information Officer), and I had a wonderful time reading some of our favorite books to the students at our three schools.

Read Across America Week serves as a reminder of the profound impact that reading has on our lives, shaping our understanding of the world, expanding our horizons, and fostering empathy and understanding. 

By coming together to celebrate the joy of reading, we inspire future generations to discover the transformative power of books and unlock a world of endless possibilities.

Another special part of this week was that our Chaloner Middle School bands visited our younger students. 

The sixth grade band went to Clara Hearne Pre-Kindergarten Center and performed for our

pre-kindergarten students on Tuesday. 

The seventh grade band went to Manning Elementary School and Belmont Elementary School on Friday and performed for the elementary school students. 

It is so wonderful to see our middle school band program flourishing and inspiring our youngest students to develop their love of music.

We hope that you will join us on March 14, 2024, at Belmont Elementary School for their Night of the Arts from 5:30 - 7:00 PM. You can visit the Book Fair, see our local artists at Belmont’s amazing artwork, and hear wonderful student musical performances.

Our high school scholars have been showcasing their talents in both SkillsUSA and DECA. On Friday, SkillsUSA traveled to Greenville to compete at the Eastern Regional Rally. 

We earned first place for Crime Scene Investigation (Morgan Beam, Landen Briggs, and Jillian Ott), Extemporaneous Speech (Marissa Swindells), Medical Terminology (Brenna Swindells), Medical Math (Melissa Nigah), and Firefighter Basics (Ayden Turner). We earned second place for Debate (Brianna Mabrey and Ryland Yeatts), Promotional Bulletin Board (Shandi Byrum, Maecy Garriss, and Madison Jones), and T-shirt Design (Emily Campbell-Tyler). 

We earned third place for First Aid/CPR (Madison Dodway), Debate (Alyssa Keeter and Alexa Swindells), Customer Service (Kiasia Rawls), and Pin Design (Kayla Whitfield). 

We earned fourth place in Customer Service (Symiah Banks) and fifth place in Medical Terminology (Amber Milan). 

Our scholars will participate in the state competition in Greensboro next month. 

Also, this week our DECA Club went to Greensboro for their state competition. Our scholars did so well, and one of them, Emma Wells, will be traveling to California for the national competition. We are so proud of our students!

Lastly, as spring approaches, we have some important dates to put on the calendar including our EC Advocacy Week, which will happen March 18 - 22.