Homer Alaska - Letters

Story last updated at 3:07 PM on Thursday, February 24, 2011

Bolstering a love for reading

Many kudos to the Homer Emblem Club No. 350, Sons of the Legion Post No. 16, The Homer Foundation, Kachemak Bay Lions and the Rotary Club for supporting literacy in our schools through the Battle of the Books program. We appreciate their donation of about 180 books to West Homer Elementary School, which allowed a record number of students in grades 3-6 to participate in the statewide program this year. These Homer organizations helped more than 50 students gain a true love for reading.

At West Homer, students read 15 books from different genres and met during lunch and after school to discuss the books and "battle" each other with questions. Last week we formed the final WHE teams, and students squared off with teams from our district via audio conference. Our teams made it to the second round to compete for the top four places. Our fifth/sixth grade team grabbed third place, while our third/fourth grade team placed fourth. This week the books became part of our school's library collection, where they continue to be read by other students.

Students shared their enthusiasm as they reflected on the battle process. "We like the Battle of the Books because we get to read lots of books, and we like being with our friends," stated Raychel Gerald and Daisy Kettle. "Sometimes you don't like the books at first, but then they get better. At first I didn't like Maze of Bones, but after awhile, there was exciting adventure and I was hooked," explained Brenna McCarron. "The battle is the best," commented Jesse Roach. "It's fun to compete without getting hot and sweaty."

The Homer Emblem Club, Sons of the Legion Post No. 16, The Homer Foundation, Kachemak Bay Lions, and the Rotary Club recognize that a child who can read well has the best chance for success in life. Thank you for being exceptional partners in education.

Lyn Maslow and Shirlie Gribble

West Homer Elementary