Valley Road School's bulletin board motto turns into a movement

| 12 Feb 2019 | 09:40

    What started out as a Valley Road School (VRS) bulletin board theme that was brainstormed by the head of the VRS Media Center, Candice Smith, eventually took on a life of its own, as it became a schoolwide phenomenon.
    Smith brainstormed incorporating "Valentine’s Day into the February bulletin board, with the theme "Fall in Love with Reading." The idea quickly expanded to having all of the students of VRS, and then everyone who works in and for the school district, as part of the project. On an index card or paper heart, students, teachers, staff, administrators, Board of Education members, etc., write their favorite book title with the author and/or illustrator’s name as well as their own name, and grade, if applicable. The titles then populate the board for all to read.
    Teachers eagerly complied. Second grade teacher Meghan Jaust created a heart template with instructions for her students, and she willingly shared it with Mrs. Smith in the library and with the rest of the staff. School nurse Jessica Frank offered use of the bulletin board outside the Nurse’s Office for the inevitable overspill from the library board. Naming much-loved books, authors, and illustrators, has now become a schoolwide and districtwide project.
    Smith explained that the bulletin board concept felt ideally timed as “Read Across America Day” is on Friday, March 1 and “Love of Reading Month” occurs monthlong. March 2 is Dr. Seuss’ birthday, a highlight of the celebrations.
    “Reading is so vital to a successful education," Smith said. "I wanted to continue to keep our VRS students excited about reading. Seeing the book titles of their peers, teachers, and other adults in their world will continuously inspire our young readers."
    By getting the whole of the VRS population thinking about favorite books and, in turn, seeing their classmates, teachers, and other adults’ favorite books, it broadens the literary horizons of students, faculty, and staff. But it also does the same for all who visit the school.
    The school bulletin boards will be up throughout March.