Posts

United WE READ Continues Serving Students in Summer 2020.

Over 1,000 books were given to Greater Kingsport students and families through school feeding sites and at a local apartment complex.

United WE READ was set to offer our 4th annual Camp Read to Lead this summer (see 2019’s summary here)! With a generous grant from the Ballad Health Foundation, we were excited to continue offering this successful program to 1st and 2nd grade students. But then, the COVID-19 Pandemic swept the globe, life changed, and we knew we needed to pivot the experience.

Thanks to the help of our wonderful United WE READ summer teachers and the strategic guidance of our leadership team, we successfully transformed our operation to safely offer a 4-week book distribution and online read-aloud experience. Over 1,000 books were given to Greater Kingsport students and families through school feeding sites and at a local apartment complex. Our United WE READ teachers also took turns reading aloud to students via interactive Zoom calls and YouTube live videos.

Re-watch our 4-week YouTube series below! Thank you to our United WE READ teachers for making this summer successful!

What do you do with an idea? Follow along as Ms. Jamie reads the story What Do You Do With An Idea? written by Kobi Yamada, illustrated by Mae Besom.
Where do stories come from? What makes a story? Follow along as Ms. Ali reads “I Am A Story” written by Dan Yaccarino.
Have you ever made a mistake? How can you change a “mistake” into something wonderful? Follow along as Ms. Diane reads “The Book of Mistakes” by Corinna Luyken.
What do you do with a problem? Follow along as Ms. Ali reads the story “What Do You Do With A Problem? written by Kobi Yamada, illustrated by Mae Besom.

Congratulations to United WE READ’s 2019 Camp Read to Lead Students!

United WE READ’s Camp Read to Lead just completed a fantastic third summer of growth! This exciting camp experience was funded by a partnership between Ballad Health Foundation and United Way of Greater Kingsport and hosted by Boys & Girls Club of Greater Kingsport and Bloomingdale Baptist Church! Our 2019 theme of “Super Reader, Super Self!” focused on each child’s unique talents and strengths–including being great young readers!

Modeled around the successful statewide initiative, “Read to Be Ready,” United WE READ’s program seeks out over 60 students who were behind grade-level assessment in reading ability at the end of the spring semester. The program is structured for teachers to work in a close 5:1 ratio with students for two and a half hours per day over one month, and United WE READ uses the same pre and post-program assessment tools as the state initiative. Each rising 1st and 2nd grade student has an opportunity to gain a love for reading, confidence, improve literacy abilities, build a personal library of nearly 20 new books and other school supplies, and participate in weekly field-trips offering practical, real-world experiences.

In 2019, students showed, on average, a +11.2% gain in accuracy and comprehension over the four week program, and a +2.2% gain in areas such as motivation, value for reading, and self-concept as a reader (All assessments based on Read to Be Ready standardized questionnaire and passages). Additionally (and for the third year in a row),100% of regular attenders maintained or improved reading levels, achieving our goal to reduce the “summer slide” where students can fall behind during summer months.

3rd Annual Camp Read to Lead is Underway!


United WE READ’s Camp Read to Lead  is currently in operation for a 3rd summer of growth, is funded by a partnership between Ballad Health Foundation and United Way of Greater Kingsport, and is hosted by Boys & Girls Club of Greater Kingsport and Bloomingdale Baptist Church! Our 2019 theme is “Super Reader, Super Self!” focusing on each child’s unique talents and strengths–including being great young readers!

Modeled around the successful statewide initiative, “Read to Be Ready,”  United WE READ’s program seeks out students who were behind grade-level assessment in reading ability at the end of the spring semester. The program is structured for teachers to work in a close 5:1 ratio with students for two and a half hours per day over one month, and United WE READ uses the same pre and post-program assessment tools as the state initiative. Each rising 1st and 2nd grade student has an opportunity to gain a love for reading, confidence, improve literacy abilities, build a personal library of 10-20 new books and other school supplies, and participate in weekly field-trips offering practical, real-world experiences.

In 2018, students showed, on average, a +16.5% gain in accuracy and comprehension over the four week program, and a +5.5% gain in areas such as motivation, value for reading, and self-concept as a reader (All assessments based on Read to Be Ready standardized questionnaire and passages). Additionally, 100% of regular attenders maintained or improved reading levels, achieving our goal to reduce the “summer slide” where students can fall behind during summer months. While we wait for this year’s exciting results, our students had some ideas on how adults can continue to help them: “Read to us.” “Read with us.” and “Listen to us read.”

Summertime – Road Trip Ideas

It’s summertime and that means many families will be hitting the road for trips, family visits, vacations, or even just the daily shuttling to camps and activities. ( Raise your hand if you’re taking a car ride with kids at any point this summer🖐🏽🖐🏿🖐🏼).

Why not make that car time valuable for brain building, interacting with kids, and keeping minds busy to avoid the dreaded, “Are we there yet?!” questions! We thought this list over on Trunki (an organization that is dedicated to “putting the breaks on tiring travel”!) was a great starting point!

Our United WE READ teachers especially love the “Holiday Journal” idea–all it takes is some blank paper, a little pre-planning, and lots of imagination!
Let’s keep kids reading, writing, listening, and speaking all summer long and fight the summer slide one car ride at a time!

View the ideas from Trunki here! And let us know what you plan to do in the comments below!

Keep Your Brain Active This Winter!

Families,

Our friends over at ThinkStretch.com have some fantastic resources to keep students’ brains active during winter! With fun activities, reading logs, STEM & science experiments, and more for every grade level, it’s a sure way to keep the winter boredom blues at bay! Check out their free downloadable packets here!