The Troy Foundation for Education Excellence has awarded Mrs. Chatel a grant of $500 to use toward her Smith Book Bag Project!
The purpose of this project is for the media specialist to support classroom teachers at Smith Middle School by encouraging students to check out bags of fiction and nonfiction books over long school breaks and over summer vacation. It has been well-established that summer reading loss is prevalent in the U.S. education system. However, studies have shown that when students have consistent access to books over breaks that are high-interest and appropriate reading level, it led to statistically significant better test scores for students, on top of students reporting that they read more over the summer and enjoyed reading when given easy access to books.
Normally, students have three weeks to check out books from the Smith media center, with a maximum of 4 at a time. With this project, students are getting 5 or more books, and they are able to keep the bag of books at home until the end of break or summer vacation!
As a follow-up, students will be completing an activity to show what they learned or what they liked about the variety of fiction and nonfiction books that they read.
Mrs. Braun's students were the first to pilot this program over Spring Break. More students will be chosen to take home a bag of books over summer vacation.
Many thanks to the Troy Foundation for Educational Excellence for giving Smith students this opportunity to keep reading when they're not in school!
Mrs. Christina Chatel, MLIS
A teacher librarian at Boulan Park and Smith Middle Schools in Troy, Michigan.