Rebel Read Week inspires staff, students
By Matthew Stewart| (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Maryville High School worked last week to reignite the love of reading in its staff and students.
School officials organized Rebel Read Week, a schoolwide celebration complete with daily activities aimed at highlighting the joy of reading. They held two daily contests: Name that Book and Mystery Reader.
During each morning’s announcements, educators read the first line of well-known books. Students submitted their answer each day for a chance to win a $15 Wal-Mart gift card.
High-schoolers and faculty also worked to uncover a mystery reader’s identity by using a book cover and additional clues announced each morning. They submitted their guesses by Thursday for a chance to win Wal-Mart gift cards.
The student winner received $25 and the faculty winner received $20.
School officials also organized the Faculty and Friends Forage on Thursday. They provided homemade food, displayed new books and showcased their new Google Nexus 7 tablets.
Educators organized two Friday activities: Rebel Read-In and Fines Forgiveness Friday. Students and staff read at the end of Friday’s first block. Students who brought canned goods or nonperishable food items could also get their book fines forgiven.
Faculty, staff and students were generally pleased with the week’s activities, said librarian Marion Vose. “We received real positive feedback from everybody. We’re just trying to bring the fun back to reading. At this level, reading seems to be serious.”
Many students also supported Rebel Read Week’s mission.
“A lot of kids aren’t reading anymore with schoolwork and the Internet,” said junior Joe Anderson. “Rebel Read Week is a good way to get more kids involved in reading.
“I’ve always thought reading was important, but I don’t have a lot of time with my AP (Advanced Placement) classes. However, we did get to read (Alexandre Dumas’) “The Count of Monte Cristo” and (Mark Twain’s) “Adventures of Huckleberry Finn” last year. While I don’t get to read a lot of good books for fun, I really liked those two.”
Students also appreciated the opportunity to read at their own leisure.
“Rebel Read Week gives us free time that we don’t usually have in our classes,” said junior Christy Spitler. “I need it, because I’m behind on John Grisham’s books.”
Maryville High School is currently working to inspire more staff and students to read through its book clubs.
School officials recently started BookBites Bookclubs, which meet every Friday in the library, Vose said. Students get to eat in the library, and librarians provide dessert for them.
The high-schoolers have read Pittacus Lore’s “I Am Number Four” and Stephen Chbosky’s “The Perks of Being a Wallflower,” she said. The Staff Book Club is reading Vaddey Ratner’s “In the Shadow of the Banyan.”