St. Joan was a local early adopter of a national program designed to promote reading aloud at home. For the past four years, St. Joan has participated in Read To Them’s
, “One Book, One School” program through the wonderful support of the SJA PTO and parish community. Each year, a committee choses a book which then gets distributed to each family.
The program begins with a much anticipated assembly for the elementary grades where the book is eagerly announced, while middle school students and parent volunteers magically transform the hallways of the school into the setting of the book. Each day there are trivia questions to engage the students and special visitors are invited to bring the story to life. Students have seen the hallways transformed into the streets of Manhattan for The Cricket of Times Square, enjoyed watching a master sculptor transform a block of ice into a penguin, for Mr. Popper’s Penguins, while eating Swedish fish, and have dressed as pirates searching for treasures like in the book Welcome to Wonderland. Most recently, The Vanishing Coin, was the chosen selection and students were treated to an amazing magic show from Dr. U.R. Awesome of Big Fun and a thrilling Mad Science assembly.
When a whole school reads the same book, there’s a lot to talk about. One School, One Book
is a program in place at schools throughout the country with the fundamental purpose being to “build a community of readers” through a shared reading experience-like a very large book club!