Quantcast

Greene County Teachers Bring Books and Treats to Student Neighborhoods

Posted: Updated:
Students took free books and popsicles away from the event. Students took free books and popsicles away from the event.
Students read with teachers in their own neighborhoods. Students read with teachers in their own neighborhoods.
Students were able to choose from a variety of books. Students were able to choose from a variety of books.
RUCKERSVILLE, Va. (WVIR) -

Schools in the area may be out on summer break, but students from Ruckersville Elementary in Greene County are still getting some one-on-one time with their teachers.

The Words on Wheels program visited Greene County neighborhoods on Wednesday, spreading literacy throughout the county. The program is run by teachers who volunteer their time to travel on a bus and read books to students while providing literacy resources to parents in neighborhoods where English is largely a secondary language.

“This is a big community where a lot of parents only speak Spanish, so I translate for them,” said Words on Wheels volunteer Paula Mercado. “Just us coming here too and me being here makes it a lot easier for them.”

This is the first year the program has been done in Greene County. Teachers say they hope the program leads to more summer reading for students.
“So in the summertime, a lot of time there’s a lag and kids aren’t reading as much as they do during the school year, so it’s partly that to keep them reading during the summer and also just flat out a love of reading,” said RES teacher Jan Elmuth.

Teachers also say the program is a way to get to know the students outside of the classroom.

"We are not just teachers in that building at school, but that we care about them and we're going to visit them at their home too," Elmuth said. “We really saw a need for summer literacy and also to really get in touch with the younger kids to get them started on the right track for reading."

Parents like Crystal Morris think it is a great way to get to their kids back into the habit of reading every day.

"Sometimes we get out of that routine of going to school its nice just to have a refresher during the summer,” Morris said. “For [my daughter] to be able to read and not lose everything over the summer that she learned during the year."

After visiting their neighborhood, teachers let the students keep the books so they may continue to read through the summer. They are also given a popsicle before the bus leaves for its next stop. 

Wednesday was the third and final time this summer that the teachers set out on the Words on Wheels bus. Ruckersville Elementary School said it is hoping to expand the program next summer.