Volunteers read at Fort Bragg elementary school
Children from Sharon Rickman's second grade class pet nina, a therapy do while owner Diane Wood, top right, looks on. The canine visit was part of McNair Elementary School's "Reading Across America: held March 18.

FORT BRAGG, N.C. - Dozens of retired teachers, local sororities, fraternities, Soldiers and a couple of canine helpers visited McNair Elementary School Friday to read to children from second through fourth grade. The event was part of "Read Across America," a national event based on Dr. Seuss's birthday, March 2.

"McNair's birthday is March 12, so we try to tie it all into one," said Danell Napolsky, a first grade teacher at McNair and one of the organizers of the event. "The kids love it. They get a huge kick seeing therapy dogs and Fungo the Swampdog mascot."

Children throughout the classrooms were excited to see the visitors.

Dr. Marion Olion, with the Delta Sigma Theta Alumni chapter and S.C. Stewart, Prevention and Inspection Branch of the Fort Bragg Fire and Emergency Services Directorate visited Jean Salter's third grade class.

Olion, a professor at the Fayetteville State University Department of Elementary Education, read "10 Friendly Frogs" by Sally Hobson.

The readers seemed to enjoy the day as much as the students.

"I think reading is fundamental," said. Salters. He explained to the class how his son, Stephen, 10, had a hard time getting interested in reading. "You have to find a book that brings out your imagination," said Stewart, who put on a little 'show and tell' while reading from "Firefighers A to Z" by Chris L. Demarest.

Children in Sharon Rickman's second grade class had a special visit from Diane Wood and Nina the therapy dog. Nina, a standard poodle, enjoyed all the attention and petting from the class.
The event was an opportunity for community leaders to join the school in teaching children, said Dr. Carolyn Carr, McNair Elementary School principal. "When local leaders share their favorite childhood stories, they also support our school goals of increasing reading comprehension and problem solving."

Our students leave this experience knowing that reading is truly a life long journey as they listen to stories from local fire firefighters, college professors and athletes, high school students, members of fraternities and sororities and military personnel," added Carr.

Page last updated Fri March 25th, 2011 at 13:34