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District Five Teachers Take on New Initiative with Students in Summer Reading Camp

COLUMBIA – In efforts to continue growing young readers, 26 teachers in Lexington-Richland School District Five spent a week with rising third and fourth grade students in the summer reading camp program. Over the course of three, 30-minutes sessions, teachers sat down with a student for a one-on-one interview to learn more about the particular book they read.

“All of us as teachers have ELA standards that we have to meet, and this is a great, new way for us to engage our students to see where they are as readers,” said Irmo Elementary first grade teacher and facilitator of the summer program Nicole Bishop. “From this experience, we will be able to gauge whether or not our students see themselves as readers and be prepared on how to approach it next school year.”

During the session, students were able to read through their books and share their thoughts with the teacher they were paired with. The interest levels of the students were certainly peaked as conversations still continued after the 30 minutes had passed.

“This is truly a wonderful experience because there are not many summer programs for us as teachers where we get to work with students, especially one-on-one,” said Harbison West Elementary fifth grade teacher Brenna Lamprey. “The discussions we’re having and the learning that is taking place benefits me tremendously and I will be able to apply this to my classroom.”

In previous years, District Five has held summer institute sessions for its teachers to brainstorm and share ideas on how to better engage students in reading. This year, the opportunity to hold one-on-ones was too good to pass on.

“Our teachers are always working tirelessly on better ways to reach their students in the following school year,” said District Five’s director of elementary education Michael Guliano. “We believe that their hands-on experiences of sitting down and discussing what reading means to the student will be very beneficial to both. It is our job as leaders to ensure the importance of reading and how it grows our young minds here in District Five!”

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