Building a love of reading

Community leaders read to La Cañada Elementary students during school's Community Read-In.

March 02, 2011|By Andrew Shortall,
  • La Canada Unified School District Superintendent Jim Stratton reads a Curious George book to 2nd graders at La Canada Elementary School in La Canada Flintridge on Tuesday, March 1, 2011. (Raul Roa/Staff Phographer)
La Canada Unified School District Superintendent Jim… (Raul )

La Cañada civic leaders volunteered to take time out of their schedules to read to La Cañada Elementary School students Tuesday, as part of the school’s annual Community Read-In.

There was a wide range of readers on hand, from parents and JPL employees to City Council members and La Cañada Unified School District officials, including Supt. Jim Stratton.

The Community Read-In is one of his favorite days of the school year, Stratton said.

“If you were facing disastrous budgets, where would you rather spend your time?” Stratton said with a laugh.

Twenty-five readers participated in the event throughout the school day, each reading a children’s book to one of the classes. Jennifer Suh, the Community Read-In activity coordinator, said the event was a success.

“I think it was enjoyed by the students, teachers and readers alike,” Suh said. “With this event, I am always impressed by the enthusiasm and support that our community shows for our kids.”


While reading, Stratton paused before turning a page to ask the kids what they thought might happen next or for the definition of a particular word.

“I think this an opportunity for them to reflect critically as you ask them questions — it’s a nice little community event,” Stratton said.

The class quizzed their superintendent as well, asking him to reveal his favorite sports teams. In the end, the students are taught a lesson, whether it’s subconscious or not, when their superintendent or mayor reads them a story, Stratton said.

“They see that adults like to read, they have favorite books and it’s something that’s still important in their lives,” he said. “I think it builds that life-long love of reading.”

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