By Stephanie Avidon, Nassau Region Literacy Chair
Congratulations to the 2021 Nassau Region PTA Pick A Reading Partner (PARP) Winner: Birch Lane PTA in Massapequa Park. Their 3-week program was entitled “Reading Gives You Superpowers.” The committee sent a survey to via the REMIND app asking families to select their favorite theme among three choices. Since they needed to do everything outside of school, they set-up a PTA PARP email and YouTube account. They had a challenge each day including read a book about your favorite superhero or bundle up and read outside. Parents were encouraged to upload pictures of their children participating onto their Padlet site. They also created an informational video to explain the program and recruited 26 community hero readers who created videos that were posted on their Facebook page and YouTube channel. Google forms was used to capture data which helped prove it was a successful program.
We also awarded an Honorable Mention this year to: Oceanside School #5 PTA for their 2-week PARP program entitled “Camp Read S’more.” They decorated their hallways with 6-foot tall paper trees, camping signs, a tent and even a campfire. Some of their activities included a book scavenger hunt (completed at home), virtual book fair, family campfire chats, a book drive for Book Fairies. The principal hosted a “Campfire Virtual Read Aloud” on Zoom live from the tent at Camp Read S’more. They also hosted a Spirit Week which coincided with a different book each day and encouraged everyone to dress in their camp gear or school apparel. To make things easy for the teachers, they created PARP-themed slides which could be incorporated into their Google Classrooms. Lastly, to culminate PARP they all read “Only One You” and had every student decorate a river rock which was put into a rock garden celebrating their community.
Both programs ran on small budgets but made a huge impact on students, families and community members and most importantly encouraged the love of reading! Congratulations to both Birch Lane and Oceanside #5 PTAs. Thank you to the other units that submitted an entry too. Every program was fun, interesting, and promoted the goal of reading together!
Is your school planning a PARP program this year? If so, check the PARP section of the Nassau Region website (www.nassaupta.org/literacy) which offers helpful hints and ideas. If you don’t currently run a PARP program, check out the PARP Toolkit to see how you can easily start and create a program that encourages the love of reading to students and families at your school.
Maybe your school will be the featured winner next year! The PARP Award entry will be posted online in October at https://nyspta.org/home/pta-leaders/awards-and-recognitions/pick-reading-partner-program-award/. Deadline to enter is May 15, 2022.
If you have any questions about PARP or how to plan your PARP program, please contact Stephanie Avidon, Nassau Region PTA Literacy Chair, at firstname.lastname@example.org.