Lincoln School Engages Families In Literacy

Lincoln Elementary School third grader, Trayce Eggleston, and his brother first grader, Trysten, try out the photo booth at the school's recent Literacy Night.

Dr. Seuss was certainly “on the loose” at Lincoln Elementary School during their recent Family Literacy Night in March. The school’s Family and Community Engagement (FACE) Committee created the night from their summer family engagement workshop with consultant Teneh Weller. At the workshop, each school planned a schoolwide activity that encouraged family engagement in their child’s academic learning.

“Events like the Literacy Night gets parents and families excited about reading and building knowledge at home,” said Lincoln FACE Committee members Betsy Homan, Britany Emley and Azjah Butler. “Besides improving academics, it also helps build trusting relationships with the school and allows families to get to know teachers and staff in a positive way.”

Lincoln School focused on reading strategies for its Literacy Night that were wrapped up in fun, Dr. Seuss-related activities. They held craft stations that included creating a Cat in the Hat mask. A game room with sight words and word recognition games such as “Swat that Rhyme” where families used flyswatters to better understanding rhyming words. There was a performance by the JHS musical, “Seussical,” for families and a photo booth. Lincoln School teacher, Mary Cook, also dressed up as Dr. Seuss and read stories with students and their families.

As a classroom component at each grade level, Lincoln students starred in videos that were shown to the families explaining from a student’s point of view how the reading strategies worked “in action.” Families were given information such as asking questions as you read together for both fiction and non-fiction text such as: What do you think the main character is doing? What new fact have you learned? Every grade level also completed an age-appropriate literacy activity.

The reading strategies the school focused on were:

¯ “Eagle Eye” — Look at the pictures for clues

¯ “Stretchy Snake” — Stretch the word out by slowly saying all the sounds in the word

¯ “Chunky Monkey” — Look for small chunks or word parts in a larger word

¯ “Flippy Dolphin” — Flip the sounds in the word

¯ “Lips the Fish” – Say the beginning sound

¯ “Tryin’ Lion” — Try to re-read the sentence and think what makes sense?

¯ “Skippy Frog” – Skip the tricky word. Read to the end. Go Back & try again

Each family received bookmarks with key messages from the night including the “animal” reading strategies and handouts to take home to help with teaching their child at home. A special thanks to the members of the Lincoln FACE Committee who planned and executed the night with the help of all of Lincoln staff: Betsy Homan, Britany Emley, Azjah Butler, Mary Cook, Heidi Maggio, Kerry Widen, Willow Fodor and Katie Russo.