Bringing in the community (WITH GALLERY)

Published 12:00 am Sunday, March 5, 2023

Second graders Kinlee Patterson and Griffin Lackey greet the guest readers from the community as part of Read Across America Week at Dawson-Bryant Elementary School on Tuesday. (The Ironton Tribune | Heath Harrison)

Guest readers help out at DBE reading event

DEERING — Each year, Dawson-Bryant Elementary School takes part in Read Across America Week, held nationally in conjunction with the birthday of children’s author Dr. Seuss.

The event, created by the National Education Association, is aimed at boosting reading in students and, on Tuesday, there was much evidence of that, with multiple events scheduled throughout out that day alone.

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“We had green eggs and ham in the cafeteria,” principal Angie LaFon said of the activities, which also included hall and classroom decorations and children dressing up as book characters.

And the centerpiece of the day came in the morning, when, as the school does each year, they hosted guest readers from the community.

These included government figures, such as Lawrence County Commissioner Deanna Holliday, making a return visit, and both of the county’s common pleas judges, Andrew Ballard and Christen Finley, and those from education, such as Dawson-Bryant superintendent Steve Easterling, local school board members and Tomi Blankenship of the Lawrence County ESC.

Others included yoga instructor and Yommaste food truck owner Viviane Khounlavong, Jim Kearns, the county’s local Santa Claus, Ironton fire chief Moose Mahlmeister, Ironton Municipal Judge Kevin Waldo and Ironton Tribune reporter Mark Shaffer.

Guests arrived in the school’s cafeteria, where they were treated to breakfast, then, a student representative from each class arrived to take a reader back to their room.

Guests were given a copy of one of Seuss’s works, such as The Lorax, The Cat in the Hat and others, to read to the students.

LaFon said there were 32 readers this year and that the school has been hosting the event for more than decade.