Students read above and beyond the classroom |

Students read above and beyond the classroom

Scarselli Elementary School students participated in a reading program and earned free admission tickest to Six Flags Discovery Kingdom.

More than 30 Scarcelli Elementary School students are heading to Six Flags Discovery Kingdom for going above and beyond with recreational reading.

Students participated in Six Flags' "Read to Succeed," a program that encourages students in kindergarten through sixth grade to engage in recreational reading. Students who completed six hours or more of non-school-related reading within eight weeks earned a free admission ticket to a participating Six Flags Theme Park.

"Author Jim Trelease said 'The more you read, the better you get at it; the better you get at it, the more you like it; and the more you like it, the more you do it,'" Scarselli librarian Mary Swisher said. "The more students read the better readers they become, and studies show that students who spend more time reading score higher on standardized tests."

Swisher said Scarselli's reading specialist Hollie Harvey discovered and coordinated the program last year and suggested students participate in it again. Swisher took the reins this year.

"I logged the students' names and reading hours with Six Flags and reminded the students when logs were due," she said. "I encouraged them to read outside of school and helped them choose books that interested them."

Swisher said students were allowed to read anything — including chapter books, magazines, newspapers, e-Books and comic books — as long as the reading material was not assigned in a classroom and the amount of time they read was logged and signed by a teacher or parent.

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"I feel like we had a great participation this year and hopefully the program will continue and we can have even more students participating," said Swisher. "The most important thing is we want kids to love reading and to become lifelong readers."

Read to Succeed is "A series of programs throughout the Six Flags family of parks that makes a difference in the communities by encouraging local involvement, supporting the mission of various nonprofit organizations and bringing the thrill of Six Flags to children and families across North America," according to the Six Flags' website.