Mrs. Tara Naylor, a Myers Elementary teacher, says it’s great seeing former students grow into such wonderful readers and learners when she see’s them coming back from the high school to read with her students.
In 2017, ninth grade English teacher Mr. Kerry Naylor and his wife Mrs. Naylor, who teaches second grade, came up with the idea to have her students and ninth graders from BAHS get together several times each semester for a combined reading project. This is the third year they have completed the project.
Mr. Naylor and the second grade team are the ones who put the idea into action. The two grades use their iPads and an app called Epic to access their books. Epic is close to an online library with many popular children’s books.
When Mr. Naylor and the second grade teachers put the idea into motion, they weren’t sure how it would turn out. At first, Mrs. Naylor suggested it as a PLC (Professional Learning Community) project. Although it didn’t become one, Mrs. Naylor and Mrs. Robin Miller enjoyed the experience so much they decided to continue. Mrs. Dionis and Mrs. Coleman also enjoyed the experiment, although they limited their participation after the first year.
The goal for this project is different each time the two grades get together. Mr. Naylor said, “My ninth graders grow from it because it allows all of them to see themselves as educational leaders and role models, while Mrs. R. Miller said, “We set the learning experience to match what we are focusing on in writing and shared writing.”
Mrs. Naylor said the experience motivates students to read.
“The kids always look forward to seeing the ninth graders.” Mrs. Naylor said.
Mrs. Naylor’s and Mrs. R Miller’s favorite thing about this experience is watching the kids bond with their high school partners and their reactions to the lessons and the readings.
“I really enjoy planning these lessons with Mr. Naylor (my husband). I also love watching the kids reactions from both grade levels,” said Mrs. Naylor.
Ninth graders take a lot away from the project, too, Mr. Naylor said.
“When you listen to their conversations after a day spent with their reading partners, you can hear how seriously they take their job and how much they enjoy working with young learners,” said Mr. Naylor.
The classes are planning to meet once.