Teacher calls 'MCS Reads' program a success - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Teacher calls 'MCS Reads' program a success

One year after it was put into practice, the MCS Reads program has proven to be a huge success.

In the program, a student is required to read two books per month that have not been assigned.

MCS student Macie LeeGrand can not imagine a world without books. Macie is a top reader at Westhaven Elementary. She reads roughly 40 books a month, and has a lot of encouragement when it comes to reading.

Macie's mom, Penny LeeGrand, is a second grade teacher at Westhaven, and says not all students get the gentle push they need from home to read.

"We've ran into children who don't know how to hold a book, who don't know their name, and these are things we don't want to continue in Memphis City Schools," she said.

LeeGrand has high praise for the MCS Reads program. Superintendent Carol Johnson brought the program to the school district during the 2004-05 school year. The idea is that each child at every grade level read at least two books per month that are not assigned.

"Superintendent Johnson has a great idea with this, at least two books a month," LeeGrand said. "She knew when she started it, two is going to push you to three, and after a while you'll have four. And sooner or later you'll have a lot of children telling you I read 40 or 50 books a month, because they are enjoying what they're reading."

By watching her daughter, LeeGrand has first hand knowledge that the program is working, and reading outside the school has helped LeeGrand's students improve inside the classroom.

"You can see a difference in their reading scores. A large difference," she said. "And, it's helped them with math, because math is going to a lot of word problems.">

There's also an incentive for reading so much: if the students read 15 extra books each month, they get to eat lunch with the principal.

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