Haverhill Promise Launches Citywide Reading Challenge; Prizes to be Awarded

(File photograph.)

Haverhill Promise, the Campaign for Grade Level Reading, has launched a citywide Reading Challenge for Haverhill Students to help encourage daily reading throughout the COVID-19 learning disruption.

Starting this week, students in pre-K-12 who attend any school or preschool program in Haverhill are asked to begin tracking their daily reading time and posting about their reading on social media. Since students of all ages are invited to participate, and interests may vary, the focus is less about the quantity of books being read, and more about the amount of time spent reading, according to a statement from Jenny Arndt, campaign director.

The U.S. Department of Education recommends that students read aloud for at least 20 minutes each day during long breaks from school to keep learning and sharpening their reading skills. Economically disadvantaged students are especially at risk for losing valuable progress in their reading achievement when school is not in session. The Haverhill Promise City-Wide Reading Challenge aims to encourage families across the city to make reading a priority in their homes while students are out of school for the next three weeks or more.

Parents and caregivers can help students track daily reading time and send in their students’ progress at the end of each week for a chance to win gift cards to Market Basket, Barnes and Noble and local restaurants. More information on how to enter can be found on the Haverhill Promise website at haverhillpromise.com/reading-challenge and by joining the City-Wide Reading Challenge event page on Facebook.

Reading Challenge tracking sheets in Spanish and English are available for download on the Haverhill Promise website at haverhillpromise.com/reading-challenge. Hard copies are available at the Haverhill Public School Drop-In sites at Consentino, Nettle, YMCA and Haverhill Boys and Girls Club by mid-week. At the end of each week, families may choose one of the following three ways to report their students’ progress and be entered to win a gift card: 1, Present a completed tracking sheet to a Haverhill Public Schools staff member at one of the HPS Drop-In Centers, 2, Email a completed tracking sheet to [email protected] or 3, Fill out a simple online survey at the Haverhill Promise website.

Participants may increase their chances of winning a prize by following Haverhill Promise on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter and posting photographs and videos of their students reading using #HaverhillReads2020, #HaverhillReads and #HaverhillPromise. The challenge continues for as long as the schools remain closed.

Haverhill Promise recognizes that many families may not have access to enough age-appropriate books for a variety of reasons. If a family is in need of books for their students during this time, they should email Haverhill Promise at [email protected] and a representative will work with the family to determine a quick solution.

WHAV is a Haverhill Promise partner organization.

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