Lake Elementary students celebrate literacy

Staff reports
Lake Elementary second-grade teachers dressed in costumes during the “Krewe of Genres” are, from left, Molly Moore (The Little Engine that Could), Pam Gautreau (Junie B. Jones), Gabrielle Page (Franny K Stein), Hollie LeBlanc (Captain Underpants), Shannon Parent (The Very Hungry Caterpillar), and Adria Dunham (Miss Viola Swamp).

Pam Gautreau’s second- grade students at Lake Elementary hosted a “Krewe of Genres Mardi Gras” parade Friday, Feb. 20 to celebrate literacy.

The parade was only a part of an Ascension Fund Grant sponsored by Shell.

Gautreau was able to supply her students with a complete listening station with read along CDs, many books of various genres (fairy tales, fables, realistic fiction, nonfiction, and poetry), and puppets.

The project provided an innovative and hands on approach to identify the differences in literature types. The students practiced fluency and comprehension while reading grade appropriate texts.

The grant also furnished doubloons decorated with genre types and heart beads to throw to lower grade spectators in order to encourage a love of reading. The grant was intended to enhance the first grade curriculum of skills when Gautreau wrote it last year. 

First-grade students identify stories as nonfiction, fairy tales/folktales, poems, or fables. Since she was asked to “loop” to second-grade with her first-graders, she invited her fellow second-grade teachers to join in the celebration. All students designed float boxes to depict their favorite genre types and supplied candy and treats to throw on the big day.

Kindergarten teacher, Debbie Harrison, was so excited about the event and requested special permission from assistant principal Troy Blank for all kindergarten children to attend as well. Luckily, there were enough treats for the additional 140 plus children in attendance.

“All children had a fun and memorable experience,” said Gautreau. “Many students were heard yelling, ‘Read Me Something, Mister!’”

Gautreau’s project, which was originally designed to promote effective reading practice for her class of 20 students, winded up impacting over 300 children in all.

Gautreau would like to extend her gratitude to Shell for their support of this project. She would also like to thank representative Gary LaCombe for attending and sharing in the fun celebration.

“Mary Kruse and Ascension Fund are to be commended as well for all of the additional support that is given to all Ascension Parish teachers who have ideas that stimulate a love of learning,”?added Gautreau.

The project will continue for years to come as Gautreau hopes to continue the tradition next year at her new school Lakeside Primary.