READBowl State Champion
Agora 6th and 8th grade Reading Rooms Repeat as READBowl State Champion for the 3rd year
When Reading Specialist Tracy Harris brought the idea of participating in a program created by a former NFL player to her 6th and 8th grade reading rooms three years ago, little did she know that her groups would represent PA as the state Middle School Conference champion for all three years. “I thought that bringing in some fun competition might help motivate my students, and that’s what happened,” said Tracy. “They liked the idea of winning real awards, they enjoyed competing against other schools, and they have embraced the extra time spent reading.”
Developed by former NFL player Malcolm Mitchell, READBowl is a 4-week program in which schools from across the country track the reading minutes of their students each week. The competition is awarded based on the highest student average for reading minutes. Beginning on January 10th, minutes were tracked and accumulated each week for four weeks, with the winning schools announced during Super Bowl weekend. Students read during focus time, in small group sessions, and at different points throughout the school day. At the end of each week, students could earn the prize of watching a real NFL player give a motivational talk. 48 students across both grades participated in READBowl, and all came away from the competition better off for their time spent.
Not only did the competition help students get over the post-holiday hump, but progress was reflected in the classroom as well. On average, all of Tracy’s classes increased their benchmark testing scores, and activities like the READBowl can be extra drivers of success. “For a group that didn’t always have the most interest in reading, this competition helped get them excited in what is typically the most sluggish time of the school year. An added benefit to participating is an improvement in fluency as well.” For their efforts, Tracy’s class will be receiving a shipment of books to be used for the rest of the year.