The annual Celebration of Reading event at the Charter School for Applied Technologies, Kenmore, NY gives new meaning to the old proverb, “it takes a whole village to raise a child.”
The event welcomes community members into the school to accomplish two main goals: (1) highlight the importance of literacy in education; (2) expose students to the broad spectrum of careers available to them.
“CSATs mission is to prepare students for the world of work, this is a perfect opportunity to inform students of the many careers in the community – and of course, the correlation between education and success,” said Justina Fetterly, public relations specialist for the school.
This year, as in years past, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Buffalo District was asked to take part in the event. Eight team members jumped at the chance to read to the students of CSAT, but along with books this year they brought something more with them…props!
Not props in the sense of accolades, but props like the kind an actor would use on stage. The team brought with them, tablet computers, pictures, a dive helmet and many other tools that they use every day.
“The kids found it interesting that after I read to them and talked to them about my career, I was able to show them what I am able to on a daily basis because my education allowed me to get a good job,” said Adam Hamm, USACE Buffalo District project manager. “The kids had a riot trying on the dive helmet, it was great.”
The sixth grade students thought it was the coolest thing that Deputy District Commander MAJ Michael Busby was reading to the kids off of his Nook tablet.
“I wanted to express to the kids it does not matter where you get the material to read from, whether it be a in the traditional sense with a book, magazine or newspaper, or through a technology source like a tablet or computer as long as you are reading that is a good thing,” said MAJ Busby.
The Celebration of Reading event fell right in line with the Corps of Engineers support of science, technology, engineering and mathematics outreach.
“Reading is at the foundation of every degree field. It is so important that we inspire students at a young age to not only be able to read, but to love and be passionate about reading,” said MAJ Busby.