Pleasant Valley
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Hopewell 6th Graders Celebrate Culture of Readers

Over the last year, 6th graders at Hopewell have been tackling real world problems through their Culture of Readers projects.

“Culture of Readers is not a onetime project – the purpose is to develop a mindset of young readers to love reading for a lifetime,” Mrs. Hornick said of the students’ work.

Students identify a problem in the community and use their own personal experiences, observations and research to figure out what really is the problem. Mrs. Hornick says this usually takes students around a month.  Then, the work on coming up with a solution.

Students presented their final projects in April at Culture of Readers Night. Thank you to Mrs. Hornick for sharing her pictures.

Here’s two examples of those projects.


Gretchen’s project promotes books with characters that have a different view on home – maybe they are homeless, maybe they are refugees or maybe they are foster children.  Gretchen identified a problem:  many students around this area don’t understand/aren’t aware that home isn’t always ideal and books that showcase other ideas aren’t always promoted.  So, on Thursday, May 4, she is holding an event to showcase these types of books.  To figure out what books to showcase, she worked with small groups of 3-6th graders who came up with a list. She’s hoping the event will motivate people to drive change.

“I want people not only to understand that home is not always this ideal, storybook place (ironic considering I’m using books to prove this point), but also to know that they shouldn’t just stand by,” Gretchen said in her project notes. “Once they are aware of a problem, they should do something. People say, ‘I would do that, BUT…’ I’m taking out the but part of that. Do, with the follow through.”


Katie and Maddie are developing a summer reading program for students across the two-state area.

“As students, during the school year we have a variety of resources, like our peers, teachers and librarians to help us find great book recommendations,” they said in their notes. “This is great, but what happens when you don’t have access to these resources? Kids are leaving the books behind for summer camps, vacations, different schedules and lots of times because they just don’t know what books to read. We want to ensure that kids continue to read over the summer and feel supported with quality title ideas.”

The girls created a website with a book list and at the end of the summer, they’re having students vote for their favorite books. You can check out their website here –>


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