Muskogee Elementary school uses grant to buy books and keep boys reading

Posted at 8:48 PM, Oct 17, 2017
and last updated 2017-10-17 23:43:56-04

MUSKOGEE, Okla. - An elementary school is being proactive about getting students to read, and targeting one group in particular. 

Whittier Elementary Librarian Rogena McClain is on a mission to get boys reading. 

“They like high adventure, and exciting books," she said. 

Going through the bookshelves she realized they didn't match what students wanted to read. 

And the boys were checking out the same few books. 

“Finding books for boys to be interested in, that’s a challenge," said Whittier Principal Lisa Rogers. 

Finding fiction for everybody was a challenge. 

“I’m kind of into the dragons, magic and medieval, so there’s a lot of killing in them sometimes," said sixth grade student Riley Allen. 

“I say the Diary of the Wimpy Kid books because I haven’t read them all," said sixth grade student Aaron Alvarado. 

But wanting books the boys want to get their hands and actually getting them are two different things. 

“We do have money that’s set aside for the library and to buy books, but it’s not enough to buy what we want to buy," said Principal Rogers. 

But Miss McClain had a roadmap to success. 

Applying for and receiving a $2,000 grant. 

“She’s one of the ones that started really getting me into some of these new books," Riley said. 

“It’s really exciting to see them get excited about a book because they really get involved with the characters. They see themselves there," she said. 

And she knows it's absolute fiction reading is only about learning. 

“When I first came to this school I had moved from down south, and I didn’t have any friends. But when I found out about reading, that became one of my best friends," Riley said. 

But also friendship, excitement and imagination. 

 “I want them to see that there are books on the shelves that they may want to read.”

And it's safe to say watching the boys run to new books, the next chapter is bright. 

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