Reading is Leading program shows kids the joy of books

Purdue basketball player Isaac Haas reads to kids during the Reading is Leading event. (WLFI Photo/Jamie Long)
Purdue basketball player Isaac Haas reads to kids during the Reading is Leading event. (WLFI Photo/Jamie Long)

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (WLFI) — Local elementary students are visiting the Purdue University campus to learn the importance of reading.

The Mortar Board Honor Society hosted more than 100 kids for its Reading is Leading program. Students from Mintonye and Earhardt elementary schools listened to Purdue celebrities read to them from popular children’s books. Basketball player Isaac Haas, quarterback David Blough and the Purdue Silver Twins were some of the guest readers.

Mintonye second-grade teacher Christina Bymaster said getting kids to enjoy reading before third grade carries them through high school.

“It’s the last year where they leave primary elementary and they move into intermediate,” Bymaster said. “It’s where we’re trying to make sure that they have good, solid reading skills before they move on and get into harder material.”

Bymaster said the college students set a good example for the kids.

“They talk to them about where reading is taking them and that they had to know how to read to get where they are. It kind of puts the picture together. It’s more than reading for a grade or reading to do better at school, it’s reading for what they want to do in the future,” Bymaster said.

This is the fourth year Bymaster brought students to Reading is Leading. She said her students’ enthusiasm for books increases greatly following the event.