Fairgrieve Emoji-Themed AR Competition Gets Kids Reading

While dozens of Fairgrieve Elementary School students have taken the Accelerated Reader challenge, the increased exposure to increased literacy skills has been the star of the program.

Fairgrieve Accelerated Reader all-stars, from left, Isabella Salotto, Penelope Taylor, Savannah Mirabito and Logan Fitzgerald proudly stand near their displayed emojis, which signify all the AR reading they have done throughout the 2018-2019 school year.

Library media specialist Barb Senecal said this year’s student-chosen emoji-themed AR challenge has attracted both new and returning Fairgrieve students to the initiative, in which students are encouraged to both set and crush reading goals.

Senecal, who coordinated the effort for the 2018-2019 school year, said participants in grades two through six earn a cell phone icon when they first achieve five AR points.

AR points are earned when students achieve an 80 or higher on each AR test, per book read.

Senecal said each student has a personal AR goal and marking period goals.

Once they meet those goals, students earn emoji stickers for their phones.

Additionally, once students earn 100 points, they will receive additional big stickers to signify their level of achievement.

Senecal said while AR is optional for students, it’s also a great resource for them to pick up a good book and improve reading skills.

“It’s an extra motivator to read,” she said.

While the regular AR program ran just after the start of school and goes until the beginning of June, Fairgrieve first-graders have participated in a similar program with less aggressive point challenges.

During a recent Morning Express program, the sixth-grade team announced that a mini-competition amongst the sixth-graders resulted in Kerrie Phillips’ class taking the invisible crown.

Toward the end of the school year, all students who have earned the most AR points will be rewarded with a special celebration with Senecal and Principal Jean Sampsell.