April 22, 2013

On Tuesday, April 23, Hanmer’s École Notre-Dame students and staff will celebrate their passion for reading as part of World Book Day activities. Several reading-based activities will take place for students from Junior Kindergarten to grade 8 and their parents. At 11:40 a.m., the school will celebrate the success of its « Get Hooked on Books » (Mordez dans les livres) program with a gathering. From 1 to 2:45 p.m., local author and story teller Rachel Desaulniers will offer a writing workshop to grade 5 to 8 students. Members of the media are cordially invited to take part in the activities at École Notre-Dame, located at 4503 Dennie St. in Hanmer.


Junior Kindergarten to grade 8 students at École Notre-Dame began their participation in the “Get Hooked on Books” program last November as part of efforts to promote reading among students and contribute to their academic performance. Through the support of Topper’s Pizza, once a student reads 25 books, he or she receives a pizza coupon as a reward. The initial target was to have the entire school body read 7,500 books by the end of June, which represents an average of 25 books read per student. This goal has been largely surpassed as students have read by now no less than 10,250 books. The aim is to reach a grand total of at least 14,000 books by the end of the school year.

“Research shows that reading skills greatly influence a child’s success at school,” statedMrs. Sylvie Bazinet, Vice-Principal of École Notre-Dame. “Our project has proven to be a huge success, with students becoming avid readers. Taking great pride in their passion for books, they enrich their vocabulary and discover new authors. Moreover, they have gotten into the habit of recounting the stories they read among themselves, and this learning activity has now become an integral part of their daily lives.”

The school staff, helped by parents and volunteers, has been encouraging students to adopt reading as a fun activity. École Notre-Dame librarian Mrs. Hélène Jiricka is carefully tabulating the reading progress of each student as well as the total count per class and for the school as a whole. Each week, the names of students who reach the 25-book mark are read out over the student radio air waves. In a move to raise student motivation to even higher levels, two $25 gift cards from the Librairie du Centre are presented to randomly selected students and in June, the school will draw the name of one lucky student among its avid readers and present the winner with a Kobo e-reader.