Brandywine students reading to their principal

Published 9:22 pm Saturday, November 15, 2003

By By BEN RAYMOND LODE / Niles Daily Star
NILES - When it gets cold and miserable outside, it's nice to know there's one day each week when you don't have to play outside during recess.
At least that's the case for Merritt Elementary's first and second graders.
Karen Weimer, Merritt's principal, has started a new first and second grade recess reading program that will take place in the school's library once a week throughout the winter.
The program will end after spring break next year when the weather starts to warm up again.
But she also said the program gives the students who enjoy reading an opportunity to have some quiet time to read while at school.
Twenty students can take part in the program each time and the day the program is held depends on Weimer's schedule.
On Friday, 18 students sat cross-legged on the library's carpeted floor with their large children's books in their laps.
Weimer, who said she will sometimes read to the students herself, sat on the floor right in front of the students.
Sarah Colcord read a story about a girl celebrating her birthday during the Friday reading session.
Colcord said she likes to stay inside and read when it's cold outside.
That the reading program began on Friday - a day with cold wind and temperatures almost dropping below freezing in the morning - may perhaps to Colcord have come like manna from heaven.
Zachary Boyce also enjoyed being able to read with the principal during recess.
However, he thinks the reading program also gives the students a chance to get to know their principal a little better.
Weimer, who encouraged the students to swap books when they were done reading the book they had brought with them, said a similar program has been in place at Merritt before.
But that was before she became principal.
Besides reading with and for the children, Weimer said the reading program gives her a chance to spend more time with the school's first and second graders.
She said as a principal, the daily schedule is busy and little time is open to be around students.
As the recess reading came to an end and the students lined up to be given a book mark each before going back to their classrooms, it seemed like the first day of the reading program was a success.
And, Weimer said she was glad to see so many students turn up to read.