Third-Graders Read Together
4,200 Students Participate in Third-Graders Read Together During the 2022-23 School Year
Sno-Isle Libraries Third-Graders Read Together program is a partnership between the library and public schools throughout Snohomish and Island counties. The program encourages children to have fun and enjoy reading while honing their literacy and teamwork skills. Funded by the Sno-Isle Libraries Foundation with generous support from the Dorothy Koch Family Foundation, the program was able to achieve the following during the 2022-23 school year:
- Bring Third Graders Read Together to 65 schools and 4,200 third-graders in Snohomish and Island counties.
- Purchase 2,440 OTTER Award books for participating schools for students to read.
- Provide educators with a Teacher Guide to help them easily incorporate the featured books into their classroom or library.
- Give every student a bookmark and collectible stickers to build excitement around reading.
- Host two online events with Anoosha Syed, illustrator of Monster and Boy and Jonathan Messenger, author of The Alien Adventures of Finn Caspian attended by 600 third graders.
- Host two special online tie-in programs out of school hours:
- Oxbow’s Virtual Farm Adventure – Families could “step” into Oxbow’s world and learn how they organically grow food, the Snoqualmie Valley landscape where the farm is located, and the plants that humans (and other critters!) eat.
- Monster Scribble Art with FatBrush Workshop – Kids were encouraged to let their imagination flow creating their own monsters from scribbles.
These activities, paired with sticker rewards when completing a book, kept students engaged. “I loved the stickers on the bookmark,” said one third grader. “The event with the illustrator was super good.”
New in 2022 was including Washington Library Association OTTER Award nominated books as part of the program. The OTTER (Our Time To Enjoy Reading) Awards highlight books that are both engaging and developmentally appropriate for readers transitioning into chapter books. The Award focuses on “books kids like, not books adults think kids should like” and all books are voted by students, parents, and educators.
“It was wonderful to see the kids so excited about reading all of the books,” said Cindy, a teacher at Cedarhome Elementary.” Earning the stickers on the bookmark was a great motivator for the kids to keep reading. Thank you for this program!”
The 2023 OTTER Award Nominees
- Starla Jean by Elana K. Arnold, illustrated by A. N. Kang
- Monster and Boy by Hannah Barnaby, illustrated by Anoosha Syed
- Max Meow Book 1: Cat Crusader by John Gallagher (Penguin Random House)
- Missed Meal Mayhem (The Hunger Heroes, book 1) by Jarrett
- The Alien Adventures of Finn Caspian #1: The Fuzzy Apocalypse by Jonathan Messinger, illustrated by Aleksei Bitskoff
- Trouble at Table 5 #1: The Candy Caper by Tom Watson, illustrated by Marta Kissi
Why third grade?
Research shows that reading ability in third grade can be a tipping point for later academic and life success. Students not reading at grade level are less likely to finish high school which may have consequences later in life.
“Since 2013 Sno-Isle Libraries has partnered system-wide with our schools to support third graders by fostering a love of reading during a critical age,” said Joy Feldman, Sno-Isle Libraries Early Literacy Coordinator. “This is the time when students shift from learning to read and begin reading to learn."
“We had a blast with Third Graders Read Together. The kids loved this. Thank you to everyone at Sno-Isle Libraries that made this program possible.” - South Whidbey Elementary Library
Thank you to our corporate and community partners for their generous support!