Woodbridge Elementary Reading Night brought to life


Recently, upon arrival at Woodbridge Elementary’s Reading Night, students were greeted not only by teachers but by “Louie,” the mascot of the Bowie Baysox baseball team, and a 7-foot cow from Chik-Fil-A.

Many of the children came not only to hear great stories but to display their own costumes as an extension of the Woodbridge monthly reading program incentive for October, which was to dress as a literary character from a book they had read.  Characters spotted included Laura Ingles Wilder from “Little House on the Prairie,” an elf from “Elf on a Shelf,” and Curious George.

“Mystery readers” were nestled in eight locations throughout the school.  Books came alive as they were read by people who shared literature through both their books and authentic personal experiences. 


“Pirate Adam” of Urban Pirates donated his time and talent to reading night. He read to students, incorporating song and dance, and even let them chose a present from his pirate chest. Suited in a white lab coat, “Eric Energy” captivated children with his student-friendly translation of the scientific material in his books. 

School parent Mr. Lazelle, a Baltimore City firefighter, came dressed in full gear and read about fire trucks, stations, and how firefighters battle blazes. Readers also included entrepreneur and author James Foster and the UMBC Women’s Lacrosse Team.

Local BCPS educators also read to students, including Assistant Superintendent Verletta White, Nancy Baumann of the Office of Language Arts, and Debbie Phelps, principal of Windsor Mill Middle School. 

Staff, parents, and students all benefited from the unique opportunity presented by those who gave their time to make literature come to life in a way they will not soon forget.

Story and photos by Elizabeth Ciganek, Good News Ambassador and vocal music teacher, Woodbridge and Hillcrest Elementary Schools.
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