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Kids get running start on reading


March 28, 2019

Annie Wooden

RUNNING START - Thompson Falls Elementary Principal Len Dorscher (left) leads students on a lap around the playground Monday morning to kick off the Running Start reading program, presented by the Thompson Falls Woman's Club.

For more than 20 years, the GFWC Thompson Falls Woman's Club has helped give kids a running start to loving reading. The Running Start program is held each spring in Thompson Falls, and this year it has special meaning. Former teacher Eileen Stone, who started the program locally, passed away last year. "We are delighted to sponsor the program in memory of Eileen," said Thompson Falls Woman's Club member Karen Gustavsen.

Stone started the program with her second-grade classes at Thompson Falls Elementary. The Reading is Fundamental program lost some of its support, Gustavsen said, but Stone wanted to keep inspiring kids to read, so the program transitioned into Running Start.

Courtesy Photo

DEDICATED TO EILEEN - Former teacher Eileen Stone was instrumental in keeping the reading initiative growing at Thompson Falls Elementary.

The program started Monday morning with Elementary Principal Len Dorscher leading the kindergarten through sixth graders on a run around the school playground. "We like to go for a jog to kick off the program and get the kids excited," Dorscher said.

Each student was given a book, purchased by the Woman's Club and First Security Bank. The Running Start program will go through April, with students keeping a log of books they read or have read to them, in the case of the younger students. For each 21 books or chapters read, the students will earn an entry for a prize drawing. Prizes are donated by the Thompson Falls Masonic Lodge and will include a bike or scooter for the kindergartener drawn and a Kindle for each of the winners drawn in grades first through sixth. The drawings will be held during the wrap-up ice cream party at the school on April 30.

The Thompson Falls Woman's Club has 17 members.


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