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Read Across America

Savannah Preston, a Holloman Elementary School student, poses in front of a video of her father, Col. Thomas Preston, 49th Maintenance Group commander, reading for Read Across America March 10, 2021, on Holloman Air Force Base. Leaders of the community volunteered to read books to the students to help celebrate Read Across America. (Courtesy photo)

Savannah Preston, a Holloman Elementary School student, poses in front of a video of her father, Col. Thomas Preston, 49th Maintenance Group commander, reading for Read Across America March 10, 2021, on Holloman Air Force Base. Leaders of the community volunteered to read books to the students to help celebrate Read Across America. (Courtesy photo)

Holloman Elementary School students watch prerecorded videos online of volunteers reading for Read Across America, March 10, 2021, on Holloman Air Force Base. Pre-recorded videos allowed students and volunteers to have a safe distance from each other while also having the ability to re-watch the story at any time in the future. (Courtesy photo)

Holloman Elementary School students watch prerecorded videos online of volunteers reading for Read Across America, March 10, 2021, on Holloman Air Force Base. Pre-recorded videos allowed students and volunteers to have a safe distance from each other while also having the ability to re-watch the story at any time in the future. (Courtesy photo)

HOLLOMAN AIR FORCE BASE, N.M. --

Holloman Elementary School students virtually celebrated Read Across America with members of Holloman AFB leadership to promote reading during the first week of March.

Read Across America is the United States’ largest celebration of reading; motivating children and teens to read events, partnerships, and reading resources that are about everyone, for everyone.

America is approximately 3,000 miles from coast to coast, which is where Holloman Elementary School based its goal of reading 3,000 minutes as a school during the month of February. They exceeded their goal by a large margin and read a total of 54,801 minutes.

“Read Across America for our school is everything for the month of February and leading into March,” said Tara Risser, Holloman Elementary School librarian. “It is really critical to encourage our teachers, our staff and everyone here a Holloman to promote to our families to get involved and read with their children.”

The school had a tournament of books this year, using the Reading with Leaders, where leaders of the community volunteer and read a book to the students, and the students decide which book was their favorite.

Because the elementary school implemented hybrid learning this year, the volunteer readers video recorded themselves reading for students to watch at a later time. Pre-recording allows students and volunteers to have a safe distance from each other while also having the ability to re-watch the story at any time in the future.

Some of the volunteer readers included Holloman’s commanders and chiefs, their spouses, as well as Laurie Anne Goodier, 49th Wing Child & Youth Education Services School liaison.

“I think it’s really cool that we’re partnering with leadership, that we have so much support from people in our community to read to our kids,” said Rachell Lynn, Holloman Elementary School principal. “All the students who participate in the Reading with Leaders will get a special certificate from Col. Keeney.”

“We’re going to be finishing this week with a book fair so children can have more books in their homes to share with their families,” said Risser. “Our entire school has really stepped up, as well as our team here at Holloman, and just became a huge key in helping these children build their reading skills at home, at our school, and in our community.

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