Posted on Monday, Jan. 28th, 2013

River Hills Lions Club and Our Featured Roaring Reader: Aleyah Carter

January 12, 2013 at Kinard Elementary School, Clover
Submitted by: Morgan Lombardo

When I was asked to identify a Kinard student who truly appreciated the RHLC Roaring Readers, Miss Aleyah Carter was the first student to come to mind. She is currently in fifth grade and I dread the idea of losing her to middle school next year!

We talked about what she remembered about being at Kinard and the RHLC reading program. She absolutely lit up, smiled and just started to giggle a little bit while she thought back over the last few years. She was happy to share the names of the books, ones she chose and the ones she couldn’t get (one per student) and how much she looked forward to the next visit from the Lions. (Those Lions are celebrities when they come to Kinard – kids clamor for their attention and hugs abound!)
Aleyah was with the first group of Roaring Readers when she was in second grade and has thoroughly enjoyed their visits. The program started with three visits per year for second graders and since then, the program has expanded to include third, fourth and fifth graders – much to the delight of our fifth graders who thought they had “aged out” of the program.

I asked Aleyah what she hoped would happen with the Roaring Readers in the future. At first she said she hoped they would spread to middle school, but then she paused and added, “I hope they are here at Kinard when my little sisters come here.” Six months ago, Aleyah became a big sister to identical twin sisters and I hope her wish comes true.

The River Hills Lions Roaring Readers Program has been in place for 4 years. When Lions Katzy and CJ Nager initiated the project, the first year began with only students in the 2nd grade. Each student received 3 books over the year, and weekly visits from Lions as reading buddies. The success of the program expanded in the second year to include reading buddies and gifts of books (3 times a year) to every student in the 2nd and 3rd grade. In the third year, the program expanded to include all students in the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th grades. Now in the fourth year, the program includes all students in 2nd- 5th grades. Three times a year, students pick their favorite books from the Scholastic book company. With the aid of Scholastic book points the program spends around $1,800 dollars a year.