Chatfield Elementary School students enjoyed a visit from Elvis on their lunch hour this past Friday. Elvis tribute artist Brad Boice got them all shook up about reading.
Chatfield Elementary School students enjoyed a visit from Elvis on their lunch hour this past Friday. Elvis tribute artist Brad Boice got them all shook up about reading.
A special celebrity appearance got the Chatfield Elementary School (CES) students "all shook up" as Elvis tribute artist Brad Boice and Elvis impersonator Chuck Johnson visited them during the lunch hour on Friday, Feb. 8. The performance was held as part of the annual reading campaign during which students in grades kindergarten through sixth shake up their literacy.

"Chatfield Elementary School has done February 'I Love to Read Month' celebrations for many years," said Action 100 reading program coordinator Elissa Johnsrud, still smiling after watching students enjoy their visitors.

"This year, because we have been so focused on Action 100, we are using 'I Love to Read Month' as a celebration of all our success so far this year," she added.

"I Love to Read Month" and CES's reading program, Action 100, fit page in page, as Action 100's tenets encourage students to enjoy reading a book at least half an hour a day, making "steps" in their reading goals.

"This month our goal is to be at 400 steps by the beginning of February and 500 steps by the end. We are celebrating all our hard work and success with Action 100," Johnsrud said. "We kicked off the month with a 'reading blitz' where students had guest readers and earned 10 steps - we had 13 volunteers come to school last Friday to read."

Those volunteers included Randi Kallis from the Post Bulletin, parents Lanae McBroom, Holly Allen, Alicia Hinkley, Margo Tuohy, Al Dietz and Allison Allen, Randy Chapman from the Post Bulletin, Tom Garret from Y105, Aubrey Helm from KTTC, Aaron Miliander from the Chatfield Police Department, CES Principal Craig Ihrke, and Chatfield Superintendent Ed Harris.

"Some classrooms have guest readers coming in this month as well," Johnsrud added.

This past Friday's lunch hour was a rockin' good time as Boice took requests from students after he performed "Viva Las Vegas" and other Elvis standards such as "All Shook Up."

Johnson, dressed as a roly-poly Elvis in his "later years," danced in the aisles between cafeteria tables.

This Friday and next, students will play "Chatfield Idol" during lunch, and on March 1, they'll be rewarded for their reading progress with a "Rock-n-Recess" session.

"They'll have an extended lunch recess with music by a KROC DJ," Johnsrud explained, adding that the excitement motivates students to continue reading anything and everything they are interested in reading.

"It helps us keep the focus on reading and keeps students excited about reading at a time of year where reading tends to slow down," she added. "The students and teachers are working extremely hard in reading this year, and we are seeing wonderful growth and motivation in our readers."

She thanked students for their efforts.

"Keep reading to be at 500 steps by the end of February," Johnsrud encouraged. "And parents can help them. Most importantly, celebrate all their success and be proud of how hard they have worked at school and home this year."

Lastly, Johnsrud expressed her appreciation to the community for its support of the Action 100 program and "I Love to Read Month."

"Thank you to Brad Boice and Chuck Johnson for coming in to serenade the students, and thank you to all the guest readers who gave up a morning to come and read with our students. Chatfield Elementary is thankful to have so much support and encouragement!"