By Tiffany King
The holidays are a wonderful time for kids to curl up with a good book to read. That's why College of Coastal Georgia teacher candidates representing the Association of Coastal Educators (ACE) club wanted to give the gift of reading. Through generous donations, ACE gifted an entire class of third grade students at Burroughs-Molette Elementary School with books and blankets for their winter break.
"Blankets and Books for Burroughs" was a service project for the organization. ACE focuses on community outreach with the goals of forming strong connections with area school systems and promoting the value of education.
ACE officers Taylor Strehle, Caroline Williams, Mary Catherine Cambest, and Mary Katherine Carter presented each student in Joseph Allen's third grade class with a snuggly blanket to call his or her own, a Flat Stanley's Worldwide Adventures #12: Escape to California book, candy cane, and an encouraging message. One of the goals of the Glynn County School System is to have all third grade students reading on level. Strehle, who came up with the project idea, and ACE members agreed that the blankets and books would be a great way to encourage students to read.
The ACE officers handed out the gifts to the third graders, who were happily surprised. They, along with Lecturer of Special Education Dr. Caroline Geiken and Lecturer of Education Jessica Morris, then took some time talking with different students about reading.
Geiken was very proud of the teacher candidates.
"They [ACE members] really take initiative," Geiken said. "I love how they're giving back to the community. To show that passion is so amazing."