Everybody Wins Iowa! Power Lunch reading engages Perry third graders

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Perry Elementary School third grade teacher Terra Webb, center, directs the proceedings at the first meeting of the Everbody Wins! Iowa Power Lunch reading program Friday. Volunteer readers are paired with about 20 third graders in the 10-week program.

everybody winsPerry’s version of the Everybody Wins! Iowa Power Lunch program launched successfully last week, bringing together more than a dozen child-and-adult reading pairs over the noon hour at the Perry Elementary School.

Third grade teacher Terra Webb of Perry is spearheading the Everybody Wins Iowa Power Lunch program at Perry Elementary. The aim of Everbody Wins Iowa is “to increase children’s success in school and life through one-to-one reading and mentoring experiences with caring volunteers,” Webb said.

The Perry version of the lunchtime literacy and mentoring program matches third graders with volunteers recruited from the community who serve as “reading partners” with the youngsters.

Everybody Wins! has proved successful in other school districts around the U.S., and in many cases the volunteer stays with the same child through several years if the child is returning to the program.

Perry’s Everybody Wins! Iowa Power Lunch team includes volunteers Julie Scheib, Kathy Turner, Wendy Martin, Lois Coleman, Joan White, Jeff Wilson, Misty Von Behren, Marlene Johnson, Jim Caufield and others.

The volunteers visit the school weekly, making their way to Webb’s classroom to enjoy time talking, reading and eating lunch with their students. Each volunteer reading partner commits to the program for one school year and is encouraged to continue with the same student from year to year during their elementary school years.

To make certain that the program functions smoothly, trained school coordinators oversee each program and are supervised by a professional staff member. Students are chosen by their teachers based on their academic performance, ESL needs or if they simply seem like they who could benefit from a positive, consistent mentoring experience.

For more information about Everybody Wins! Iowa Power Lunch program, call the school at 515-465-5656.

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Perry Elementary School third grade teacher Terra Webb, upper left, reads to students over their lunchtime while paraeducator Megan Maylum, right, stands by to assist. Volunteers Wendy Martin of Perry, bottom left, and Joan White of Perry, center, observe the process in the first session of the Everybody Wins! Iowa Power Lunch program.

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