Letter to Editor: Seventh Grade Read thanks

To the Editor:

It takes a village to run an event with nearly 100 seventh graders from five different schools in one location.

The Island Readers & Writers (IRW) 7th Grade Read held at Camp Beech Cliff on Oct. 24 brought all seventh graders from Mount Desert Island Regional School System (MDIRSS) schools together for a day of activities inspired by Gary Schmidt’s book “Trouble.”

Twelve teams led by community volunteers competed against one another in friendly activities such as the low ropes course, trivia, a relay race, creating a timeline of the book and baking apple crisps over a campfire.

We’d like to extend our gratitude to MDIRSS Julie Meltzer, the district’s director of curriculum, assessment and instruction; and Administrative Assistant Karen Shields for their support in making this successful event possible.

Thank you to all of the English Language Arts teachers and support staff who helped prepare their seventh graders by reading “Trouble” and provoking thoughtful questions and discussions. It was clear the students had delved deeply into the story and its many themes. The “Trouble” book trailers created by groups of seventh graders were a creative and humorous treat.

A special thanks goes to Camp Director Matt Cornish who joined IRW Director of School Programs Alison Johnson, Program Assistant Lisa Herrington and Office Administrator Beverly Lamoureux in planning this year’s event.

We could not have had such a successful event without our awesome volunteers, who took time out of their lives and jobs to share their love of reading with kids. Thank you to: Jenna Beaulieu, Michelle Finn, Melissa Haas, Lisa Horsch-Clark, Jenny Jones, Helen Koch, Nancy McKechnie, Jayson Pelletier, Melinda Rice-Schoon, Carol Schaefer and Jeff Young.

Finally, thank you to the seventh graders of MDIRSS who enthusiastically participated in the day’s activities, showed respect to our volunteers, staff, venue and to our special guest author Gary Schmidt.

It was a terrific day!

Taylor Mace

Island Readers & Writers

Southwest Harbor

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