READ 2021: We Love Reading!
33 minutes and 41 seconds. This Friday morning the Schechter Manhattan community will stop our regular school routine to read for 33 minutes and 41 seconds. Of course we read every day at Schechter Manhattan, but each new year we also take time for a community reading event. We read together for the number of seconds of the new year: this year, 2021seconds.
Our annual reading event highlights the value of reading in our lives. While we won’t be able to gather together physically in the Ulam, as we did in the past, we will gather virtually, so that we can continue to strengthen our students’ love of reading.
Reading together sends our students the powerful message that they are a part of a community of readers. Tomorrow, students in grades 2-8 will be in mixed grade groupings so that students can see each other and their teachers reading. They will be able to look around the virtual rooms and see peers and adults reading a variety of books of all sorts.
The reading event also gives students the experience of being immersed in reading, so that even though there are many people in the room, we each get lost in our own reading. I am impressed, year after year, with how focused and quiet the room full of children is while we read. I expect to see the same during our READ 2021 program tomorrow, with everyone busy and deeply engaged.
At Schechter Manhattan, we aspire for our students to love reading. We want them to view reading as an enriching part of our lives both in and out of school, as well as the central skill for academic achievement. Celebrating reading instills in our students the value of reading: to expand our minds, explore new ideas, travel to fantastic places, spur our imaginations, and connect us to other people. This shabbat, I encourage you to find your own 33 minutes and 41 seconds (or more) to curl up with a book.