WESTFIELD, NJ — Tamaques Elementary School students read for a collective total of more than 150,000 minutes in eight days and raised almost $9,000 for their school library and local charities during their fourth annual Reading Marathon last week, more than doubling their initial fundraising goals.
Organized by Tamaques volunteers Barbara Wellnitz and Marcy Lechner, the Reading Marathon encourages students to read through class contests and rewards for most minutes read. An evening PJ Story Time, during which Tamaques staff members read to pajama-clad students, a school-wide assembly featuring a magician/ventriloquist and a Tamaques-themed Mad Lib read by Principal Cullen were highlights of the Reading Marathon. Students collected pledges for their reading time and winning readers and fundraisers were awarded with an additional special assembly.
"The students and teachers did a great job accepting our challenge, far surpassing their goals,” said Wellnitz. “We are really proud of all their hard work. It's great when you can combine reading with helping others, and once again our Tamaques community has risen to the challenge."
Imagine, a Center for Coping with Loss; The Birthday Box; and the Plainfield YMCA (for emergency housing and aftercare programs) received a portion of the funds raised.