Clark, NJ – Ask any teacher and they will say that students should read, read, read! That is exactly what the students in Ashley Guarino’s third grade class did at Hehnly School this year.

The students in her class tracked their reading minutes from September 2014 until early May 2015 and then calculated them together. In total, the students in her class read over an estimated 30,000 minutes combined.

“It was thrilling to see how excited the students were to read each night and to track their minutes,” explained Guarino. “Not only were they working towards a reward, but they were strengthening their reading skills nightly.” 

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As an incentive for reading, Guarino added a twist. The minutes were to be used to obtain tickets for a Reading Auction that took place in the classroom. Students used earned tickets to win baskets filled with kid-friendly items, as part of a class Tricky Tray.

Prior to the auction, students wrote persuasive letters to various companies around the country asking for donations for their reading auction. All items received from the companies were used as part of the reading auction for the students. Some of the companies that contributed prizes were Charlie Brown’s Steak House, The Trenton Thunder Minor League Baseball Team, Claire’s, and Target.

“I am continually amazed at the creative ways that our teachers infuse learning with fun in our school,” explained Principal Shirley Bergin. “The students were thrilled to be rewarded for their hard work and their parents were very impressed with how many minutes were logged.”