---- — DERRY —The New Hampshire Fisher Cats visited Grinnell Elementary School recently to introduce the school to a special reading program.
The Fisher Cats and their mascot, Fungo, presented students with the Fisher Cats Reading Challenge, presented by the Community College System of New Hampshire. Under the free program, these students will be rewarded for increasing their reading beyond the normal school curriculum.
“This is a fun way to motivate and reward these students with our partners at the Community College System of New Hampshire,” Fisher Cats president Rick Brenner said. “Each yea,r this program has reached more students and schools, and we hope this year’s participants have fun while also understanding the long-term benefits of strong reading skills.”
During an assembly Fungo, assisted by Fisher Cats staff members, expressed his love of reading while laying out his challenge. When a student reads an additional five books beyond their usual school assignments, they will earn a pair of tickets to a Fisher Cats Reading Challenge Night scheduled in 2013 at Northeast Delta Dental Stadium, courtesy of CCSNH.
The special assembly, which also featured healthy eating tips and interactive games with the students, was one of approximately 40 that the Fisher Cats held during the off-season.
“New Hampshire’s community colleges are proud of the students at Grinnell Elementary School,” said Shannon Reid, director of communications for CCSNH. “Literacy is a key element of academic achievement, increasing children’s confidence and making them better communicators as they grow.”
In addition to the individual challenge, students will represent their school in a special team competition for the third straight year. Through a donation from the Fisher Cats Foundation, the school with the highest percentage of students who complete the Reading Challenge will win a $3,000 grand prize. Two additional schools with the next highest percentage of completion will each win $1,000 prizes.
Last year, the Reading Challenge reached 55,000 students in nearly 150 schools, with 10 schools generating 100 percent participation. Since its began in 200,7 more than 150,000 students have learned the importance of reading through the Fisher Cats and CCSNH.
The program is available at no charge to all schools in New Hampshire and northern Massachusetts. To receive the program information, contact the Fisher Cats Community Relations team at 641-2005.