Tamaques Elementary Reading Marathon Breaks Records to Benefit Library and Sandy Victims
Principal Cullen revealed a new tiger-themed shaved and painted hair style, in homage to the school's mascot, Tami the Tiger.
Tamaques Elementary School held a Reading Marathon fundraiser this March, with a goal of raising $3,500 to purchase books for the Tamaques library and to assist Union Beach Memorial School after damage sustained from Hurricane Sandy. The students far surpassed the goal and the records of previous years; Tamaques students read a total of 378,000 minutes and raised $10,500.
For the marathon, students in all grades logged how many minutes they read or were read to each day, and teachers logged the class' progress. Students asked sponsors to pledge funds towards their reading accomplishments. At the completion of the marathon, students who raised the most amount of money and who read the most minutes were recognized at a special school assembly and attended their own private assembly with Snakes-N-Scales, a group that rescues reptiles and educates children about them.
The Reading Marathon Committee, chaired by Tamaques parent Barbara Wellnitz, held several events in March to highlight the Marathon and the importance of reading. This included the second annual Tamaques PJ Story Time, featuring Tamaques teachers and staff holding a pajama-clad night-time reading to students, and holding a used book drive for classroom libraries. Tamaques also hosted the celebrated children's author Elizabeth Levy.
At the conclusion of the reading marathon, on March 18th, in a school-wide assembly, Principal Cullen revealed a new tiger-themed shaved and painted hair style, in homage to the school's mascot, Tami the Tiger. This was the reward for the school having met and exceeded its reading goals. Principal Cullen also performed a song about reading to the music of "Call Me Maybe." His new hair style was created at Kennedy's All-American Barber Club on North Avenue.
Principal Cullen noted that while his new look (albeit temporary)and musical performance was "definitely embarrassing... it was worth it to show the students how proud I am of their efforts, and how important reading is to me and to the school." He joked, "I can only imagine what they come up with next year!"