[Chisago Lakes Baptist School administrator Michael Elliott, happily joined the kids in wearing “prairie duds” in celebration of reaching the school reading goal of 40,000 minutes during “I Love to Read” month in January. Top readers include: Top row (L to R) Levi Reed, Aaron Brink, Ava Lee, Nolan Anderson (top all school reader), and Michael Elliott, CLBS administrator. Front row (L to R) Rebecca Lutgen, James Rutten, Ava Burmeister, and Lincoln Jewson.]

Students of Chisago Lakes Baptist School proved that reading can be lots of fun! The elementary school’s “I Love to Read” month began January 3rd. The morning began with a magic show called “Amazing Science,” presented by local professional magician, Norm Barnhart. Several students were invited to help with the tricks, and all were amazed as Norm related that magic is science. Preschool and kindergarten classes read Little House books during class, while first through sixth grade classes participated in an all school read-aloud, Prairie School, by Lois Lenski. Daily prizes were awarded to the first student who found a golden snowflake that was hidden throughout the school. For ten minutes each day, students were invited to “stop, drop, and read.” Occasionally a mystery reader read a selection from a well- known book over the loudspeaker. Each week, the names of children who returned their reading logs were put into a drawing for one of a dozen books.

Students read 54,142 minutes outside of class, surpassing the school goal of 40,000 minutes in just four weeks. On Friday, February 3rd these eager readers were rewarded with a celebration, which included watching the “Founders Day” episode of “Little House on the Prairie” while enjoying popcorn and pop. Children were encouraged to dress as they would have on the prairie, or in western garb.

Nolan Anderson, 2nd grade, won first place and topped the charts by reading 2654 minutes and received a new 2017 Guinness Book of World Records. Rebecca Lutgen, 3rd grade, came in second, reading 2530 minutes and third place went to Ava Lee, 5th grade, reading 2310 minutes. Top readers for each class were: Ava Burmeister, K4 preschool; Lincoln Jewson, kindergarten; James Rutten, 1st grade; Nolan Anderson, 2nd grade; Rebecca Lutgen, 3rd grade; Aaron Brink, 4th grade; Ava Lee, 5th/6th grade, and Levi Reed, 2192 minutes from homeschool. Top readers received a new book, a balloon, and an award.

Earlier in the school year grandparents and parents were asked to sponsor new books. Over 100 new books, many of which were Newbery Award winners, were welcome additions to the school’s library.

Chisago Lakes Baptist School offers a foundational Christian curriculum, small class sizes, and dedicated caring teachers. CLBS holds classes for preschool (4 year olds) through twelfth grade and is located off Highway 8 in Chisago City. For more information or a tour of the school, contact Michael Elliott, school administrator, at 651-257-4587, ext. 5.