Tuesday, September 27, 2022

Oxford Schools Need Your Help in Helping Kids to Read

Photo of Oxford School District. Photo by Paris Payne

Local kids will soon have a new way of getting the reading time they need with the help of technology and some good-hearted residents of Oxford.

Teacher Chasity Arbuckle came up with the idea of posting readings on YouTube in order to give every child the opportunity of hearing someone read a story.

“We have numerous reasons why students don’t always have books at home or don’t always have parents that aren’t very busy with work or what have you,” Arbuckle said.

Called “Oxford Dream Line,” Arbuckle thinks this is a great opportunity for kids to try something new in a way that will be fun for them.

“I’m hoping that this sparks their interest in trying different genres, different types of literature,” Arbuckle said. “Maybe something they thought they couldn’t read because they couldn’t read every word on their own.”

The school district has already recruited some high school athletes to do some of the reading, and they’re expecting a few Ole Miss football players to take part in the project.

The Oxford Police Department is also involved. Because his family strongly encourages reading, Officer Zach Anderson was more than ready to help.

“I think anything that gets the kids interested and their brains moving and thinking those are goods things,” Anderson said. “And they get to use their imagination. They get to be kids for a second and turn off the TV.”

Instead, they’ll be turning to YouTube, but Arbuckle says that’s for practical reasons.

“While they may not carry that book around with them,” Arbuckle said. “We know many students and parents have that phone with them and getting onto a YouTube channel takes just a matter of a second.”

The Dream Line YouTube channel is expected to launch the first round of videos during the first week of May — just in time for summer reading.

The schools are still looking for volunteers, too. If anyone is interested in reading, contact the Oxford School District office — 662-234-3541.


Produced By: Paris Payne | ptpayne@go.olemiss.com

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