Paul Banks Read-A-Thon Has Kids Hunting for Missing Books

Ariel Van Cleave
Paul Banks Principal Eric Pederson (in white coat) brought some sled dogs in for the kids.
Ariel Van Cleave photo

     Students at Homer’s Paul Banks Elementary School were reading almost non-stop over the last several weeks to solve the mystery of the missing books. The school’s annual read-a-thon had the kids on the hunt for Iditarod-themed clues.

     The kids would receive a new clue for each 12,000 minutes they’d read. The clues eventually lead the students to the treasure: the missing books.

     “We have kids that really don’t want to read,” Paul Banks Teacher Sally Burns said. “And they are reading like crazy during these things so it is a real motivator.”

     Burns helped organize this year’s event. Principal Eric Pederson said the school-wide event spurred a little friendly competition among the students, too. Even his son was swept up into it. 

     “I woke up at 5:30 a.m. and my kid is on the living room floor reading a book…. he’s just like ‘Dad, I’m trying to get some more minutes in before the end of it.’ (The) TV’s off, no radio, just reading. What parent doesn’t love that,” Pederson said.

     In total, the kids read a record-breaking 204,490 minutes. 

     To listen to the full story, click the audio link above.