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Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain

Singing as Glinda the Good Witch of the North is Leonard teacher Sarah Ashley. (click for larger version)
April 04, 2012 - Following the Yellow Brick Road isn't the only way to get to the Emerald City.

Leonard Elementary students learned they can simply read their way to the shining city in the merry old Land of Oz.

Using the classic 1900 children's novel "The Wonderful Wizard of Oz" as their inspiration for March is Reading Month, Leonard students read a grand total of 169,802 minutes last month, far exceeding the school's goal of 90,000.

"I saw children reading and reading and reading," said Staci Dennis, the reading specialist at Leonard. "They read by themselves. They read in groups. They read with partners. This was a fantastic month and I have to be honest, I'm sad it's coming to an end, but it has been fun."

Leonard's top readers were Ashley Lundy, Kristen Poche, Lexi Seitz, Shane Ross, Mackenzie Carter, Zach Townsend, Madison Houck, Gianna Cantini, Kylee Henson, Gabe Losee, Diya Kanwar and Krystina Noaker.

Teacher Amy Granger's fifth-graders truly went somewhere over the rainbow. They read the most in the entire school, accumulating a grand total of 35,551 minutes.

Teacher Jenny Coggins' fifth-graders were the first ones to reach the class goal of 10,000 minutes and they did it in only seven days.

For their efforts, they each received an emerald candy ring.

Coggins' class eventually read a total of 24,860 minutes for the month.

To help celebrate March is Reading Month, Leonard's own Cooper Standard Automotive (180 E. Elmwood St.) gave every elementary student a book to encourage their efforts.

Great job, Leonard Elementary!

CJ Carnacchio is editor for The Oxford Leader. He lives in the Village of Oxford with his wife Connie and daughter Larissa. When he's not busy working on the newspaper, he enjoys cigars/pipes, Martinis/Scotch, hunting and fishing.
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