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Press Release

Subject: Celebrate Read Across America

NFL Moms and Mark the Magician Motivate Wise Owls to Read!!!

The 186th Street Elementary School students, staff, and parents enjoyed a Reading Pajama Party to celebrate Dr. Seuss’ birthday on Friday, March 1, 2013 with a reading celebration and a magic show. All of the students and parents beamed with excitement when a group of special guests from the Western Region of the Professional Football Players Mothers Association (PFPMA) stopped by to promote literacy. Gayle Jackson, the Western Region Coordinator and mother of Philadelphia Eagles star DeSean Jackson, brought some of the gridiron moms who live in the Southern California Area to 186th Street School to interact with the children and their families. National Football League (NFL) moms joining in the celebration were LaTonya Scandrick (Orlando Scandrick, Dallas Cowboys), and Kimberly Mallory (Stefan Johnson, Free Agent and USC Great).

Students were able to enjoy a choice of stories read by teachers, staff members, and NFL moms in different rooms with themes to promote a college going culture at the beginning of the event. The students heard fairytales in the USC Trojans’ Arena, animal stories in the UCLA Bruins’ Den, stories of peace to share an appreciation for diversity in the LMU Lions’ Lair, story time with Dr. Seuss in the 186th Street Arts Academy with the NFL moms, and pantomimes from stories beyond words by Dianne Bye, our Theatre Arts teacher. Students were treated to t-shirts, ice cream scoopers, hand sanitizers, measuring cups, and pictures from the sons of the NFL mothers. After the students finished listening to the stories, they received a free book to increase their pleasure reading libraries at home and support the academic play of reading 15-20 minutes every evening called by Principal Reed. The play is called Operation R.E.E.D. (Read Every Evening Diligently).

The highlight of the evening was having the children bring their sleeping bags into the auditorium, sit on the floor with their friends, and culminate the Reading Pajama Party with a fantastic Magic Show by Mark the Magician from “Magic with Aloha.” Mr. Kiyabu’s show kept the children and parents on the edge of their seats, laughing, clapping, and trying to figure out the magician’s magic. The sight of students and parents enjoying an evening of quality entertainment and family time made the event a great success of Reading Across America.

Yes, like Mr. Brown in one of our favorite Dr. Seuss books, our NFL moms, Mark the Magician, and teachers can moo to motivate children to read, can you?

Marcia Sidney-Reed
186th Street Elementary School

2012 California Distinguished School
1581 W. 186th Street
Gardena, CA 90248
(310) 324-1153