Coral Canyon Elementary students win new wheels in ‘Bikes for Books’ program

Coral Canyon Elementary School students pose with new bicycles won in the "Bikes for Books" program, Washington City, Utah, May 18, 2018 | Photo by Jeff Richards, St. George News

WASHINGTON CITY — Twelve Coral Canyon Elementary School students – a boy and a girl from each grade level – received new bicycles at the end of the school year, thanks to the inaugural “Bikes for Books” program sponsored by the St. George Masonic Lodge No. 33.

At a schoolwide assembly Friday morning, a dozen lodge members were on hand to present the bikes to the winners, who were randomly selected from among the many hundreds of entry tickets submitted throughout the school year. Students received a ticket each time they read a book and filled out a short entry form.

A few of the winners of new bikes in Coral Canyon Elementary’s “Bikes for Books” program, Washington City, Utah, May 18, 2018 | Photo by Jeff Richards, St. George News

One of the winners, fifth-grader Madisyn Crandall, said she didn’t know how many books she read, but it was “a lot.” Her favorite book was “Tuck Everlasting,” she said.

Computer lab teacher Suzie Christensen, who spearheaded and oversaw the reading incentive program, said Crandall was one of numerous students who were able to bring their reading scores up by at least one grade level or more.

Before announcing the winners, David Reinitz, the St. George Masonic Lodge’s senior warden, thanked the students for participating.

“All of you are winners because the purpose for having this program is to have you be better readers and love books,” Reinitz said. “I’m really proud of you. You have worked so hard and read so many books this year. If you didn’t win a bike, we’re going to do this again next year.”

The following students were named the winners, with each receiving a bicycle, a helmet and a T-shirt: kindergartners Jayce McKinney and Malea Coats, first-graders Kolio Lafaele and Lucy Hendrickson, second-graders Cayden Trimble and Paizley Torres, third-graders Corbin Conner and Kennilee Spenlove, fourth-graders Jaxon Lay and Taycee Hintze and fifth-graders Parker Orr and Madisyn Crandall.

In addition to repeating the program at Coral Canyon next year, Reinitz said the St. George Masonic Lodge is planning to expand it to three other schools as well.

Coral Canyon Principal Jennifer Eggleston said the school’s reading scores as a whole saw a notable increase this year, and the improvement in literacy has also helped the school succeed in other areas.

Read more: Coral Canyon Elementary partnership wins $100,000 STEM grant

Warrin Richins, the school’s Title 1 site coordinator, noted that Coral Canyon Elementary recently joined an elite group of schools in the state that have been officially designated as state STEM schools, in recognition of their rigorous program focus on science, technology, engineering and mathematics.

“Our school has had a very big year with computer science and STEM,” Richins said, noting that Coral Canyon is the first elementary school to be a STEM partner with Utah State University Extension. The school also received nearly $100,000 in grant funds from the Utah STEM Action Center to go toward computer science, had half of its faculty attend a computer science educators conference and started a popular STEM Adventure after-school club.

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1 Comment

  • comments May 22, 2018 at 10:56 pm

    the freemasons huh… makes me wonder

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