Can a few simple words make a difference? We believe middle school students across the country need a little encouragement to motivate them to keep reading and keep leading.
Encouragement and Recognition Improves Student Engagement
Studies have shown that just six more minutes of reading each day can make a difference between students being able to meet grade-level benchmarks, or falling short. Reading is a crucial component of everyday life and a foundation for academic and career success.
In middle school, many students are often unmotivated or discouraged by the challenges they face as they develop reading and writing skills. These negative feelings can prevent students from learning to enjoy their education and result in less time spent reading.
Regardless of age, people perform better when they feel positive about themselves. Recognizing students for their efforts and providing them with encouragement is one way to do that, hence improving outcomes. However, a majority of parents and students have reported that they do not get recognized for their achievements, nor do they get celebrated for reaching new levels of success.
To address this, the Read to Lead program is designed to recognize students for their achievements as they work through each episode. Students are awarded badges as they make progress and a leaderboard tracks the number of words they’ve read individually and as a class, highlighting their achievements. In addition to that, Classroom Inc. organizes events such as the Million Words Read Celebration Breakfast to celebrate the successes of students and educators who have reached significant milestones.
However, these efforts are not enough. To keep students reading and leading, they need encouragement on a more regular and personal basis.
#GivingTuesday, launched in 2012, is a global movement that encourages people to do good in the world through acts of kindness, large or small. It is not solely focused on the giving of monetary contributions or physical gifts – every act of generosity is important and helpful.
At Classroom, Inc., we decided to ask our donors for something very simple, and something that everyone can give – a few words. We believe encouragement is an essential ingredient to help youth persevere and reach new academic milestones. On #GivingTuesday, we launched a campaign to “Donate Words of Encouragement” to middle school students. These messages will be sent to Read to Lead students across the US to keep them engaged, improve their confidence, and empower them to take ownership of their learning!
We invited people to write words of encouragement to students across the country. These words of encouragement serve as powerful motivation for middle school youth to keep reading and leading. It reminds them that they have people believing in them and rooting for their success. By giving them a much-needed boost of confidence and motivation, these students will be inspired to strive for new academic heights.
During the course of the #GivingTuesday campaign, more than 90 people contributed words of encouragement online, and every day, more people continue to leave positive messages of support and motivation.
We could not have done this without your support, both in writing heartfelt messages to the students and in sharing the campaign to spread the word. From the bottom of our hearts, we thank everyone who has participated in the #GivingTuesday campaign and lent their support to students around the country.
Would you like to donate a word of encouragement to a middle school student? Head over to our website to leave a message of your own to help a student keep reading and leading!
About Read to Lead
Read to Lead, created by the nonprofit organization, Classroom Inc., uses the power of game-based learning to empower middle school students to build literacy, life, and career skills. Teachers can sign up for a free account to get started!