Photo courtesy SISD

Myrtle Cooper Elementary connects with students, families with Strive to Thrive Storytime

Myrtle Cooper Elementary School invites families in its community every Tuesday to the Strive to Thrive Storytime, a read along with different guest readers every week.

“We are extremely lucky to have this great group of parents and students who support what we are doing at our campus,” said Myrtle Cooper principal Alicia Miranda. “We are developing that culture of reading in our school and highlight the importance of reading.”

The livestream draws some 30 viewers each week and yields excellent interaction from students, teachers and family members.

The students and families enjoy hearing from special guest readers, which have included SISD team members such as Superintendent José Espinoza, Ed.D., assistant superintendent Alisa Zapata, and library services coordinator Marcy Sparks.

Miranda, along with assistant principal Nora Macias and school librarian Elizabeth Chavez, developed the online story hour and launched it in August 2020. They have faithfully facilitated the engaging family reading time every Tuesday since.

Chavez said it is just as important to build relationships with their students during these unprecedented times the same way the school would during regular face-to-face instruction.

“Despite the challenges faced this year, we love seeing our students interact with us virtually every week,” Chavez said.

Strive to Thrive Storytime also is a big part of the school’s innovative dual language program. Many students who tune in are enrolled in the dual language program so stories are shared in both English and in Spanish to reinforce the bilingual aspect of their daily learning.

Espinoza recently read “¡Di Algo!” by Peter H. Reynolds in Spanish and translated some of the text in English.

“I can’t thank the entire Myrtle Cooper Elementary community for inviting me to read to these wonderful students,” Espinoza said.

Second-grade dual language student Andres Alvarado said he looks forward to tuning in to Storytime on Tuesdays. He loves to have his family involved, too.

“I like listening to these stories because it’s a way to share with my family and friends,” Alvarado said. “My favorite story we’ve read is Click, Clack, Moo, it is so funny.”