Students at Eustis Heights and Tavares elementary schools were treated to a special visit last week as representatives from Just Read, Florida! and the Daytona International Speedway brought a stock car to their campus to encourage them to read.
“One thing you can do at your home every day to make yourself a better student is to read for 20 minutes,” said Hope Colle, a representative from Just Read, Florida!, to a group of students at Tavares Elementary. “You’re going to open a book and let your imagination take you to the places in the book.”
Colle and John Pickard, a tour guide for the Speedway, stressed the importance of literacy to students and showed off the “Take the Lead and Read” car, which celebrated the statewide Celebrate Literacy Week on Jan. 14-18. After touring more than 40 schools across the state, the stock car is expected to take a pre-race lap at the Daytona 500 on Feb. 24.
“It’s about taking the lead to be the best reader you can be every day,” Colle said. “Work hard every day and get your engines revved up for reading.”
A few select students were given a chance to sit in the racecar and everyone had the opportunity to get an up close look at the racing machine.
National Geographic Learning, a sponsor of the “Take the Lead and Read” car donated books to each school to helps students continue their quest to be accomplished readers.
“Without a doubt we want to let students know that reading is important,” said Richard Solar, a sales consultant for National Geographic Learning.