Gold coin in; Spanish Book Released – School News Network
wooded hills —Trevor Hollenbeck, a second-grade teacher, calls the large, brightly lit vending machine just inside the front doors of Ada Vista Elementary School a “school community builder.” Fourth grader Haylee Preston can prove it.
“Today I helped a first grader who looked sad,” Haylee said on a recent school day. “I asked if she was okay.”
Her teacher, Mayela Rosales, noticed her kindness and gave her a valuable gold coin, one of 20 discounts for a visit to the PTO-provided book vending machine. Receiving the gold coin made Preston feel special and important. And that gave her what she needed to activate the magic machine.
The machine only distributes titles in Spanish, responding to a need expressed by parents for reading at home. They wanted the books to continue students’ multilingual development at home to reinforce the Early-Total One-Way Spanish immersion experience at school.
Carillo’s principal Allison Woodside knew the value of the book vending machine from her previous job at Burton Elementary in Grand Rapids. She pitched the idea to the PTO at Ada Vista in 2021. “They immediately went for it,” she said.
PTO President Marie Clark added that the book vending machine is a focal point of the school, both in its proximity and its purpose. “It encourages reading in Spanish for children,” she said. “We did not hesitate to support him.”
Manufactured by Global Vending Group, “Inchy’s Bookworm” vending machines are designed to “reward positives, bridge the gap between literacy and engagement, and bring excitement to reading.”
So how is it at Ada Vista? One way is to give teachers a gold token each month to recognize a “superhero” student for helping others or their school. Any staff member can also award a coin to any student for being an excellent member of the community; some months, achievements like frequently speaking Spanish outside of class also earn students a gold coin. And, classmates, too, nominate their peers.
“It’s so positive when we all work together for children.”
– Second-grade teacher Trevor Hollenbeck
“It’s very exciting because you get rewarded for good things,” fourth-grade student Haylee said after receiving her gold coin. “It makes you want to help even more.”
Open Books ‘A New World’
Parents also participate in the effort. Clark noted that parents support restocking the machine with biannual Scholastic Book Fair proceeds and Amazon Wish List donations. She added that the experience for her own third-grade student was exciting and fun, and the selected book was a treasure.
“Choosing books from a shelf or a box just wouldn’t be so magical,” she said.
“When you create books that are as appealing as candy, we all win.”
– PTO President Marie Clark
Haylee was decisive when she approached the machine, jumped into her gold coin, and picked out “Luna Fortuna,” a book she had already read.
“It was a library book so I couldn’t keep it,” she said. “I chose it today so I could own it.
“Reading a book, you enter a new world,” she added, noting that reading in Spanish “can be overwhelming, but once you read more, you feel more confident.”
Mari DeJong, a third-grade student in teacher Lyndsey Burghardt’s class, picked out a book by its cover, which featured a cat. She thinks the book will be a “good and interesting” choice for reading at home.
When Principal Woodside de Carillo called each group of grade-level students in the hall to insert a coin into the machine, it was clear that there had been some discussion, browsing, and pre-screening by some students. Many older students experienced the first thrill of a machine-selling book last year.
“As they walk past the machine, students stop and look to see what books are available,” noted Hollenbeck, the second-grade teacher.
But the kindergartners were new to the experience, and their excitement was brighter than the lights on the sides of the machine. Many pointed to the title they wanted to drop off and laughed when he touched the drawer after pressing the buttons.
“I read it a few years ago. It was a library book so I couldn’t keep it. I chose it today so I could own it.
– Fourth grader Haylee Preston in “Luna Fortuna”
Hollenbeck summed up the program, which distributes around 100 books a month: “It’s so positive when we all work together for the children.
Clark, the president of the PTO, agrees wholeheartedly: “When you create books that are as appealing as candy, we all win.” The new selling experience, she says, “is all the fun of childhood combined.”
Comments are closed.