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Reading and lovin' it

Above, second graders Lacy Richter and Luke Wunderlich pick out a book for their prize at the "I Love to Read" finale.1 / 2
Prairie Wind Middle School principal and Minnesota Gophers lover, Scott Bjerke, sporting green hair and a UND hockey jersey - lost a bet with 5th graders that they couldn't read 2,000 Accelerated Reader points over the course of February (I Love to Read Month).2 / 2

Students at Perham's Heart of the Lakes Elementary School have more than doubled their reading goal for the month of February.

Designated as "I Love to Read Month," February is promoted as a time for students to dedicate themselves to reading, both in school and at home.

This year, the elementary students' goal was to read 175,000 minutes. By the end of the month, the total number of minutes read exceeded 430,000.

On Wednesday, February 25, the students celebrated their achievement with prizes, dancing, and singing in the school gymnasium. The theme for this year's "I Love to Read Month" was 'reading round-up, a western event.' Kids and teachers alike dressed the part, with cowboy hats scattered throughout the elementary gym.

Classrooms recognized for reading the most minutes were: 3-4th grade- Mr. Jordahl's 4th grade class; and K-2nd grade- Mrs. Kostynick's 2nd grade class.

There were several contests involved in the "I Love to Read" promotion, including 4th grade read-alouds to the kindergarten classes as a whole group.

The following students were winners, selected for using great vocal expression, having an appropriate book choice, and involving the kids: Zepherian Richardson, Reid Moser, Austin King, Tristan Groff, and Blake Franklin.

The top written story was composed by Madison Foerderer.

HOTL third graders held a poetry contest about the Old West. Winners were Morgan Hanson, Brianna Schwantz, Cierra Olson, Kate Nietzke, Madison McAllister, Tanner Knutson, and Audrey Swanson.

Second graders wrote about what they would have been if they lived in the Wild West. Winners were Anthony Reese, Luke Wunderlich, Lacy Richter, and Mylinda Johnson.

For the first graders, a poster contest was held. Jimmy Minten, Jaden Cummings, Casey Goins, Chase Belka, Hailey Wright, Lizzie Sazama, Brogan Schmidt, Aaron Lorentz, Owen Rastedt, Lucas Fisher, Carly Potrament, and Devin Meyer were selected as winners.

Kindergarten students participated in a coloring contest. Winners were Drake Schossow, Jake McAllister, Aviane Kerekes, and Mercedes Fresonke-Marthaler.

Classrooms also had a contest where they designed a "wanted" poster for their classroom door. The winning classroom in the K-2 hallway was Mrs. Hein's 2nd grade class. Mrs. Hausrath's 3rd grade class won the competition for the 3-4th grade hallway.