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Reading is power
1 chasing king's killer  Rosa.jpg
Eighth-grade student Rosa Terrazas put many hours work in her literacy fair exhibit, garnering her a first place in the non-fiction category. She spared no detail, scorching paper edges and creating a collage of sentences from the book for the background. - photo by Margaret Hobbs

Teachers, librarians and educators realize reading is one of the most important things to do with a child to enhance their education. With the “Read 20 Minutes a Day” campaign, parents are encouraged to either read to, or listen to their child read to improve numerous skills. 

With this knowledge in hand, area school librarians hold Literacy Fairs for their students. Most schools held fairs within their student body, with winners advancing to the District Literacy Fair. 

The sixth annual Warren County District Literacy Fair was held recently at Warren County Middle School, with approximately 150 projects recognized. The event is open to students, kindergarten through 12th grades, with almost 600 projects submitted at area schools for competition.  

Nada and Darin Payne visited with their four children, especially to view daughter Natalie’s “Smile” exhibit for which she earned second place. 

Big brother Luke, 11, didn’t have an entry in the fair, but that didn’t stop him from reading. He just opened up “Positively Izzy” and started reading. 

“I am a big reader,” said Luke. “I usually read suspense books, and I even write some mystery stories.”

His parents realize the importance of reading, and stress it in their family life. 

“Reading is big at our house,” said Nada. “It’s a life skill, and I always say the more you read the more you know.”

Excitement filled the air as students view not only their exhibit, but others as well. 

Irving College eighth-grader Rosa Terrazas’ non-fiction display featuring the book “Chasing King’s Killer” by James L. Swanson was a hit, with attendees admiring her detailed display. Her exhibit featured a collage background of pages from the book, with photos of Martin Luther King Jr., James Earl Ray and the book’s cover jacket. 

“This exhibit is so well done,” said Irving College School teacher Leslie Wanamaker. “I’m just amazed at the detail she put into it and how vibrant and informative it is. I know folks are going to want to read this book after seeing this.” 

Terrazas admits she is not very artistic, and the project took many hours to complete.

“I just had a vision to use the white, black and red color scheme,” said Terrazas. “I enjoy history, and after reading the book, I have a new respect for King.” 

Winners in the various categories include: 


Fiction – Finley MacDonald, first; Macie Pepper, second; and Noah Matheny, third

Nonfiction – Sofia Pepper, first;

First Grade

Fiction – Baylee Baxter, first; Kingston Judkins, second; and Autumn Pepper, third 

Nonfiction – John Elam, first; Rex Miller, second; and Caysen Starkey, third

Second Grade

Fiction – Lorelei Livesay, first; Gabbi Molloy, second; and Nicolas Castaneda, third; 

Nonfiction – Ella Sutton, first; Emerly Mullins, second; and Wyatt Coffman, third

Class Project – April Lawson’s class, first;

Third Grade

Fiction – Taylor Whaley, first; Natalie Payne, second; and Greyson Key, third

Nonfiction – Sydney McCurry, first; Britton Mayfield, second; and Peyton Rucker, third

Class Project – Russell’s class, first; Stewart’s class, second; and California’s class, third; 

Fourth Grade 

Fiction – Hadassah Bryan, first; Gracelyn Garing, second; and Brantley Waldron, third

Nonfiction – Serenity Jordan, first; Chloe Wanamaker, second; and Aliyah Jaco, third

Class Project – Croyle’s class, first; Livesay’s class, second; and Mansfield’s class, third; 

Fifth Grade

Fiction – Henslea Carter, first; Taylor Omohundro, second; and Kacen Nunley, third

Nonfiction – Jacob Hold, first; Emma Kirby, second; and Ella Matheny, third

Class Project – California’s class, first; Heiser’s class, second; and Fuqua’s class, third; 

Sixth Grade

Fiction – Ashlie Ried, first; Alex Smith, second; and Devin Blair, third

Nonfiction – Amber Taylor, first; and Kaylee Kinslow, second

Class Project – Dyer’s class, first; Reep’s class, second; and Williamson’s class, third;

Seventh Grade

Fiction – Brooklyn Wanamaker, first; Allyson Blalock, second; and Kara Debord, third

Nonfiction – Wyatt McCormick, first; and Aiden Miller, second

Class Project – L. Wanamaker’s class, first; second; and third;

Eighth Grade

Fiction – Lauren Mansfield, first; Alex Castaneda, second

Nonfiction – Rosa Terrazas, first

Class Project – Stotts’ class, first; L. Wanamaker’s class, second; and L. Wanamaker’s class, third;

Ninth – Twelfth Grades

Fiction – Britney Brannan, first

Class Project – Bell Group, first; Medley Group, second; and Bell Group, third.