Helena elementary schools celebrate "The Fabulous First" - KXLH.com | Helena, Montana

Helena elementary schools celebrate "The Fabulous First"

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Photos from Helena Education Foundation website Photos from Helena Education Foundation website

Starting Thursday more than 600 of Helena's first-grade students will ring in the new school year with a free new hard-cover book, thanks to the Helena Education Foundation (http://www.hefmt.org/). 

The event is called "The Fabulous First."

The Helena Education Fund, as well as other sponsors, will give new books to first graders.

At Hawthorne School, MTN News talked with with two of their 5th-graders about their remembrance of The Fabulous First when they were 1st graders.

"I was really excited to receive my book and I think that night I read my book like three times before I went to bed, so it was pretty exciting," said Luke McCarthy.

Luke said he loved his book and thought it was a nice read.

"It was about like a man, telling a story about when he went fishing and he caught a fish with like a bunch of hooks in his mouth because he was so big, he couldn't catch the fish," said Luke.

Rylee Bronlie, also a 5th grader at Hawthorne, said she was thrilled to get a new book when she was a 1st grader.

"It was pretty exciting because I actually got to read with one of the older 5th graders, and it was super exciting, my mom helped me read my book about a couple of times!" said Rylee Bronlie, 5th grader.

The Helena Education Foundation, with support from several partners including The Montana Book Company, Blue Cross-Blue Shield of Montana, Chelsey Frank, Allegiance Benefit Plan Management Systems, Helena Kiwanis, Mark and Lynn Etchart, Tom and Scottie Trebon, and Luxan & Murfitt, gives a hardcover children's book as a gift to each first grader in the school district.

In addition to providing financial support for Fabulous Firsts, sponsors and their representative will visit the schools to enjoy the opportunity to read with the first graders.

Each school celebrates in its own way— 3rd graders students wrap books for their 1st grade “buddies;” some ask current 5th graders to write letters to each 1st grader about their own experiences as Fabulous 1st graders; some teachers write messages to each student about hopes and goals for the year. Books are selected annually by a committee led by Dr. Deb Jacobsen, principal at Hawthorne School, In addition to each student’s receiving a book to keep, full sets of this year’s selections are also purchased for the school libraries and the Lewis and Clark Library.

This year's titles include:
Mother Bruce
by Ryan Higgins

Thunder Boy Jr.
by Sherman Alexie

It’s Okay to Make Mistakes
by Todd Parr

Lady Liberty’s Holiday
by Jen Arena

Little Red Gliding Hood
by Tara Lazar

Madeline Finn and the Library Dog
by Lisa Papp

There’s a Lion in my Cornflakes
by Michelle Robinson

You’re Here for a Reason
by Nancy Tillman

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