Tracking the Storm

Community: Are you Smarter than a Fifth-Grader?

Wednesday, 05.25.2011 / 10:06 AM ET / Tracking the Storm
By Katharine Kelley
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Community: Are you Smarter than a Fifth-Grader?


Are you smarter than a fifth-grader?

Katharine Kelley
Some of you might be familiar with that show or board game, but if not, it basically tests your knowledge against fifth-grade curriculum. I like to think that I possess the knowledge to come out victorious if I went head-to-head against a fifth-grader. However, this past Monday, many fifth-graders (and one fourth-grade student) proved to me that they could give me a run for my money, especially when it comes to interpreting life lessons from books.

This past Monday, we hosted the fourth annual Pick Up a Book and Read Essay Recognition Luncheon at the RBC Center to recognize 20 essay finalists. We invited the students’ parents and teachers to help celebrate their reading and writing achievements. Each student opted to participate in the contest by writing a two-page essay on one of their favorite books they read during the reading portion of the program. The guidelines of the essay ask that each student provide a brief plot summary, discuss what he/she liked best and least about the book, and lastly, what he/she learned from the book.

Hurricanes defenseman Joe Corvo, Stormy and radio play-by-play announcer Chuck Kaiton were also on hand to praise the students for their reading and writing achievements. Corvo got to the lunch early and went from table to table visiting with each student, signing autographs, taking pictures and discussing the importance of reading. He also helped Stormy pass out Certificates of Excellence and Cam Ward bobbleheads to each participating student. Chuck Kaiton gave a keynote speech on the importance of reading and writing and how it applies to his profession.

Then comes my favorite part - the top five essays read aloud by the students. This is the point where I questioned whether or not I was indeed smarter than a fifth-grader. The students confidently stood behind a podium and faced 80 guests while they individually shared their essays with the crowd. I don’t ever remember having the poise to stand in front of 80 people (mostly adults) and read an essay I wrote. Moreover, each student shared his/her personal lessons learned from the book.

• One student stood up against bullying thanks to a book called “Crissa.” She also gave a shout-out to her mom for caring and being involved in her life (this lesson really made my eyes water, especially with how prevalent bullying stories are in the news).
• After reading “The Batboy,” another student learned that you always have to give people second chances, and if things are not going your way, don’t give up.
• Similarly, another essay reader learned from “Tuck Everlasting” that everyone has a time to live and a time to die, and we have to take advantage of the life we are given.

These are just brief examples of the lessons shared, and I definitely learned something from each student who wrote an essay. The top five essay writers also went home with gift certificates for The Eye and autographed pucks. All in all, it was a great day, and it gave us all a little reminder that we can all be better people.

The Essay Recognition Luncheon generally signifies the end of the Pick Up a Book and Read incentive reading program. This year, 2,500 students from 47 different schools participated in the reading portion. The Charlotte Checkers helped expand the program into Mecklenburg County, and nearly 1,000 students participated across the Charlotte area. We have also been wrapping up the assemblies that the top three reading schools earned. We’ve already been to Penny Road Elementary, and we’re headed to Lincoln Heights Elementary next week. Hopefully soon after, we’ll be making our way to Sanford to visit Deep River Elementary School. The top three schools are treated to an assembly with Stormy where they participate in some trivia and then enjoy equipment relay races against competing classrooms.

We are excited about the continuing expansion of the program, and we feel that it offers many rewarding opportunities for hard working students. And, don’t forget…if you get the chance to test your knowledge with a fifth-grader, I warn you, they are definitely smarter than you might remember.

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STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 p - NYR 82 53 22 7 248 187 113
2 y - MTL 82 50 22 10 214 184 110
3 x - TBL 82 50 24 8 259 206 108
4 x - WSH 82 45 26 11 237 199 101
5 x - NYI 82 47 28 7 245 224 101
6 x - DET 82 43 25 14 231 211 100
7 x - OTT 82 43 26 13 232 208 99
8 x - PIT 82 43 27 12 217 204 98
9 BOS 82 41 27 14 209 201 96
10 FLA 82 38 29 15 198 213 91
11 CBJ 82 42 35 5 227 248 89
12 PHI 82 33 31 18 212 223 84
13 NJD 82 32 36 14 176 209 78
14 CAR 82 30 41 11 183 219 71
15 TOR 82 30 44 8 206 257 68
16 BUF 82 23 51 8 153 269 54

STATS

2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
E. Staal 77 23 31 -13 54
J. Faulk 82 15 34 -19 49
E. Lindholm 81 17 22 -23 39
V. Rask 80 11 22 -14 33
J. Skinner 77 18 13 -24 31
N. Gerbe 78 10 18 -14 28
R. Nash 68 8 17 -10 25
J. Staal 46 6 18 -6 24
J. Liles 57 2 20 -9 22
J. McClement 82 7 14 -7 21
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
C. Ward 22 24 5 .910 2.40
A. Khudobin 8 17 6 .900 2.72