Comic Book Club Helps With Reading Skills at Carver Middle

Evil villains lurk around every corner, wreaking havoc on innocent citizens.  But, look!  There's a hero on the way, dashing through the city with superpowers to save us!

What could be more exciting to middle schoolers that the classic superhero story line?  Comic books, with their engaging plots, exciting action, brilliant art and suspenseful cliffhangers provide the motivation that students in the Communities In Schools Comic Book Club need to improve their reading skills.

"The kids think it is just for fun, but we have a very serious purpose,"  said CIS Site Coordinator Amy Hunnewell, who organized the group.  "Students need to be good readers in order to succeed in other subjects, so giving them an exciting way to build reading skills is very important."

Students gathered once a week to share their interest in certain characters, to talk about the plots and settings, to see how the characters would grow and change and to experience the excitement of the conflicts in each story.  They also tried their hands at drawing their own scenes and writing their own dialogue. 

"It's fun!" said one 7th grader.  "I love comic books and I think it is great to be able to come to the Comic Book Club and meet friends who like it, too."


What Works: Stanford Social Innovation Review Features Communities In Schools

We are pleased to share this powerful article from today’s Stanford Social Innovation Review (SSIR) profiling Communities In Schools in the “What Works” column: http://www.ssireview.org/articles/entry/keeping_kids_in_school

The SSIR is one of the most influential publications in the social service sector.

The article provides a concise and thorough overview of how CIS works to coordinate community resources to help students overcome their personal barriers so they can graduate on time and be prepared for success in life. 


Enduring Lesson

Last month, CIS presented Chris Sandy, author of Enduring Regret, a memoir chronicling a fatal crash resulting from his choice to drink and drive and the lasting consequences of the incident, including the death of two people and eight years he spent in the state penitentiary.   Students at Walnut Grove High School were riveted by his testimony and were challenged to compete in an essay contest expressing the lessons they learned from his story.

Lindsey White was awarded a scholarship of $250 for her entry, which offered her reflection on the tragedy and how she hoped all students would learn from the mistake Chris Sandy made.  
Lindsey White, winner of the Chris Sandy Inspired Scholarship
with CIS Site Coordinator Milisa Wise