Beale Airmen 'Read Across America'

  • Published
  • By Tech. Sgt. Luke Johnson
  • 9th Reconnaissance Wing Public Affairs
Airmen from the 9th Communications Squadron here joined in the nation's largest reading celebration March 2, at Arobga Elementary School, here.

The Airmen interacted with schoolchildren as they read their favorite books during the National Education Association's Read across America week.

The reading celebration takes place each year on or around March 2, the birthday of children's author Dr. Seuss.

"They're all so eager to read, not just to be read to, but to read themselves," said Staff Sgt. Rebecca Brown, the 9th CS NCOIC of network administration. "I kind of remember when I was in third grade, and I was in a reading group of my little peers, and we took the time during the day to sit and read with each other or by ourselves. You kind of forget how much fun reading was back then."

The children are excited to have an Airman in uniform read to them and explain what they do in the Air Force, said Eric Preston, the school's principal.

"The kids really look up to the Airmen," Mr. Preston said. "When they see somebody who comes in from the outside and is interested in them; it really benefits them. It also allows the teachers to talk to the kids and tell them that if you finish school you can go out and do this kind of thing."

Airman 1st Class Ronald Press, from 9th CS transmission systems, said the moment he walked into the classroom, all of the children jumped up with excitement.

"We have been here once before, and the kids remember us," Airman Press said. "I definitely have a group of kids who have kind of claimed me because every time we go to read books, they pick partners to read books and they're always pulling me every which way. I have to give each one an equal opportunity."

Visiting the school definitely had a positive impact on the children, Airman Press said.

"They are all trying to get a piece of your attention," Airman Press said. "They say, 'I want to sit next to the military guy, I want him to read,' and it's really fun and a great experience."