From Teachers & School Administrators
"I am a first grader teacher in Maple Heights City Schools. When I was initially introduced to the PREP Program, it was less overwhelming than I had anticipated. Typically when piloting a program, there can be a lot of time, work, and preparation. Everything within this program was so well organized and easy to understand. As a teacher it gave me peace of mind knowing that I didn’t have to go overboard and do a ton of work! The students were extremely “hyped” about the Prep Program and were so excited to get to take home and KEEP books in their home library. Each Monday out display would bring smiles and shrieks of excitement. It also made Mondays a little less sleepy for students and more exciting! I got so many great responses from families who started bookshelves and areas of their home for their book collections. The books were delivered in a timely manner and always included a wide range of genres and levels. The reading logs and scratch off prizes were an added bonus that students celebrated each time they or their peers hit a reading milestone. The prizes we used in the classroom connected back to literacy including; reading in cozy spots (like my teacher chair), using flashlights or microphones, reading with stuffed animals, etc. This encouraged more excitement surrounding reading and literacy. This program was definitely a hit in my classroom among myself, students, and families! It got quality books in the hands of students, encouraged a positive attitude towards literacy, promoted student choice, and created connections between home and school learning!
-First Grade Teacher-Maple Heights City Schools
"I am a second grade teacher for Elyria City Schools. The PREP reading program helped my students establish a love for reading. Each week they received a new book to read at home or for someone to read to them. They absolutely loved coming into my classroom on Monday's to pick out their new book. Students also looked forward to putting up their own sticker each time they got their reading log signed and it also held them accountable. They also loved scratching off their reward and seeing what Reading Reward they got. (read with a finger flashlight, read with a witch or puppet finger, read to a teacher of your choice, read in the hallway with a friend, read with a pillow, read with a lantern, read to the class, etc.) Students were always asking me when we would be using our reading rewards because it got them so excited about getting to read! We have been talking about what our New Year's Resolution will be and about half of my class have said, "I want to get better at reading." I truly believe that PREP has helped my students become better readers by practicing every day. It has helped them become more confident with reading. Instead of saying, "I can't read." or "I'm bad at reading.", I see them attempting to sound out words and read aloud to me with no hesitation. My students love to read, thanks to PREP!"
- Second Grade Teacher-Elyria City Schools
"My kindergarten students loved the PREP program! I was able to see first hand how PREP motivated my students to develop a daily reading habit and become improved readers."
- Kindergarten Teacher -Berea City Schools
"My students really like the program, they especially like picking out their new books every Monday and will remind me if I forget. I definitely feel like PREP gets them to enjoy reading more and gets parents/guardians involved also. I am grateful to Dr. Votypka for her support with my students."
- Second Grade Teacher-North Ridgeville City Schools
"I think the PREP program is a great incentive to help encourage children to read nightly. They love coming in each morning and showing me their PREP folder and earning their stickers and their scratch-off cards. Their favorite incentives are the simple ones (reading in the hallway and reading with a friend). My class has enjoyed this program.
- First Grade Teacher-Maple Heights City Schools
"I know the importance of building intrinsic motivation and love for reading in young students. As I learn more about PREP, I cannot help but wonder how reading would be different for my older students if they had been exposed to PREP within their early elementary years. I truly believe it would have made a positive impact. If students develop the habit and love for reading at an early age they will continue to build stronger literacy skills and an excitement for learning in years to come.
- High School Intervention Specialist-Bay Village City Schools
"It is the highlight of my day when a student chooses "read to the principal" as their PREP reading reward."
- Elementary School Principal-Berea City Schools
"From our data, it is evident that students that were highly engaged in the PREP program were more likely to see gains in phonological awareness and phonics. Informal student conversations validated that data as well and students verbalized their excitement about earning incentives and having books to read at home."
- Local School District Curriculum Director
'"I used to hate reading but now I love it because of the rewards."
- First Grade Student-Berea City Schools
"We get to choose any book we want and we get to keep it forever."
- Kindergarten Student-Mansfield City Schools
"Ever since we started getting the free books, I read every night with my mom in the reading tent we made together."
- First Grade Student-Maple Heights City Schools
"I remind my parents to read with me so I get prizes."
- Second Grade Student-Elyria City Schools
"I really like the idea of sending home a book every week. I cannot believe how well my daughter is flying through these books, even from the first time she reads it to me during the week!"
- Parent of a kindergarten student-Berea City Schools
"Both of our sons were reading below grade level and struggling to learn and keep up in other areas because of being below grade level. Dr. Votypka’s innovative approach, rooted in positive reinforcement and rewards, not only accelerated their reading proficiency, but most importantly, it helped them grow to love something they once struggled so much with. Now in 6th and 4th grades, they are both such strong students and we attribute much of their success to Dr. Votypka’s PREP program."
- Parent of a sixth grader and fourth grader-Lakewood City Schools
"The incentives really keep my son reading nightly. First thing in the morning he asks me to sign his PREP folder. He is very proactive now about getting his nightly reading done. "
- Parent of a first grader-North Ridgeville City Schools
"My daughter seems pretty excited every night to read so I can sign her reading log. I also noticed she’s getting a lot more confident when she’s reading. She tries sounding out words without getting frustrated right away."
- Parent of a first grader-Berea City Schools