See how our first ever sponsored school uses books to encourage discovery and build understanding.
Books have the power to shape and profoundly impact the lives of even our youngest readers. We launched our Classroom Sponsorship Program earlier this year and are excited to the share the story of our first ever sponsored school with you.
Learn about our classroom sponsorship program and how this school was selected by reading our announcement post: Become BookPal’s First-Ever Sponsored Classroom!
Meet Faith Baptist Schools
A fully accredited Western Association of Schools and Colleges institution, Faith Baptist Schools is a private college preparatory school (preschool through high school) that serves over 1,200 students in northern Los Angeles. As a private Christian school, the School’s primary mission is to “lead students to a personal relationship with our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, and to prepare college-bound students through an arduous program of academic excellence by Christ-centered teaching, application, and example.”
“Faith Baptist students have shown excitement and interest in reading books that are valuable in knowledge, truth, and Christian values,” shared Patti Brock, Faith Baptist’s assistant librarian. “However, it doesn’t stop there! Students continue to grow as they read about life and explore the world through the many books available to them.”
The school runs a variety of programs that promote literacy development, including nightly reading assignments and a school-wide reading competition. The faculty and staff of Faith Baptist know firsthand how books can change a student’s life. “There was one student who came to the library on a regular basis through 3rd and 4th grade to get tutoring, and she really had a difficult time with reading comprehension. In fact, she hated reading and struggled to focus on any passage long enough to get anything out of it,” recounted Tricia Sturm, Faith Baptist’s former librarian. “After her 5th-grade class read Johnny Tremain, she actually came looking for similar books to read. Finding a story that truly caught her attention completely changed her outlook on reading.”
The school-wide reading competition also spurred big changes in literacy abilities and habits. “One year, a kindergarten student took her reading grade from a ‘C’ to an ‘A’ in three weeks because of all the extra practice she was getting from the books she was reading,” recalled Sturm. “Another year, a 3rd-grade teacher confessed that his classroom bookshelf, which had been pristine the first half of the year, was consistently a mess from students using the books, nearly a month after the contest was over.” As Faith Baptist has seen in their school, when students consistently read quality material their enjoyment of reading, their appetite for reading, and their comprehension of reading improves dramatically.
Not only do books help improve literacy skills, but they also encourage imagination. “Reading builds creativity, allows for the discovery of new interests, and increases empathy,” Sturm explained. “Reading activates the imagination and enables children to travel through time or around the world in ways that aren’t possible with any other media.”
Thank you for sharing your story with us, Cindy & Pastor Tim! We love seeing how your BookPal Classroom Sponsorship Program books are being used in your school.