Roy Neal Shelling Elementary fights illiteracy with stuffed animals

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MONROE, La. (KNOE) - Roy Neal Shelling elementary workers are encouraging students to read to stuffed animals to fight illiteracy.

Roy Neal Shelling elementary workers are encouraging students to read to stuffed animals to fight illiteracy. Source: (KNOE)

According to the Child Literacy Foundation, 65% of America's fourth-graders don't read at the level they should.

Roy Neal Shelling Elementary Curriculum Director Melanie Hurd said the problem inspired her new project.

Kids in kindergarten, first and second grade were given a stuffed animal to take home with them. Their teachers encouraged them to read to their "pets" for 20 minutes every night.

Hurd said she hopes this program will help the students improve their literacy skills. She said she also hopes it will keep students excited to read around the house.

"I think the energy will go on to their older brothers and sisters and younger brothers and sisters, and we want to keep going with it," she said. "And we want to get more books to send home with them that they can keep. Because if they can start getting books at home to read I think their love of reading at home will increase."