Students from Martin Luther King Jr. Elementary School are characters in books produced by the Living Storybook project. (Courtesy of Do the Write Thing)
Students from Martin Luther King Jr. Elementary School are characters in books produced by the Living Storybook project. (Courtesy of Do the Write Thing)

Roughly 60 students attending Martin Luther King Jr. Elementary School in Southeast are now characters in four books produced through the Living Storybook project, a nonprofit special literacy program developed by Do the Write Thing program.

Overall, the project aims to motivates young children to read by producing books in which children appear as characters.

The books include:

• “I Know My Community Workers,” which features pre-K students dressed as 17 community workers, including a doctor, nurse, military veteran, judge, firefighter and police officer. Information is provided on the duties of these helpers and where they work.

• “Rashad and the Gold Medallion,” featuring kindergarten students pictured in costumes representing community workers learning the value of sharing.

Memorial Day Holiday

D.C. public schools will be closed May 29 in recognition of Memorial Day.

Reaping the Benefits of LEAP

“With the Learning Together to Advance Our Practice (LEAP) program, we get to collaborate with each other on a weekly basis and we look forward to it. If we have questions we want to talk to our colleagues about, or [discuss] the concepts our children are having a hard time understanding, you can get the perspective of people who are fighting the same battle. It’s good to have the perspective of what it is going to look like later on. I can see how important it is for my students to understand what ’10’ is and how it can be broken down and looking at the relationship of numbers, so that later on, it’s building the foundation for place value.” – Nathalie Dautruche, kindergarten reacher at Garfield Inquiry-Based Preparatory Academy

‘We the Girls’ Event

As a part of the “Reign: Empowering Young Women as Leaders” project, DCPS will host its first annual “We the Girls, Young Women’s Leadership Conference and Pep Rally” on Saturday, June 3 at Armour J. Blackburn Center at Howard University.

The conference will be a day of celebration, enrichment and inspiration for young women of color in grades 5-12. Topics that will be addressed at the event include identity, stress management, healthy relationships, community advocacy, self-care, leadership, entrepreneurship, STEM and applying to college.

The celebration will also offer a limited number of workshops for DCPS educators.

Check-in and breakfast: 9 a.m. – 10 a.m.
Welcome and keynote address: 10 a.m. – 10:30 a.m.
Workshops and lunch: 10:30 a.m. – 2:30 p.m.
Pep rally: 2:30 p.m. – 3:30 p.m.

Registration is required. For more information, contact

Essay Contest Winners Announced

The winners in the 29th “Celebration of Youth” essay contest, in which participating students submitted essays about personal experiences from their own life, were recently announced.

Winners in grades 4 to 6

First Place: Grace Thornton, Second Place: Antoinette Jean-Baptiste, Third Place: Amar Johnson,  Fourth Place: Winta Brhane, Fifth Place: Nathaniel Wiegmann, Sixth Place: Zaynab Ewing-Boyd,  Seventh Place: Anna Potter

Winners in grades 7 to 9

First Place: Johanna Acosta-Gonzalez,  Second Place: Mirielle Skolnick, Third Place: Alethea Bennett, Fourth Place: Ayanna McClellan,  Fifth Place: Jade Gregoire,  Sixth Place: Taniya Gaddis, Seventh Place: Nathan Minor

Honorable Mentions:

Ahmed Ahmed, Erlina Berisha,  Alexandria Anaya Brown,  Daniella Ciccione, Destanie Colema, Devon Creque, Hazel Cross, Fatima Diallo, Tessa Furlow, Drew Heaven, Linnea Leijon, Felipe Lemus,  Imani Nesbeth, Rose Ngatchou,  Amaia Noursi,  Kamiyah Olumba,  Xavier Robertson  Camelia Terraza,  Mariela Tirado, Torrenz Ward and Alexandra Webber.

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