Kelly Walsh High School

KW football players read to MH second-graders
11.19.2009

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By Jennifer Schultes

For the second year in a row, Manor Heights Elementary second-grade teacher Shireen Stafford invited Kelly Walsh High School Trojan Football Coach Jim Horne and his team to read with her students.

Stafford does a "mystery readers" program with her students, hyping up the importance of reading while giving them clues as to which local celebrities will come share some time with them.

Thursday's clues were:

1. Green is one of their favorite colors. 2. They always play by the rules. 3. Having good grades is a must to play. 4. Teamwork is needed to win!

Based on these clues, Stafford said her students were certain their mystery readers were the Green Bay Packers.

Instead, 10 Kelly Walsh High School football players walked in the room, followed by Horne. Each introduced themselves and then sat at different tables and either listened to second-graders read or read to them.

How does Stafford choose her mystery readers?

"[They] are outstanding members of our community that kids look up to, respect and see as everyday heroes," Stafford wrote. "I invite them to come to our class, read with the kids and talk about reading in their everyday life."

Her ultimate goal, she said, is to foster a love of learning with her students, and for them to see members of the community that they admire read.

"Coach Horne always goes out of his way to make my class feel special, and the guys take time out of their day to mentor our young readers!"

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Ten Kelly Walsh High School Trojan football players visited Shireen Stafford's second-grade class at Manor Heights Elementary School Thursday to share their love of reading. Those present were Malachi Bennett, DeLane Doyle, Adrian Jimenez, Harrison Johnson, Tom Manning, Lucas Nolan, Lance Peters, Marco Sanchez, Martin Vasquez and Tanner Vivian.