Turn the Page on 2021's Reading Rocks Summer Program

June 7, 2021

Education Foundation for Billings Public Schools media release | June 2, 2021

The Education Foundation for Billings Public Schools is closing the chapter on 2020's challenges and turning the page to this summer's Reading Rocks program with special guest storytellers beginning June 14, in conjunction with Billings School District 2's free lunch program in the city's parks. 

Reading Rocks 2021 kicks off June 14 at Orchard Elementary and Castle Rock Park at 12:15pm. This first encounter features special guest storytellers, Indian Education Director, Jennifer Smith (Orchard), and local author, Mike Thayer (Castle Rock). The program runs Mondays-Thursdays, 12:15-1pm through July 22. 

  • Mondays: Orchard Elementary & Castle Rock Park
  • Tuesdays & Thursdays: Central & Pioneer Parks
  • Wednesdays: Big Sky & Castle Rock Park

Reading Rocks is designed to help low-income students continue reading over the summer when reading levels are known to drop.  Students can enjoy guest story-tellers from around the community at the start of every session.  Students are then invited to read with adult and teen volunteers.  Finally, all participants are awarded with a book of their choice and a prize to take home. 

Open to students of all ages, no pre-registration is necessary. Providing critical reading support to students during the summer, Reading Rocks provides a fun, inviting, and convenient environment. 

Interested in volunteering for Reading Rocks? Contact Madison Gilsdorf at 406.281.5148 or gilsdorfm@billingsschools.org. 

The Education Foundation has lined up dynamic guest storytellers for an exciting summer at Reading Rocks. Come hear stories from the Billings Police Department Canine Unit, local authors, firefighters, and many more engaging guests! As an added bonus for these kiddos devoting time to summer reading, Altana Federal Credit Union Ice Cream Truck will be making surprise visits with free ice cream. 

Reading Rocks has been made possible this summer due to the generous support of the Billings Downtown Exchange Club, The Dennis and Phyllis Washington Foundation, Mary Alice Fortin Foundation, Town Pump Foundation, Friends of the Billings Public Library, WalMart Community Foundation, Believe in Reading, Nora Roberts Foundation, Billings Community Foundation, Billings Junior Women’s Club, Bibliophiles Book Club, and the Charles M. Bair Family Trust.  Reading Rocks is also supported by community and student volunteers who donate numerous hours throughout the summer.  

About the Education Foundation for Billings Public Schools:

The mission of the Education Foundation is to enhance educational opportunities in the Billings Public Schools.  The Foundation works in cooperation with the public school system, but operates independently.  Through endowments, scholarships, grants, and specific projects, the Foundation provides opportunities and resources for students and educators in Billings Public Schools to promote excellence in education.  Major activities include: Classroom Grants, Partners in Education, Reading Rocks, Saturday Live, and scholarships for students and teachers.

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