Super-Secret Detective No. 1 and Super-Secret Detective No. 2 – aka Ossining Superintendent Dr. Raymond Sanchez and Director of Elementary Teaching and Learning Carrieann Sipos – took Brookside School by storm on December 6.
Wearing Sherlock Holmes-style deerstalker hats and wielding oversized magnifying glasses, they arrived at the school searching assistance from first graders who recently earned their reading badges by completing the Word Detectives unit of the Teachers College Reading and Writing Project curriculum. Sanchez and Sipos asked the eager junior detectives to help decipher a letter from Brookside Principal Dr. Ann Dealy.
As Super-Secret Detective No. 1 struggled to read tricky words like “Brookside” and “badges,” the children shouted out word-solving strategies they had learned, such as breaking long words into smaller parts and checking whether the words made sense, sounded right and looked right. Dealy’s letter asked the superintendent and Sipos to visit the school and celebrate students’ achievements.
After the presentation, each student chose a free book to take home and received a finger light, a small attachable flashlight, to help with their word detecting.
First-grader Amy Guallpa exclaimed, “Yay, we’re picking books out,” when she saw the tables piled high with books. “I love reading because you get to learn something new and you get to read fun stories.”
Madison Cleveland, her classmate, who is “super-excited” about reading, said, “I love reading and books inspire me because there’s so much stuff that I learn.”