Lounsberry Hollow kids get ‘Punished'

| 22 Feb 2012 | 08:11

Wordplay is the order of the day, as students hone their punning skills VERNON n When 12 students at Lounsberry Hollow Middle School were informed that they were going to get “Punished,” they were very relieved to receive a book by that same name. “Punished,” written by David Lubar, is a witty novel that incorporates puns and wordplay into the story line. A copy of the book was presented to each of the top 12 fifth-graders in the schoolwide Accelerated Reader program. For their yearlong reading achievement, the students were invited to read the novel and prepare for a “Battle of the Book” challenge. The story is about a young boy, Logan, who uncontrollably spouts puns. In Logan’s quest to break the magic spell, he must find oxymorons, anagrams and palindromes. The Battle of the Book project was sponsored by the Vernon Township Board of Education’s Mind Travelers Fund, with a focus on supporting school libraries and promoting the joy of reading. The idea of the battle was first proposed by board vice president Cynthia Auberger. LHMS library media specialist Vicky Turner challenged the fifth-grade students to “ready for battle” and designed a Jeopardy-style game format to test the students’ recall and comprehension of the story. Several parents and school board members, as well as central office and building administrators, joined in the fun, reading the book prior to the battle. On battle day, the dozen students greeted their adult guests as they filled the library. With the voice of Alex Trebek, famous host of TV’s “Jeopardy” show, echoing through the media center, the Vernon Jeopardy game board was projected onto a large screen. Fifth-grade language arts teachers Clara Carlson, Cheri Stefkovich and Rita Sorensen, and library aide Maureen Blandino, facilitated game play as Turner led students and adults in the audience through two rounds of the game, culminating in a Final Jeopardy wager. At the conclusion of the battle, board president Howard Whidden and vice president Auberger presented each student with a framed certificate and ribbon. The celebration was one of many festivities planned to commemorate Love of Reading Week at Lounsberry Hollow Middle School.