story & photo
by Amy Pjura
As Dr. Suess’ Cat In The Hat and the Read Across America Team toured across the United States to give the gift of reading to school children, many local schools participated in their own reading events. I was invited to join the children of the 5th grade class from St. Micheal’s School, Mystic to read to their pen pals at Pendleton Health and Rehabilitation Center, Mystic.
For the Read Across America event, students brought their favorite book to share with their pen pals. They also enjoyed a short book discussion and social time. Shirley Scoken, resident, Pendleton, says that she, “really appreciates the time spent with her pen pal” Victoria.
Concetta Franchetti BS, TRS, Recreation Supervisor, Pendleton is the Pen Pal Program Leader and started the program in 1998 with the St. Patrick’s Cathedral School, Norwich. After 8 years, the students involved in the programmed graduated and Concetta chose St. Michael’s for the new Pen Pal Program. The residents of Pendleton and the students get together two to three times a year for the Christmas holiday, Read Across America and during the National Nursing Home Week in May. Students also visit their pen pals on their own time with their families and stay connected through letters. Concetta is excited that the program has been very successful.