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West Rowan High students host literary parade

On June 4, Wendy Fontenot’s Advanced Placement English III held a parade in the courtyard at West Rowan High School. Fontenot created the project as an “authentic assessment” — a way for us to experience what a project in college and even beyond may be like.
After taking the Advanced Placement exam in the beginning of May, the class wanted nothing more than to relax for the rest of the school year and gently slide into summer; however, a final exam grade was required, and Fontenot was on a mission to make it as engaging as possible.
The class was given several choices, including writing journal entries and making a character suitcase, but the parade project won out.
Throughout the semester, the class read short stories and articles, which became the inspiration for each of the floats. Their assignment was to pick one of their favorite assignments from the semester and design a float on a wagon representing the setting, conflict, major rhetorical devices and other aspects of the story.
In addition, students were required to dress in character.
Fontenot enlisted the help of several marching band members, yearbook and business students and the media center. Her goal for the parade was to “promote literacy and inspire students to read over the summer.”
The parade began with a sign that said, “Reading is the best vacation!” and advertised the Rowan-Salisbury School System’s website for summer reading: www.rssreads.com.
It was followed by the grand marshal — Kelly Feimster, the district’s media and AIG director.
Blocks spelling out “R-E-A-D” came next, and students handed out bookmarks to those in attendance. Drum line members were nearby as well, tapping out the rhythm of a cadence on their drums.
Fontenot’s class and their floats, along with several clowns, followed the drum line. Each float transported viewers to the location of the piece it represented.
The class performed for students from classes all over the school, as well as the lunch crowd.
Savannah Morgan is a student at West Rowan High School.

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