To commemorate March is Reading Month, Northwood University’s Leadership team collaborated with their Student United Way chapter to read to students at Siebert Elementary last week. 14 Northwood University volunteers were paired to read with 14 second grade students who need additional assistance with their reading proficiency at grade level. Additionally, a free box lunch was provided and each child received a literacy kit that included two books, a reading workbook, writing journal and personal dry erase board.

“This has just been a great opportunity for our students to get together with adults who are interested in helping them read and learn the 1,000 most common words,” explained Siebert Elementary Principal Paul Schroll. “We typically start with some fun games, then we start reading and get to work on learning those 1,000 words.”

Northwood University also donated three e-readers that were given to students selected by Principal Schroll, who selected the students based on merit and outstanding performance in the program.

“Northwood University values our partnership with United Way of Midland County to sponsor the Story Adventurers Summer Reading Program. We’ve been thrilled to watch the students continue to cultivate their skills and love for reading as the school year progresses,” shared Dr. Kristin Stehouwer, Executive Vice President/Chief Operating Officer/Chief Academic Officer at Northwood University. “Being a good reader is life-changing and we are pleased the students will be able to use their new e-readers at home to continue their learning adventures daily.”

Story Adventurers originally launched as a summer reading program for Siebert Elementary students at the Joseph’s Run apartment complex in June of 2018. Story Adventurers was initially designed to decrease the risk of “Summer Slide,” the learning loss that can occur when students do not engage in educational activities during the summer months. Due to the success of the summer reading program, Story Adventurers was extended through the school year to continue to track the students’ progress.

Volunteer opportunities are available for Story Adventurers. To get involved, contact Rebecca Rekeweg at or 989.631.3670.