The Student Leadership Team at Chemeketa Community College in Salem Oregon attepmts to plan this wonderful event yearly (depends on our budget/cuts). Project Page Turner has been going on and off for about 10 years now, and every year it gets more and more exciting to organize. We invite 150-200 elementary school children to enjoy an afternoon of reading, and entertaiment over milk and cookies.
We try to get as many books as possible donated to our project so that each child will be able to take a book (or two) home witht them. We also recruit volunteers from different organizations to help us out in this event. Our volunteers range anywhere from, student and staff from the college, to military personell to senior center individuals. We use our volunteers mainly to read to a group of children, but we also ask some of them to help with the milk and cookies distribution, goody bags distribution, and set up/clean up.
For the first part of the event each child gets to choose a book of their choice to read. Then each volunteer takes about 3 children to read to them for about 30 minutes. Volunteers or children can read to each other. During the reading period milk and cookies are distributed by the volunteers.
After about 30-45 minutes of reading, we announce that it's time for their "surprise" of the day, and we (usually) bring out a magician to entertain the chilren. Last year we had a magician (William Scott Anderson) who tied his magic in with education. It was great and the children loved him. We also got the President of Chemeketa Community College to participate in this event, and it brought many people to see our project. The magician performs for about 30 minutes and the children and their teachers are then headed back home.
When the children begin to leave volunteers exit them out with a goody bag (which usually contains color books, pencils, balloons, stickers, candy, etc.), and a balloon to take with them.
The children are left ecstatic about the event, and we hope that we instilled how important reading actually is. At the end many volunteers, parents, and teachers come up to say that they are really happy about the event, and want us to inform them of the date of the next project!
So this is basically how the event runs... I absolutely have a passion for children and explaining to them that education is important. I hope that Chemeketa continues to do this project year after year.