WBU Students Support Love of Reading Program at PISD

PLAINVIEW, Texas – Nick Quintero is accustomed to reading defenses. On Wednesday, however, the Wayland Baptist University quarterback was reading something completely different against an unfamiliar opponent. Quintero joined a group of 16 Wayland students who participated in the Plainview ISD’s Love of Reading program and read to the students at Highland Elementary.

Facilitated by PISD’s Family Engagement Specialist Clarissa Huron, the program is designed to help families and community members engage with the local schools.

While Quintero’s part took about as long as running a two-minute offense, he said it was a little unnerving.

“Those little kids are more intimidating than linebackers in my opinion,” Quintero said. “They have a lot more opinions … All of their opinions matter to me more than the linebackers.”

Quintero is majoring in social studies for grades 7-12, and with his football playing days officially behind him, he decided to tackle his career aspirations by volunteering for the Love of Reading program.

“I have a lot of free time since I’m done with football,” he said. “I might as well spend my time with my next career and develop those skills.”

Dr. Sarah Hartman, dean of the Don Williams School of Education at Wayland, said reading to the elementary school students is a great opportunity for WBU students to get some hands-on experience.

“In some of my classes, I have my students practice reading to each other because it’s a little bit intimidating when they think about reading out loud,” Hartman said. “Having them experience reading to students before they get into their own classroom is a great opportunity.”

Huron provided children’s books based on Valentine themes.

“We have books that express kindness, love and friendship between students,” she said.

Wayland students read books in 17 classrooms with 17-20 students in each room.

Huron thanked the Wayland students for participating. She said this is the second Love of Reading event and if anyone in the community is interested in volunteering, she will be planning events at the other elementary schools in Plainview throughout the month of February.