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WCTV Community Classroom: Maggie Denning, Riley Elementary School

Published: Apr. 27, 2021 at 2:38 PM EDT
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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) - This month’s Community Classroom segment is with a Tallahassee teacher who wants to boost her students’ confidence, improve their vocabulary and expand their imagination — all through books.

Maggie Denning turned to Donors Choose for help. Donors Choose is a partner with WCTV, and the website allows educators to ask for donations to help with classroom needs.

Denning has always loved to read. She tries to pour that love into her fifth-grade students.

“We read together in the cafeteria. We read together at recess. They take their books... They’re so cute, you’ll see them walking down the hallway with their books,” she said.

The problem is, there aren’t enough books in the classroom or in many cases, in students’ homes, Denning said.

“When I first found out, it absolutely broke my heart because I know how important it is literacy in the home and how it correlates so highly with not just reading, but with their math scores and their science scores and just knowledge in general,” she said.

The second-year Riley Elementary School teacher has gotten assistance by using Donors Choose before.

Denning said, “You’d think it was like Christmas morning when they see the books that come in. They’re so happy. So the platform really gives schools like Riley and my classroom the ability to have resources and books that these kids love and they really need.”

Denning hopes to get more new books to open up that excitement and more. “It’s going to impact them right now, but it’s also going to impact them for years to come as well. They’re not just books to these kids. It’s their future.” She said.

Denning says there was such a need for books for students that she bought some herself and gave them for fifth-grade graduation. She says she wants students to be prepared for middle school.

If you’d like to help Denning’s classroom, visit this link.

We highlight a teacher from our region during the “Community Classroom” segment every third Wednesday of the month. The segment airs during the 6 a.m. hour of the Good Morning Show, as well as on Eyewitness News at 5:30 p.m.

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