Fairview Elementary cuts ribbon on book vending machine

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Fairview Elementary students pose with the books they selected from the new vending machine. (Sara Gladney for The Cullman Tribune)

FAIRVIEW, Ala. – Fairview Elementary School on Tuesday cut the ribbon on its new book vending machine. Faculty and staff were joined by the top first-fifth-grade AR point earners, and fourth grader Kade Kugler, the top earner with 108.6 AR points, was given the honor of cutting the ribbon. 

Librarian Kristy Smith Harris joined FES this year and wanted to encourage excitement around reading.  With permission from principal Marty Hardman and bookkeeper Lindsey Gardner, she was allowed to use library funds to purchase the machine from Global Vending Group.  

“Our goal for this machine is to help promote the love of reading in all of our K-5 students. We love reading at Fairview Elementary. This is going to allow us to create more excitement with all of our students around reading. I’m beyond excited to be able to share this special day and this new book vending machine at our school so we can begin to use it,” said Harris.  

Cullman Electric Cooperative and the Cullman Power Board, through Operation Round Up, provided the funds for the books in the machine this month.   

“Books have a lot of competition these days,” Harris told the kids. “You have Xboxes and all kinds of gaming things. This is going to enrich your reading skills to put a book in your hand instead of that game.” 

Kindergarten students earn tokens for the machine by completing sight-reading challenges. First-fifth-grade students must receive a set number of AR points – 15 for first grade, 20 for second grade, 25 for third grade, 40 for fourth grade and 50 for fifth grade – to receive a token. 

After a student selects a book, it is his or hers to keep. The machine will be restocked through community donations, books fairs and grants.  

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