GREAT FALLS — The United Way of Cascade County is encouraging students to read more - and asking community members to get involved in those efforts.
As part of the state-wide Graduation Matters program, United Way has partnered with Great Falls Public Schools for the "Read 2 Me" project.
Around 840 books are being given out this week to second-grade students across the district.
Volunteers are are kicking off a reading challenge by spending time in classrooms reading to and with students.
Sylvia Teasley, a teacher at Loy Elementary School, says reading helps students get to their next step.
“In second grade they are still learning to read and it gets them ready for third grade. Because by the time they get to third grade then it switches over to read to learn."
Every student gets to take home a copy of the book that was read on Tuesday, and every time they read for 20 minutes, they get to mark it on a take-home reading sheet for a chance to win a prize.