Volleyball Celebrates Read Across America Day at Hampton Academy

HAMPTON, N.H. -- Hampton Academy celebrates Read Across America annually and invites University of New Hampshire student-athletes to stop by the school to read with the kids. This year, juniors Taylor Dunklau (Mukwonago, Wis.), Kym Gordon (Canandaigua, N.Y.) and sophomore Madison Lightfoot (Clarkston, Mich.) of the volleyball team read aloud "The Butter Battle Book" by Dr. Seuss to a group of sixth-grade students. The event also coincides with Dr. Suess’ birthday.

The Dr. Seuss book focuses on two made up cultures, the Zooks and the Yooks, who bicker over which side of the toast to butter. The feud develops into a competition and all-out battle. 

Dunklau, Gordon and Lightfoot discussed the experience with SeacoastOnline.com. "It's really important to talk with one another about problems," Lightfoot told. "If you don't talk about something right away, it can escalate."

"You need to talk with your friends about quarrels," said Gordon. "If both sides go to their friends instead, their friends just give them more ammunition, which makes matters worse. If they had just talked about it with each other first, maybe you could have worked it out."

After the volleyball players finished the reading, they engaged the class with questions about how the book made them feel.

"I think the best part was being able to make that connection," said Lightfoot. "It's a silly book, but it focuses on issues that are prominent for kids their age."

"It's an important lesson that too many people don't learn early enough in life," said Dunklau.

Read Across America is a nationwide event in its 17th year. Sponsored by the National Education Association, it is a reading awareness and motivation event designed to encourage students' love of books. For information, visit www.nea.org/grants/886.htm.

Volleyball is back in spring exhibition action Saturday, April 12 at the University of Rhode Island Invitational. Be sure to visit UNHWildcats.com for up-to-date information on the UNH volleyball team. For additional information on UNH volleyball, like the 'Cats on Facebook or follow the squad on Twitter and Instagram at @UNHVOLLEYBALL. For more information about UNH athletics and Wildcats in the Community, look for the Wildcats in the Community page presented by Kennebunk Savings.

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