This morning we had the pleasure of hosting the Salem High boys basketball team at the Carlton School. Their visit was one event in a week-long celebration of reading and literacy. Each player read to a class and participated in a question and answer session. The high school hoopsters were quick to remind the elementary students how academics come before sports and the importance of getting good grades. They also spoke about the importance of hard work and teamwork.
After reading to the classes, the team shot hoops in the gym. Then each child was invited up to shoot a basket. This tradition started ten years ago when Mrs. Kim Erps, a now retired teacher from Carlton, came up with the idea with her brother, Mr. Tom Doyle, who is the team's coach as well as a physical education teacher at the high school. This tradition gives the younger students role models within the community and gives the team an opportunity to share lessons they've learned throughout their schooling with the elementary kids. It was inspiring to hear the players postive messages to the students and to see how well and how easily they interacted with them.