LDE 5th Grader has over 6,600 K-5 AR Points!
As Alaina Clemens puts down a book, she picks up another one. She just can’t get enough of reading. Her passion for books started right after she turned 4 years old and it has grown stronger with each page. Alaina no longer needed her mother to read to her.
“And from then on, I had a difficult time getting her to do anything other than read,” Angela Clemens, her mother, said.
Her third grade teacher, Tammie Pruitt, recalled a time when her mother told her she has to do an hour of exercise before she could read. Of course, Alaina found a loophole.
“She walked for an hour [on the treadmill] while reading her book,” Mrs. Pruitt said. “She had the most miles and the most accelerated reading points. Great kid with so much potential.”
Alaina is very fond of fantasy books and would spend several hours reading them.
“I get to live all kinds of adventures through the books I read,” she said. “I love guessing about what the characters will do next, or thinking of ways they could do things differently or more efficiently."
Her mother admitted that even though Alaina comes from a long line of readers, there was something different about her.
“She has an untrained speed-reading ability that frankly amazes me,” Angela said. “When she found the time to read all of them during the school day, I have no idea.”
Alaina broke the kindergarten accelerated reading record and that was not enough. The fifth grader already has 1428.9 AR points this academic year and a total of 6,630 since kindergarten. To put her AR points in perspective, the student with the second-highest point has 1,150 points.
“I thought I loved books, but Alaina is way more passionate than I,” Cassandra Woods, her kindergarten teacher, said. “I am so proud of her and her example to others.”
Eventually, her teacher become amazed when they realized her gift for literature. Kendra Simpson, who taught her in the second grade, is not sure if she will ever have another student with Alaina’s talent.
“As her teacher, she wowed me with her genuine LOVE for reading,” Mrs. Simpson said. “She is truly one of a kind.”
There’s more to Alaina whenever she puts her books away. Bree Chadwick, her teacher for the past two years, noticed her witty side and how helpful she is to her classmates. She has also been learning new trades like computer programming.
“Alaina is destined to do great things in the future,” Mrs. Chadwick said. “It has been an honor to be her ELA teacher, not one year but two.”
Understandably, the Lake Dallas Elementary library was a magical place for Alaina. Librarian Beth Saralegui got to know her as a person and as a devoted reader. She became a frequent visitor because she read books so quickly.
“I was fearful I would run out of books for her to read,” Mrs. Saralegui said. “There will never be another Alaina. I am going to miss her so much when she moves on to middle school.”
Dr. Jennifer Perry, LDE Principal, enjoys talking with Alaina about her goals and the high expectations she sets every year.
“I’m going to miss our celebratory lunches together,” Dr. Perry said. “As she moves on to middle school, I will now be looking forward to seeing what accomplishments she will amaze us with next.”