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NCSS announces 2019 Literacy Days winners
Anthony Miller
Anthony Miller, fifth grade student at Heard-Mixon Elementary Schools, recites the poem “If” by Rudyard Kipling. Miller was the fifth grade champion in the Newton County School System’s 2019 Literacy Days Poetry Recitation Competition. - photo by Submitted Photo

COVINGTON, Ga. — The Newton County School System is pleased to announce the winners of the 2019 District Literacy Days Recitation, Drama, Read Aloud and Ready Writing competitions.

Recitation competition
NCSS elementary and middle schools held poetry competitions at their school and sent their grade level winners to participate in the district’s recitation contest. Competitors were judged on a number of criteria in the poetry recitation contest, including stage presence, articulation, interpretation, memory and accuracy and difficulty of the piece.

The Recitation competition winners were:

Kindergarten: Jaxson Ford, South Salem Elementary,  "I Tried to Do My Homework"

First grade: Landon Mendoza, Theme School,  "If I Were in Charge of the World"

Second grade: Allie marks, East Newton Elementary, "Bored"

Third grade: Kayden O'Cain, Heard-Mixon Elementary, "Sick"

Fourth grade: Lorene Velasquez, West Newton Elementary, "Sick"

Fifth grade: Anthony Miller, Heard-Mixon Elementary, "If"

Sixth grade: Megan McEhaney, Theme School, "A Miracle to Behold"

Seventh grade: Naya Hatchett, Veterans Memorial Middle, "Escape"

Eighth grade: Amaya Williams, Theme School, "Why Am I Not Good Enough"

Ready Writing competition

In the Ready Writing competition, school-level champions were given a writing prompt and one hour to complete their essays. Students are scored on a rubric of six traits: ideas and content; organization; voice; word choice; sentence fluency; and conventions.

The Ready Writing competition winners were:

Third grade: Ashlynn Harwood, Mansfield Elementary, "If I Could Travel Back in Time"

Fourth grade: Garrett Brooks, Mansfield Elementary, "Childhood Poverty"

Fifth grade: Gavin Bell, Oak Hill Elementary, "What is Your Most Memorable Day?"

Sixth grade: Blythe Edgar, Theme School, "Less Time in Front of the TV"

Seventh grade: Annalie Parker, Theme School, "New Class"

Eighth grade: Lila Whitmire, Indian Creek Middle, "Space Exploration"

Read Aloud competition

Students in kindergarten through second grade participated in the Read Aloud of Best Piece Contest in which students, with the teacher’s assistance, choose a piece from the student’s collected writings to read aloud to the judges. They were scored on topic, words, order, sentences and articulation.

The Read Aloud competition winners were:

Kindergarten: Harris Hawver, Mansfield Elementary, "My Daddy"

First grade: Aubree Parish, Livingston Elementary, "If I Had Three Wishes"

Second grade: Journey Johnson, Oak Hill Elementary, "If I Could Change the World, What Would You Do and Why?"

Drama competition

The Middle Ridge Elementary School drama team won first place in the K-2 drama competition with their performance of “The Little Old Lady Who Wasn’t Afraid of Anything.” Team members included: Kaylie Barnes, Kenna’De Benton, Jacob Beasley, Jada Beasley, Jamir Boyd, Sofia Hernandez, Karley Lackey, Kyra Liverpool, Skylin McClendon, Ayden Sailsman and Paige Wheeler. 

Live Oak Elementary School’s drama team took first place in the grade 3-5 drama competition with their play, “The Whiz with a Twist.” Team members included: Briona Dennis, Peyton Eleazer, Jack Hart, Samuel Holder, Hannah Humphries, Dominic Montfort, Simone Pierre, Natalie Thomas and Camar West.

At the middle school level, Clements Middle School earned the first place trophy for their presentation, “Lost Voices.” Team members included: Jehden Robinson and Saniya Hogan.

Winners in all categories will now represent Newton County School System at the regional competition at Griffin RESA in February. 

“The Literacy Days Competition provides students with the opportunity to perform and be recognized for their talents through the celebration of the arts,” NCSS Superintendent Samantha Fuhrey said. “I am proud of each and every one of our participants as it takes a tremendous amount of talent and commitment to participate in this type of competition. They represented their schools very well.”

Fuhrey added, “In addition to our poetry recitation, read aloud, and drama team winners, our district ready writing winners are also very talented. I know Newton County School System will be well represented at the Griffin RESA Regional Literacy Days Festival.”