One little piggy is leaving her pen this week to visit with some students at Chattanooga Girls Leadership Academy. The pot-bellied pig named Lola will be at CGLA, 1802 Bailey Ave. on Thursday at 2 p.m. as part of a unique reading event for some of the school's literary classes. Literacy is a major academic focus of Tennessee's first public charter school which touts itself as being a "reading school."
A few select reading classes are reading Charlotte's Web as their first novel of the year and Lola will be used to help the students exercise their habits of reading: preview, connect, question, predict, visualize, clarify, and evaluate.
"We are mainly making connections by meeting one of the characters in the book," said teacher Chassey Foster. "I grew up around farm animals and could easily connect with the piglet Fern. A lot of these girls have never been around live farm animals."
The hands-on activity is designed to engage students in more than the habits of reading. "I want young adults to realize the importance of reading for the academic sense and beyond," said Ms. Foster. "Stories are something that stay with you for your entire life. Charlotte's Web teaches you about friendship and determination ... life lessons that are important at any age. Reading allows you to discover so much more than words; books teach you lessons, introduce you to new people, and take you on adventures."
Lola will be brought in by Sandy Bagby who owns a small farm in Tiftonia.