Helen Ruffin Reading Bowl

The Helen Ruffin Reading Bowl is an active activity of the GLMA and has been since the beginning of the Georgia Helen Ruffin Reading Bowl in 2004. The Helen Ruffin Reading Bowl is a subcommittee of the Special Projects Area of GLMA according to the GLMA Policies and Procedures Handbook. The Steering Committee is made up of GLMA members of which several are current District Chairs in GLMA.


Helen Ruffin Reading Bowl is a project that gives a face to GLMA that the teachers, administrators and parents of Georgia use to define the good that GLMA does for the students of our state. Library media has long fought a battle against an antiquated image. The HRRB is a local activity as well as a state-wide activity that helps people see library media as involved in curriculum and the support of reading among our students.


How the HRRB has changed the image of library media in local schools and how it is benefiting student achievement?  


We would like to reference your comments in our comments to the GLMA Board in the October meeting and in our presentation at AASL in Charleston.


Donna Milner


Posted on September 14, 2009, in Best practice, Communications. Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. I have sponsored Reading Bowls for four years and it was worth every year! I have to say Anne Wallace, Dorrie Moll, and Wanda Dunn really got the Reading Bowl running in Henry County in the last few years and it was wonderful! It gave a “book” program to the media center that promoted leisure reading with good books – and the kids enjoyed competition.

    I am in Clayton County now where, under Dr. Leslie Pratschler’s guidance, it has taken off to even better heights! Our Clayton County Reading Bowl was super! Students represented many schools and competed.

    Although my school didn’t win, my students enjoy the weekly one hour meetings, where we discuss plot, characters, and genres of all the reading bowl books. I feel like I have bonded more with my students who participate, both as a teacher and a librarian. I see how much reading is important to them and with competition, they gain confidence in themselves. My fifth graders this year say we are going to win the Reading Bowl because they “got their feet wet” as fourth graders last year. I hope so – but the booktalks we give to one another and the questions we generate for competition practice shows that at my school, the reading bowl is a fun reading program that gets us “TALKING BOOKS again!”

  2. I work in a high school where almost every teacher is involved in coaching a sport, activity, club, or academic team. I am the coach of our competition reading team which is considered an “academic sport.” Coaching a reading team not only helps my students but it also gives me “Coach” status in an environment where the term “Coach” nets me more collegial/professional esteem than the Dr. I for earned with my Ph.D.

    My team benefits academically and personally by reading excellent quality young adult literature and by engaging in conversations with other students about books and reading. As students read they deepen content knowledge and broaden their vocabulary thus increasing student achievement. Promoting reading is one of the primary goals of our library media program and having a competition reading team is one way we promote reading. Additionally having a competition reading team benefits everyone. All students benefit from having the high quality books used in the competition in our library collection. In my experience the selections for the Georgia Peach Teen Reader’s Choice award are excellent books. By purchasing these books and personally reading them I help students and faculty make connections with books that they might not have read.

    The Helen Ruffin Reading Competition is the single most rewarding activity that I have engaged in with students in my media center. As a past president of GLMA I urge the current GLMA Board of Directors to fully support the Georgia Helen Ruffin Reading Bowl Competition.

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