READY RED: Jack Moller, Kira-Lee Halpin and Claudia Schafer dress up for Paint the Town REaD.
READY RED: Jack Moller, Kira-Lee Halpin and Claudia Schafer dress up for Paint the Town REaD. Derek Barry

Mitchell paints the town REaD

THERE was a giant blue insect on the loose in Mitchell on Friday, but it wasn't the scene of some B-Grade horror movie.

This particular blue bug was the Reading Bug on an important educational mission, a mission helped by dozens of kids wearing red.

Friday was Paint the Town REaD day in Mitchell and all the students of Mitchell State School and St Pat's dressed up for the day either in red, or as characters from Phil Kettle's "Too Cool" children's books.

Mr Kettle, from Victoria, has written eight books in the series and he was there to perform the difficult task of judging the best costumes on the day.

"Every kid has made a terrific effort; it's a shame there has to be only winner," Mr Kettle said.

Actually, there were several winners across each of the grades.

Mitchell State School's head of curriculum literacy Jane Filan said Paint the Town REaD was done in done in conjunction with the business houses of Mitchell to stress the importance of reading.

"Paint the Town REaD is done as part of Book Week each year," Mrs Filan said.

"This is the eighth year we've done it and we've won two awards at the Australia Day awards in that time."

Paint the Town REaD is an Australian initiative which works to overcome a 20% illiteracy rate of children arriving at school.

It does this by motivating communities across Queensland to read, talk, sing and rhyme with their children so they're ready to learn to read and write at school.

In Mitchell, the kids went around the business houses, where staff read stories.

As for the Reading Bug, he got a lift from Mitchell firies to help spread the good message.


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