MTSU educators join the fun to ‘Read Across Americ...

MTSU educators join the fun to ‘Read Across America’ March 3-6

Several members of the MTSU community will take time out of their busy schedules to read to preschoolers next week.

Click on the poster for more information about Read Across America 2014 events.

They will participate in “Read Across America” Monday, March 3, through Thursday, March 6, at MTSU’s Child Development Center, located at 820 Fairview Ave. in Murfreesboro.

MTSU President Sidney A. McPhee will be joined by University Provost Brad Bartel; College of Education Dean Lana Seivers; Dr. Kathy Burriss, interim chair of the Department of Elementary and Special Education; and MTSU alumna Mary Esther Reed, the mayor of Smyrna, Tenn., are among those who will share stories with the youngsters ay the center.

McPhee is scheduled to read at 10:20 a.m. and Bartel is slated to read at 2:45 p.m. Monday, March 3.

Reed will read at 1:15 p.m. Wednesday, March 5. Seivers and Burriss will read Thursday, March 6, at 10:45 a.m. and 1:15 p.m., respectively.

Retired Rutherford County teacher Donna Williams will read at 9 a.m. Tuesday, March 4, and her former colleague Rosemary Sadler will read at 9 a.m. Wednesday, March 5.

“Read Across America” is sponsored by the National Education Association, which has declared Monday, March 3, Read Across America Day.

Dr. Sidney A. McPhee

Dr. Brad Bartel

The Child Development Center currently cares for 30 infants and toddler-age and 24 preschool-age children. The Tennessee Department of Human Services has given the center a three-star ranking, and the National Association for the Education of Young Children has given it grades of 98 for preschool and 95 for infants and toddlers.

“We believe in education and what can be done to help children,” said Beverly “Marzee” Woodward, the center’s director and lead mentor/teacher for the infant/toddler program.

“We have children with different needs and different ability levels.”

The center is one of only 100 laboratory schools of its kind in the nation. MTSU’s human development majors work with both age groups and do research at the center.

Mary Esther Reed

Dr. Kathy Burriss

Dr. Lana Seivers

Early childhood practicum students working at the center are called preservice teachers and may pursue either a child development or family studies degree track.

“We strive for a research-based effect in teaching,” said Woodward. “We’re very hands-on and get actively involved.”

For more information, contact Woodward at 615-898-2198 or

— Gina K. Logue (