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Nathan Hale student receives national award (Video)





During a Zoom call, 10-year-old Xylyn couldn’t resist reading to a group that included his principal and teacher.    

On the call, this Nathan Hale School fifth grader received an award and prizes for the most minutes read during the Imagine Learning Fill Your Backpack with Adventure contest.  

Imagine Learning is an educational app filled with adaptive digital curriculum to accelerate learning in language development and other subjects.  

“Xylyn, I don’t know if you know this but you were busier than anybody else in this program, did you know that?” Kristen Bidinger, Imagine Learning area partnership manager, asked Xylyn over the Zoom call.   

Bidinger told Xylyn he recorded 6,171 minutes during 58 snippets of himself reading books.   

This is a major accomplishment for Xylyn, who is autistic and had difficulty learning how to read.  

“I never knew how to read,” he said.  

“This is the second year I have had Xylyn,” said Tracie Lott, an intervention specialist at Nathan Hale. “At first he didn’t enjoy reading. But now that we found an app where he can listen to the stories, it just made it more enjoyable for him.” 

On the call, Bidinger showed Xylyn his prizes, which included a solar powered backpack and a Fire HD 8 tablet. 

Prize a Nathan Hale Student won


“Oh, cool!” Xylyn said as he saw the prizes.  

Joelle McIntosh, the principal at Nathan Hale, said  when you have support from you teachers and Xylyn's mom anything is possible. 

"Xylyn's mom is making sure he is reading and improving his love of reading," she said.