Hundreds of McFarland Unified School District elementary school students participated in the annual “Reading Across America” event by scores of guest readers.
The readers entertained and most importantly read of students on Thursday, March 2 and Friday, March 3, said District Superintendent Aaron Resendez, last week.
The goal of Read Across America, which is coordinated by the National Education Association and held annually on March 2 —help motivate children to read and celebrate the diversity in their community and country.
Former MUSD teacher returned to read at her sister’s classroom at Horizon School on Friday. She brought two friends/helpers who helped mesmerize her audience of middle-schoolers.
“I taught for 18 years at Kern Avenue Elementary School,” said Henderson. “Teaching was not my only career, but it was my favorite!”
“My father taught in McFarland,” she added. “My sister still teaches in McFarland.”
Henderson now writes the ocassional children’s book, and more importantly rescues abused and neglected dogs and cats — that sometimes becomes the subjects of such stories.
She read from one called “A Cat is a Cat, and That is That!”
All the while her cat and dog wandered around the classroom, stopping at the occasional happy student to get petted or to rub against.
She told her audience members about her journey because it wasn’t exactly like everyone elses.
She attended Bakersfield College, but dropped out early on. She first permanent job out of school: McFarland Police Department dispatcher. Then she went to Europe.
Henderson would later attend University of California, Irvine, majored in Music and got a job working for the Orange County Philharmonic.
Then, at age, 46, she became a teacher — “her favorite occupation,” she told the students. And did it for 18 years.
She started rescuing dogs, in between, and has had her dog Missy since 2016. Her cat “Siri” is a recent member of the family.
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