Category Archives: Wicomico County

Teaching Social Emotional Learning in Literature Event Slated

Fruitland, MD — Join the Eastern Shore Literacy Association as it sponsors a session on Teaching Social Emotional Learning in Literature on Monday, March 23 at Adam’s Taphouse Grille. While there are many opportunities to integrate SEL into the school day, literature and stories provide for one of the most natural and impactful means of conveying the specific concepts behind it and more importantly of making them matter!

Booksource will present on access and use of free online tools for choosing classroom titles and evaluating the diversity in your current classroom library materials…and each attendee will receive free copies of books highlighted in the presentation.

Registration begins at 4:30 with dinner and presentations following beginning at 5:00.

The event is FREE for members and non-members can simply join by paying the $25 registration fee.

RSVP by Friday, March 20 at


Annual Barbara S. Davis Scholarship Information Available

Barbara S. Davis Scholarship FlyerThe annual Barbara S. Davis Scholarship is now available to high school seniors. Each year the Eastern Shore Literacy Association honors past president and membership chair Barbara S. Davis with an annual scholarship. Davis, a retired teacher in Wicomico County Public Schools, is remembered for her passion towards sparking the love of reading to all of her students and those in the local communities in which she served. Davis’ scholarship is awarded annually to an individual who intends on majoring in education in the amount of $1,000.

For more information or to review the scholarship criteria regarding the annual scholarship, visit our scholarship page.


Celebrate World Read Aloud Day 2020

Newark, Md. — Worcester County Public Schools (WCPS) is proud to announce it will take part in the annual World Read Aloud Day on Wednesday, February 5, 2020.

Student and staff can participate in the global project using the following steps via Flipgrid:

  • Go to
  • Log in using Office 365  or Google credentials (teachers can log in for younger students)
  • Hit the Green circle with the white plus sign
  • Introduce yourself by stating your name, state, and country
  • Read an excerpt from your favorite book/poem
  • Share why that excerpt is important

The global project is in conjunction with LitWorld, a nonprofit that encourages self-empowerment and community change through literacy. World Read AloudDay now reaches millions of people in more than 100 countries.


Community Baby Shower a Literacy Success

Give aways books on table

Salisbury, MD — There was a lot of energy in the air during the Community Baby Shower hosted by the Wicomico County Judy Center at the Christian Outreach Center on Gordy Road Saturday morning. Families expecting a little one in the future were invited to learn of the different services in supporting the upbringing of their future child.

Eastern Shore Literacy Association member MaryKate Ford is shown sharing about early literacy books to one family attending the Community Baby Shower sponsored by the Wicomico County Public Schools’ Judy Center.

Other community groups in attendance included: Amazing Grace Daycare, Amerigroup, Birth to Five, Chesapeake Health Care, Cross Pointe Nazarene, Department of Social Services, Focus Point, Frog Street: Love & Learn, Grace Center for Maternal and Women’s Health, Jordan Child Development Center, Kenisha Fletcher Photography, Lead4Life Inc., Local Management Board, Lower Shore Early Childhood Mental Health Consultation, Maryland EXCELS, PRMC: Labor & Delivery, Shore Grace Family Wellness, Wicomico County Health Department, Wicomico County Public Library, and Wraparound Maryland Inc.


Finalist Named in Young Authors’ Contest

Salisbury, Md. – After receiving hundreds of submissions from talented writers, the Eastern Shore Literacy Association (ESLA) is proud to announce its finalist in the 2020 Young Authors’ Contest. Finalists are individuals who have finished in the top three in their respective category, poetry or short story, and grade level. Each finalist in grades 1-12 submitted an original writing artifact that was judged using a blind scoring method.

“We continue to get high quality of entries year in and year out,” ESLA Young Authors’ Contest Chair Brian Cook explained as entries came in from 24 different schools, public, private, and homeschools. “We are fortunate to have many of our Eastern Shore schools putting an emphasis on student writing. Both the students and teachers’ efforts are making it more and more difficult each year to determine finalist because the quality of writing continually gets better.”

Finalists and their families, teachers, school administrators, and central officer personnel are now invited to take part in the Young Authors’ Awards Reception at Salisbury University in the Holloway Hall Auditorium, located on the first floor, on March 4, 2020 at 6:30 pm.

“We hope to continue the tradition we started two years ago of building anticipation in each of our finalist and get everyone here to Salisbury University to celebrate student writing. We feel last year’s turnout in Holloway Hall was topnotch, and we want to continue making this evening the ‘Grammy’s of Writing’ for our students,” Young Authors’ Contest co-chair Lizanne Wallace explained. “This is the night where we place student authors on a pedestal for their exemplary writing ability.”

The winning work of each student will be featured in the contest’s anthology and one will be given to each finalist. Electronic versions of the anthology will be available as well.

Individuals earning finalist status are listed alphabetically by last name in each grade and category. The order shown below does not reflect the placement where student authors finished in the contest.

*Grade 1, Poetry –  Serena Jaoude, Worcester Preparatory.

*Grade 1, Short Story – Ava Gibbs, The Salisbury School; Luke Holder, The Salisbury School.

Grade 2, Poetry – Madeleine Cook, Pocomoke Elementary; La’nya Randall, Glen Avenue Elementary; Isabella Rice, Worcester Preparatory.

Grade 2, Short Story – Montane Kilgoe, Glen Avenue Elementary; Lily Grace Kirby, Ocean City Elementary; Anna McCormack, Ocean City Elementary.

Grade 3, Poetry – Callan Bergquist, North Salisbury Elementary; London Noelle Morton, North Salisbury Elementary; Jackson Reddish, North Salisbury Elementary.

Grade 3, Short Story – Yamose Alazy, Delmar Elementary; Elias Baldridge, Ocean City Elementary; Ellie Wells, Buckingham Elementary.

**Grade 4, Poetry – Kinzie Bunting, Worcester Preparatory; Ellie Phillips, Worcester Preparatory; Trezdon Santos, North Salisbury Elementary; Cooper Senter, North Salisbury Elementary; Avery Wiltbank, North Salisbury Elementary.

Grade 4, Short Story – Reed Luppens, North Salisbury Elementary; Ben Rafinski, Worcester Preparatory; Ryan Shipp, Worcester Preparatory.

Grade 5, Poetry – Peyton Davis, North Salisbury Elementary; Lucy Gibson, Deal Island Elementary; Karsyn Pete, North Salisbury Elementary.

**Grade 5, Short Story – Peter Jin, North Salisbury Elementary; Gavin Parks, Deal Island Elementary; Charlotte Malone, North Salisbury Elementary; Madison Wheeler, Pittsville Elementary.

Grade 6, Poetry – Alex Catlin, Salisbury Middle; Adelaide Hope Dawkins, Berlin Intermediate; Hannah Taylor, Salisbury Middle.

Grade 6, Short Story – Tyler Netting, Worcester Preparatory; Sydney Todorov, Worcester Preparatory; Charles Williams, Salisbury Middle.

Grade 7, Poetry – Johanna Hallman, Stephen Decatur Middle; Josephine Palmer, Stephen Decatur Middle; Diva Shrestha, Salisbury Middle.

Grade 7, Short Story – Ava Baer, Mardela Middle and High School; Sierra Merritt, Pocomoke Middle School; Landon Schul, Worcester Preparatory.

**Grade 8, Poetry – Josh Blume, Stephen Decatur Middle; Kaiden Bonbright, The Salisbury School; Tanner Ellis, Stephen Decatur Middle; Mia Lucinda Lovitt, Stephen Decatur Middle.

Grade 8, Short Story – Pim Noparat, Stephen Decatur Middle; Ella Vilmar, Bennett Middle; Abbi Weeks, Stephen Decatur Middle.

Grade 9, Poetry – Emily Garlock, James M. Bennett High; Riley Moyer, Worcester Preparatory; Emily O’Brien, The Salisbury School.

Grade 9, Short Story – Jessica Beck, Stephen Decatur High; Emily Leon, The Salisbury School; Rory Pugh, Worcester Preparatory.

Grade 10, Poetry – Brooke Phillips, Worcester Preparatory; Maya Matava, James M. Bennett High; Alexis Robertson, The Salisbury School.

**Grade 10, Short Story – Shannon Cottingham, Mardela Middle and High School; Rosy Gao, James M. Bennett High; Jake Gillespie, Stephen Decatur High; Madeline Umsted, Mardela Middle & High.

Grade 11, Poetry – Ki-Jhae Bull, Pocomoke High; Waverly Choy, Worcester Preparatory; Hannah Perdue, Worcester Preparatory.

Grade 11, Short Story – Jenny Chen, James M. Bennett High; Sophia Smith, James M. Bennett High; Lydia Woodley, Stephen Decatur High.

Grade 12, Poetry – Marvin Mason, Pocomoke High; Devin Wallace, Worcester Preparatory; Chloe Westbrook, Pocomoke High.

*Grade 12, Short Story – Mulan Bell, James M. Bennett High.

*Indicates category did not have three finalists.

**Indicates category had a tie resulting in more than three finalists.


About Eastern Shore Literacy Association

Eastern Shore Literacy Association is a nonprofit organization with the mission to improve the level of literacy in the lower three counties (Somerset, Wicomico, and Worcester) on Maryland’s Eastern Shore.  It promotes quality literacy instruction by: supporting the mission of the State of Maryland Literacy Association and International Literacy Association, disseminating best literacy practices to educators and parents, advocating for literacy issues through legislation and collaborating with educational institutions, professional organizations and businesses.

The group is active in the Lower Eastern Shore communities supporting literacy initiatives and individuals who have sparked a passion for reading. The group is made up primarily of K-12 educators (both current and retired) from public and private schools across Maryland’s Lower Eastern Shore as well as individuals active in the higher education community

Tall Tales Event Successful


ESLA members socialize at Tall Tales in Salisbury.

Salisbury, MD — The Eastern Shore Literacy Association hosted a social event at Tall Tales on October 17th. The two-hour event was comprised of members from all three lower shore counties, and was a great location for networking. Multiple new members were signed up while many renewed their memberships.