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Grenada fourth-grader Jazmine Travis holds up her Ole Miss pendant along with MAE President Joyce Helmick.

 
By GALEN HOLLEY
Staff Writer


   A Grenada fourth-grader has won tickets to the Egg Bowl, and she’ll be on-hand to cheer for the Ole Miss Rebels, thanks to her exceptional reading skills.
   Jazmine Travis read six books on her grade level to qualify for a drawing, and she was selected as one of two winners from among 15,000 contestants.
   The contest was called “Be a Champion and Read,” and was sponsored by the Mississippi Association of Educators.
   “I like funny stories and adventures. I just like to read, period,” said Travis. Several books in the young adults’ series Junie B. Jones were on her reading list, she said. Travis had to read six books to qualify, but added she’s probably read about 50 books this year.
   MAE President Joyce Helmick surprised Travis in her classroom Friday and presented her with three tickets to the big showdown Thursday between Ole Miss and Mississippi State.
   “This is a special, fun opportunity that we’re very happy to provide, as well as a means to incentivize and get children excited about reading,” said Helmick.
   Students in grades K-8 in Mississippi’s public school were invited to participate.
   When Travis turned in her entry form, she marked that she was an Ole Miss fan. A student from Southaven won on the Mississippi State side
   Travis’s mother, Stephanie, was on-hand to see her daughter receive the recognition.
   “She’s just always loved to read,” said Travis. “I used to read to her all the time when she was a child, reading books like the Bearenstain Bears. I really love to see her read, today. It means a lot as a parent.
   Travis also participates in the Accelerated Reader program at school, a process by which students’ critical reading skills are monitored by computer software.
   Travis will get the VIP treatment at the game, including visiting the sideline and receiving a prize pack from Ole Miss.


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