Principal rides horse into gym for reading event

Swan Valley Middle School principle Brad Erlenceck addresses the student body after riding a horse into the auditorium as part of the schools March Madness reading month, Friday, Feb. 28, 2014 at Swan Valley Middle School in Thomas Township, Mich. His entrance drew cheers and laughter. It's all to rally kids for the March into Reading Month challenge to read 100,000 pages as a school. Students are competing against one another and the staff, and whichever grade reads the most pages in March earns a half-day of recess. (AP Photo/The Saginaw News, Neil Barris)
Swan Valley Middle School principle Brad Erlenceck addresses the student body after riding a horse into the auditorium as part of the schools March Madness reading month, Friday, Feb. 28, 2014 at Swan Valley Middle School in Thomas Township, Mich. His entrance drew cheers and laughter. It's all to rally kids for the March into Reading Month challenge to read 100,000 pages as a school. Students are competing against one another and the staff, and whichever grade reads the most pages in March earns a half-day of recess. (AP Photo/The Saginaw News, Neil Barris)

THOMAS TOWNSHIP, Mich. (AP) — A Michigan principal who wanted to get his students fired up about reading greeted them on horseback for an assembly in the school’s gym.

The Saginaw News reports (http://bit.ly/1i6T3sP ) Swan Valley Middle School Principal Brad Erlenbeck on Friday dressed in a Spartan costume and rode in with a sword held high.

His entrance drew cheers and laughter. It’s all to rally kids for the March into Reading Month challenge to read 100,000 pages as a school.

Students are competing against one another and the staff, and whichever grade reads the most pages in March earns a half-day of recess.

The school is in Saginaw County’s Thomas Township, 85 miles northwest of Detroit. Erlenbeck says: “If you want to get the kids excited, you’ve got to be a little zany yourself.”

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Information from: The Saginaw News, http://www.mlive.com/saginaw

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