(Germantown, TN) For the past seven years, first graders at Dogwood Elementary have taken part in the Heifer International Read To Feed Program.
This year, the entire school got involved to collect pledges, read books and buy animals for children in the U.S. and Third World Countries.
"I think we amazed some families how many books we read," said First Grade Teacher Julie Williams.
Students at Dogwood Elementary spent their Christmas break reading as many books as possible.
The more books they read the more money they raised.
School wide students read close to 16,000 books, and raised nearly $18,000 dollars to buy animals, lots of them, for families in need.
"We talked about the animals first and what products do those animals provide," said Williams.
Teachers say the idea is to motivate students to read all the time, and show them how they can make a difference in the lives of others.
Animals they picked will help families for years to come.
"I think it's a great idea because a lot of people don't have enough money to buy food, clothes and go to school," said Clark Adams.
Clark Adams and his brother read more than 200 books together, and raise around $800 dollars.
Dogwood students were able to raise enough money to buy three-plus Arks full of animals.
They will shipped to families in the states, Africa and Southeast Asia.
For more on the Heifer International Read To Feed Program click here.