When Luke Covington enters kindergarten at River Ridge Elementary School next year, he'll have some big footsteps to follow.
Those who know Luke's older sister, 9-year-old Emma, say she has set a good example for her little brother: study hard, make good grades and excel.
"Emma works diligently to maintain excellent grades," said Kimberly Garvin, Emma's social studies, reading and English teacher. "She is always an honor roll student and is a voracious reader."
The daughter of Travis and Marianne Covington of Evans, Emma has earned more than 150 Accelerated Reader points this year and says her favorite stories are make believe ones.
"It's kind of like if you're upset, you can read something and it's like everything's OK again," said Emma, who immerses herself in reading when she isn't dancing.
Mrs. Covington said she and her husband began reading to Emma when she was very young and that her love of reading stems from that.
"She loves to read," Mrs. Covington said. "We've just always read to her."
In addition to her love of reading, Emma enjoys all forms of dance. She is a student at Center Stage Dance Academy where she takes lessons in clogging, tap, jazz, ballet and hip hop. She's been dancing since she was 4 and says her favorite style of dance is tap.
"I like jazz, too, but I think I like tap the most," she said. "That's one of the highest dances I'm in, so I think I like it the best."
Garvin said Emma has learned from her parents that she must take responsibility for her own actions. She also knows, says her mom, that if she commits to something, she has to see it through.
Mrs. Covington said Emma spends at least six hours a week at dance practice, while additional time is spent participating in competitions and festivals.
"Emma is a well-balanced student, dancer, sister, daughter and friend," Garvin said. "She is an excellent student who always wears a smile. This young lady is a friend to all."
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