Monday, 24 November 2014

49 ideas to raise the profile of reading in schools

These are just bullet points at the moment but I will put it all into some sort of coherent state whenever I get an opportunity. The ideas are a mixture of what is already happening in my school and my R4P 'wishlist'. Some are directly relevant to the school I work in, but could easily be transferred into any school. The majority are pretty standard practice, although there should be a few in there that you won't have tried before (there's definitely a few I haven't tried yet!).
Reading for Pleasure- whole school ideas

Children learn about literature from what the adults about them do about it.
Zahnleiter, 1985

You want weapons? We’re in a library. Books...the best weapons in the world!
Dr Who, 1879

Finding ways to engage children in reading is one of the most effective ways to leverage social change.
OECD, 2002
  • Whole school questionnaire for pupils to gauge attitudes to R4P- present results to staff
  • School book council/reading council- two pupils from each class to attend meetings to talk about how to raise profile of reading
  • Lunchtime reading boxes for quiet area in playground
  • Regularly share favourite books and poems in assembly
  • West Earlham Junior School book awards- each year group to judge a particular category
  • Class author/theme- opportunities needed for classes to feedback to each other
  • Class ‘book talk’ sessions (at least once a week)
  • Extreme reading photo competition (pupils, staff and parents)
  • Weekly fifteen minute DEAR (Drop Everything And Read) time (pupils and staff)- staff as reading role models (newspapers, magazines, graphic novels, etc)
  • Lunchtime story and poetry clubs
  • Book club (and, equally importantly, Not A Book Club, where pupils read poems, magazines, comics, graphic novels, etc)
  • Class and individual rewards for using Reading Records
  • Book swap box (‘wandering’ book) for pupils and staff- reception area?
  • ‘Mr Green is reading…’ posters to also include all non-teaching staff
  • Daily class storytime
  • Reading cafes
  • Poem of the Day- to be performed by children and staff- classes to make anthologies of poems, short stories, etc
  • Book/author quiz- Between classes (families involved?)
  • ‘I am reading.…by....’ badges (pupils, staff, visitors)
  • Shadowing national book awards/competitions (Carnegie, Blue Peter, etc)
  • Out and about- book festivals, author visits in other schools, bookshops, libraries, etc
  • Video and audio books reviews- upload onto class blogs, etc
  • Pair up with a class from another school to swap reading recommendations
  • Celebrate World Book Day, National Poetry Day, Non-Fiction Week, etc

  • One staff member per week to share a book in staff meeting (2-3 minutes)
  • Regularly share favourite books and poems in assembly
  • Patron of Reading- Who to replace John Dougherty at the end of his tenure?
  • As well as regular visits from PoR (2-3 times a year), at least three visits a year from other authors or poets
  • Host meetings for SLS KS2 Fiction Group
  • Mystery Book/Random Read/Blind Date With A Book
  • Staff reading interviews by children (to be filmed or recorded on Audioboom)
  • R4P INSET- either at NCBC or invite Marilyn to us
  • Review folder/space on wall (Reading Wall), bank of ideas for staff to find out about new authors, poets, etc- reviews from Carousel, Books For Keeps, etc.

Parents / Community
  • Dads & Lads reading group (or similar)- focus on dads
  • Make it possible to borrow books from the school library
  • Events to be held jointly with WEIS (paired reading, etc) and CAN (especially library)
  • Community- West Earlham’s Favourite Books, ‘flash’ reading events.
  • Regular involvement with local library
  • Parent readers/Reading champions
  • Home/school liaison (My child loves reading xxxxx. What else will they enjoy?)- available in library one evening a week?
  • Information pack for parents- local libraries, websites, a few recommended books for each Year Group
  • ‘New for old’- parents to bring in books their children have outgrown and swap them

Environment / Resources
  • Library- ‘If you liked… then try…’ posters and bookmarks (Recommend for a friend)
  • Library and classroom- List of author/poet websites
  • Library- football magazines, comics, etc- use car boot sales, jumble sales, etc to pick up
  • Posters of new books, etc up all around the school (eg sport books in the changing rooms) and in classrooms
  • Posters of staff reading
  • Posters of ‘cool’ kids reading
  • Books from other cultures, dual language books