Reading for Pleasure at Sedlescombe Primary School
Reading for pleasure is at the heart of everything we do at Sedlescombe Primary School and runs intrinsically through our curriculum and every element of school life. We believe that developing a love of reading will stay with our pupil’s for life and make them passionate, interested and well-rounded individuals who develop a life-long love of everything books and reading related.
Our School Libraries
We have two incredibly well stocked and beautifully presented and organised libraries in our school, one for KS1 and one for KS2, that the children have regular access to where they can change their books and immerse themselves in our super range of books. We have a huge collection of up to date fiction books, non-fiction books, picture books, poetry books and graphic novels which our pupils can enjoy alone, with a friend or as a group.
Our Classroom Libraries
As well as our school libraries, each class has their own class library which is themed to a continent of the world and creates an exciting, friendly and warm reading environment and contains a range of appropriate books for the class in question. The children have daily opportunities to explore and relax in these inviting libraries and they have really helped foster a love of reading in our learning environments.
Daily Reading for Pleasure
To really enjoy reading and gain a love of books, it needs to be experienced daily. We give daily opportunities for children to read to themselves and also to listen and enjoy a class story. Many children will also get the opportunity to read with an adult and in a group also. Our daily class worships are also centred around children’s literature and it is likely the children will also hear an additional two to three books a week as a whole school.
Every year, the children in year 5 have the opportunity to apply to be a ‘Reader Leader’ which means they will be role models to the rest of the school when it comes to reading. The eight chosen children will spend the whole academic year supporting children with changing books, giving advice on which books to select, running reading groups, telling stories to younger children and much more. As the name suggests, they will be leading reading across the school.
Lunchtime Reading Garden
To ensure reading for pleasure opportunities carry on throughout the day, the Reader Leaders organise and operate a lunchtime reading garden so children of all ages can enjoy a story. There are picture books and short stories to enjoy with a friend, comic books and graphic novels to browse through and even a puppet theatre where the children love to devise and perform shows for each other.
Rich Reads Newsletter
Our Rich Reads Newsletter is sent home termly and contains a book recommendation from different members of the teaching team as well as an award winning book and a website suggestion, where further book recommendations can be found. The teaching team discuss their suggestions so a variety of quality texts across the age bracket are recommended and we include a range of fiction books, picture books, graphic novels, poetry books and information books. As well as this, we identify a pre-primary text to encourage pre-school readers, a post-primary young adult recommendation to encourage our school leavers to continue a love of reading and an adult recommendation to encourage all adults to become readers. We also have special themed Rich Reads Newsletters at different times of year so our children can really get into the spirit of occasions such as Christmas, Anti-Bullying Week, Autumn etc. with activity ideas and rich text suggestions.
Sedlescombe Book Swap
A hugely popular event in our Reading for Pleasure calendar is the Sedlescombe Book Swap. Once or twice a term, every single member of our school community has the opportunity to come and trade a book from home that they no longer require for a book that they have never read before (children and adults!). We have a huge range of children and adult books that can be selected from, which is constantly changing due to the nature of book swap. We are also very lucky to have donations from our community that top up our selection when we are running low.
Author Visits and interactions
We have figured that if we want children to engage with reading and be inspired by texts, then the best way of achieving that is by exposing them to a range of authors both in the flesh and via various media. In the past year we have been lucky enough to have visits from Ross Montgomery, Thomas Taylor and Fiona Longmuir who ran whole school assemblies and/or class workshops which allowed our children to listen to how the authors gained inspiration and to ask questions to probe further into their writing process. Beyond visits, we actively encourage our teachers, pupils and parents to engage with authors via email and social media and we have had delightful responses from authors including Lucy Strange, Nathan Byron and Kathryn Hulick amongst others.
In the classroom, children and staff regularly engage with the Authorfy website which has unlimited access to a huge range of resources including: videos introducing authors and their masterclasses, 10-minute author challenges linked to their rich texts, extracts, authors of the week videos, classroom resources/activity packs and letters from authors encouraging and motivating children’s reading and writing.
Pupil Premium Children Termly Texts
So that all members of our community have equal access to rich texts, we use our pupil premium funding to provide a book each term to every child who is on our pupil premium register. This text will likely be linked to a class’s upcoming topic and will hopefully inspire our children to be passionate about the topic and delve further into it. The books chosen will also be available for all members of the class to read and enjoy.
Staff Book Club
To keep up to date with a variety of literature, for both adults and children alike, we run a termly book club for staff. A range of texts are offered and staff can choose to read as many of them as they would like and then discuss them with other members of staff in our book club meetings. It has really helped many of our members of staff to renew their own love of reading and in turn, inspire their class to have a life-long love of reading.
We are always looking for other ways to enagage our pupils with children’s literature and inspire a lifelong love of reading so if you have any ideas, we would love to hear them. Please email Mr Cole at email@example.com if you have any suggestions.