Inspire Me! Reading Buddies
Best use for a dull playground corner!
Many schools have Reading as a key area for development and improvement. Here’s how one school in Manchester have developed a love of reading!
Mrs Dearly – English Coordinator:
We have implemented a number of initiates this year in order to boost our reading standards. Reading Buddies are older children who visit younger children as soon as they have been registered. They spend just 10 minutes hearing children read and chatting to them about why their book is great. They have time to share the jokes and look at tricky vocabulary before they help the child change their book. The same Buddy reads with the same child at least 3 times a week and this has taken a lot of pressure off the teaching assistants to get through all the readers and the younger children really look forward to reading.
Wanting to do more and knowing that some children have very limited book / reading experience outside school we adopted a corner of the playground to be the Book Corner.
We installed the Books on the Wall and the chalk panels that go with each book. Younger children love sitting on their carpet squares, listening to the Reading Buddies tell a story and even more, they love getting the chalk to have a go at the story challenge. These have been so simple to start – the Buddies do them without any support now too. Write what might the bear be thinking? What did Goldilocks say to the bears when they caught her?
How is the little bear feeling when he has no porridge to eat? Who can suggest something else? Draw the troll under the bridge!
This has been a constant attraction for children from across the school. Children with English as an additional language plus special learning needs children have joined in every day. We added a box of simple books to the corner too and many children just sit and read during the lunch break.
Of these regular readers, teachers have noted improved fluency as they have had more opportunities to read familiar vocabulary to another children.