Why do we teach what we teach? (Our intent)
At St. Mary’s we aim to promote a love for reading as it is an essential life skill and personal pleasure. It enriches a child’s life; producing a lifelong learner and promotes curiosity and understanding of the world around them.
How do we teach it? (Our implementation)
Each class has time during the week where they visit the school’s library in order to listen to stories and select a book reflective of their interests and to enhance their current learning. Within classes, children can select books from their class libraries through a wide range of age-appropriate literature, including heritage classics.
Throughout the course of the academic year, various activities are offered as a means of fostering passion for reading. Every Tuesday after school the D.E.A.R. programme runs from 3.10pm to 4.10pm; parents and children are able to come in and get cosy with a book. Each Friday morning from 8.20am to 8.40am, there is a storytelling session held by a member of staff, school librarian or special guest for all interested participants. Children actively take part in the storytelling sessions by answering questions or engaging with the literature (i.e. puppets). The school’s playground ‘reading shed’ is opened to children in the summer term. Every Tuesday and Thursday, the school librarians host a series of activities in the library for children to participate in, such as: puzzles and active reading/dramatizations. There are two Scholastic ‘book fairs’ held each year which serves as a means of fundraising for the school’s library and classroom resources. A percentage of the sales made is given back to the school with free books for the children. The school also liaises with ‘The Curve’ and other community libraries so that children have opportunity to meet famous authors and participate in workshops. Finally, a plethora of events and competitions are planned for children during World Book Day and World Book Week, where children dress up as their favourite book character.
What is the difference that this makes? (Our impact)
By having access to a wide range of literature, both fiction and non-fiction, children are able to develop a broad base of general knowledge, which enriches their understanding of the world around them and helps them to become global citizens.