At Woodlands we are very fortunate to have excellent library facilities. We have over eight thousand books as well as computers, ipads, newspapers, magazines and careers information.
At our school we run the Accelerated Reader programme for all of our KS3 students.
“Accelerated Reader is a powerful tool for monitoring and managing independent reading practice, motivating your students to read for pleasure.” Renaissance Learning website
All students take a test which gives them a reading age and also indicates the level of book they should be reading for maximum growth. They then read books within their level, of which there is an extensive selection, and take an online quiz when they have finished a book.
We then celebrate their successes in various ways:
Names on Star board
Letters and postcards home
“Because students receive regular feedback from Accelerated Reader, teachers and librarians are given many opportunities to praise students for their successes and to discuss with them what they have been reading” Renaissance Learning website
All students have weekly library lessons in which we monitor their progress. They are all set three targets each term to monitor how much they are reading, how well they are understanding and the level at which they’re reading.
Drop Everything and Read
In our school we have DEAR four days each week. A DEAR session consists of getting the whole of KS3 to stop, drop what they are doing and to read for 20 minutes. We run this on a rolling timetable, and it always takes place for the first 20 minutes of a lesson.
Since introducing Accelerated Reader and DEAR the reading ethos in the school has improved dramatically, with interest in reading continually growing.
As well as improving our students’ reading ages, we also aim to develop reading for pleasure. To encourage this, we have regular activities and competitions and celebrate events such as World Book Day. We also organise an author visit each year for our year 7 students.
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