This podcast was recorded at Walsgrave Church of England Primary School to review this year’s Summer Reading Challenge. Joy Court, who works in Coventry City Council’s Children, Learning & Young People’s Directorate as Learning Resources Manager and has responsibility for the city’s school library service. Joy is also involved with The Reading Agency and Summer Reading Challenge at national level. Joy talks about the importance of connecting schools with public libraries, and her role promoting the Challenge to schools, particularly those that have not been involved before. She outlines the preparations that are made both in schools and across the public library service for the Challenge to make it as attractive to children as possible. This year Coventry successfully piloted the participation of teenage volunteers, many of whom made themselves available to talk to children about the books in public libraries. Coventry will be extending this across the city next year as it proved immensely popular with children. We discuss how this year’s Space Hop theme was selected and the website that amplified the theme with interactive features and games. This year 59,000 people registered on the website. We also discuss Joy’s involvement with other areas of The Reading Agency work, and how initiatives such as Chatterbooks feed into the success of the Summer Reading Challenge. Finally we talk about the ongoing importance of the library as a place.
In the first podcast, Primary Teacher and Literacy Coordinator Bryony Harrison talks about how the Summer Reading Challenge ties in with her work in the school promoting literacy and fostering a love of reading and writing. Bryony reveals how she makes an impact on children’s reading habits, building up their enjoyment of books and reading. She describes the experience her pupils shared of the Summer Reading Challenge at Walsgrave Church of England Primary School this year, with promotional activities over the summer term, including visits to the local library and a partnership wtih the local Showcase Cinema who run a Bookworm Wednesdays programme over the summer holidays.
In the second podcast, three pupils from Walsgrave Church of England Primary School talk about their own successful experiences of the Summer Reading Challenge. Finn and Abby aged 10, and Dawson aged 11 (left to right on the photo above) discuss the this year’s theme – Space Hop – and its website, the school’s preparations for the Challenge, and the books they read.
This podcast was recorded at Walsgrave Church of England Primary School to review this year’s Summer Reading Challenge. The Head Teacher Kim Docking talks about how participation in the Challenge has gradually increased over the past two years as teachers and children alike have shared their enthusiasm across the school. The school serves a socially-mixed area, and for this summer, Kim was keen to involve those children who have no exposure to reading over the summer holidays and whose performance slides downwards at this time. So for Walsgrave Church of England Primary School, the strategic importance of the Summer Reading Challenge is about continuing to narrow gaps and ensure that all children enjoy equality of opportunity. Kim is confident that the Challenge has promoted awareness of the library service and has encouraged children to read and enjoy reading. By positioning the Challenge as an integral part of broader literacy initiatves and a thematic curriculum, the school is ensuring that its Summer Reading Challenge gains are sustainable.