Struggling Readers

10 ways to increase enthusiasm for reading in your classroom

Enthusiasm: Make sure everyone understands that reading enthusiasm – regularly choosing to read even when there’s no adult around – correlates strongly with academic success, even in maths (PISA; IoE et al). Enjoyment of reading improves children’s life-chances! Self-identification: Focus all colleagues on the job of generating enthusiasm for reading:… Read More

Co-authoring with My Father

By Robbie Gibbons   My dad, Alan Gibbons, was performing writing workshops in schools and community centres around the country. When I had time off from university I helped out. Part of the sessions involved ‘scaffolding’ a story with the kids. We would give them a step-by-step plot, but leave… Read More

Working with Bali Rai

Working with Bali Rai is like being around a fizzing ball of energy with a completely infectious enthusiasm for books, reading and writing. Spend 10 minutes with him – it is impossible not to get drawn into his world. In 2013/2014, Bali and I ran a book club for year… Read More

Hear from a Librarian about Bali Rai

Last academic year, our school took part in an after school book club at the British Library.  Its purpose was to kindle a love of reading for a selection of year 7 and 8 students who were struggling due to either lack of ability or interest. The author working with… Read More

How do I teach a novel that addresses sensitive issues?

I thought I could answer this one easily, especially having spent most of my teaching career with Atticus Finch and Tom Robinson, but when something really contemporary comes along it can leave you flummoxed. To what extent do you discuss scenes of torture and political corruption with a KS3 class?… Read More

How can you support struggling readers?

It’s that time of year again: new pupils, new faces, new reading levels, new panic over how best to support them in your classroom. It’s probably best to start by establishing the main barriers in class and create a strategy from there. Engaging demotivated and reluctant readers The Collins Read… Read More

The Power of Mystery in History

By Mike Gould When I was offered the chance to write The Body in the Car Park for Read On I jumped at it. My fascination with Richard III goes back many years, beginning in childhood when I first heard about the mysterious disappearance… Read More

Extreme Stories from Our Earth

By Alan Parkinson   Most days go according to plan. Nothing out of the ordinary happens and they pass without incident. There is a Latin phrase, Carpe diem, which means to ‘seize the day’, but most days we let drift by ‘unseized’. Some people, however, do things differently, and their… Read More

Bringing history to life: writing Invasion

By Alan Gibbons   One of the last survivors of the First World War, Harry Patch, described war as ‘organised murder.’ So imagine how the young men in the Allied Forces felt as they headed for the Normandy beaches on June 6th, 1944, a date thar would go down in… Read More

A New Reader: Call Me Drog

Call Me Drog is a refreshing new novel for the classroom and would work well with Lower Key Stage three classes. It is a different and absorbing book that will appeal to both boys and girls. The story is centred around and told… Read More