- Literacy supports learning. Pupils need vocabulary, expression and organisational control to cope with the cognitive demands of all subjects.
- Writing helps us to sustain and order thought.
- Better literacy leads to improved self-esteem, motivation and behaviour. It allows pupils to learn independently. It is empowering.
- Better literacy raises pupils’ attainment in all subjects.
A mastery of literacy, whether it be reading, writing or use of spoken language, is vital in ensuring the best outcomes for all students in all areas of the curriculum. At Woodrush, all staff take an active role in promoting good literacy habits in order to ensure that all students have the ability to access the curriculum with confidence.
Some of our whole school initiatives to promote literacy include:
- Weekly ‘Drop Everything and Read’ sessions for all of years 7 and 8
- A ‘book in every bag’ policy for all students
- Use of specific literacy marking and feedback in all subject areas
- Use of the Accelerated Reader Programme in English for years 7 and 8
- The opportunity for students to complete an extra-curricular Literacy Leader qualification; Literacy Leaders also take a vital role in promoting literacy across the school
- Regular creative writing competitions
- Access to dictionaries and visibility of literacy focussed wall displays in all classrooms
Students also have access to the new public library situated in The Hub where they are able to select from a range of both fiction and non-fiction titles.
Research shows that not only does reading for pleasure have a positive impact on attainment across the curriculum, but students who are encouraged to read at home are more likely to enjoy reading. Some tips to encourage good reading habits include:
- Help you child choose books about their interests – see the links below for useful websites. However, avoid making choices for your child as they may be put off by not making the choice themselves.
- Model good reading habits by talking about books you have enjoyed.
- Encourage reading of non-fiction too e.g. newspapers, appropriate websites, leaflets.
- Magazines about your child’s hobbies or interests can also be a valuable resource. This can also make reading seem less of a ‘chore’ to the most reluctant readers.
- Ask your child about what they are reading, particularly if they have an Accelerated Reading book.
- Encourage your child to read for 20 minutes a day (as required by the Accelerated Reader programme).
- Ensure your child is a member of their local library.
- Buy books and magazines as treats or gifts.
Below are some websites which can support you in supporting your child’s literacy:
https://doc.renlearn.com/KMNet/R003985016GG79F2.pdf A parent’s guide to Accelerated Reader
http://www.arbookfind.co.uk/default.aspx Use this website to help your child choose suitably challenging reading books, particularly as part of the Accelerated Reader programme
http://www.worcestershire.gov.uk/libraries The library in The Hub is a member of the Worcestershire libraries network. If you live in Birmingham or Solihull, you may also wish for your child to become members of your local library network.
These websites allow you to download the opening chapter from thousands of books so you can help your child choose a book they will enjoy.