One of our key priorities this year is to improve the literacy of all of our students. Research indicates that there is a strong correlation between high literacy levels and academic achievement, and interestingly the likelihood of leading a happy and fulfilled life.
Many children leave primary school with fairly proficient reading skills. However, reading as a life skill requires so much more than this. Today’s curriculum requires students to be able to access increasingly complex texts as a means of achieving qualifications in a variety of subject areas. We also take every opportunity to celebrate and promote reading for pleasure; students have the opportunity to read weekly with our D.E.A.R (Drop Everything And Read) sessions.
Accelerated Reader (AR)
To further promote reading for pleasure, all students in Years 7 and 8 are enrolled on a programme called Accelerated Reader (AR). Students must read within their Book Level Range and are expected to read for 20 minutes each evening to meet their minimum reading target. When a student finishes a book, they complete a short quiz on it, to prove that they have read it carefully. If they pass this quiz they receive points for the book based on the number of words read.
Exciting news for all you AR quizzers! You will now be able to quiz your books before and after school, to give you even more of a chance to become a Word Millionaire! AR will now be available between 8am and 8pm by clicking here. Students can log in with their usual username and password.
The minimum target each year is to read 12 books and pass 12 quizzes (4 per term).
Reading books for AR is as important as any other kind of homework and students may face detention if they do not do it. However, they are also rewarded with EPRAISE stickers for reaching certain levels.
For keener readers, certificates and acknowledgements are given for reaching word count milestones up to 1 million words and student names are displayed on a 'Word Millionaire' board.
The Learning Resource Centre
The King's School also has a fantastic library. It includes:
Fiction: we offer an extensive and growing collection of fiction books, suitable for all ages, abilities and tastes. We also have an extensive collection of easy reads.
Non-fiction: we stock a wide range of information books to support research, assist homework tasks and allow students to pursue their own interests.
Computers: in the library we have a bank of computers. Students can use these during lessons or to complete homework at break times and after school.
Students are expected to have a reading book with them at all times while they are in school. They can borrow most library books for a month at a time and our librarian is always willing to help students find books that they will enjoy or which will help them to improve their literacy.
Letters From Authors
As part of tasks in Accelerated Reader literacy lessons, students are given the option to write to their favourite author. We have had some lovely successes in receiving replies from some really popular writers. Here are a few samples of them so far: