This week to mark #BookWeekScotland, we ran a DEAR (Drop Everything And Read) session on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. Upon hearing the tannoy, everyone across the school – staff and pupils alike – were invited to drop what they were doing, pick up their books and spend 10-15 minutes reading.
There is plenty of research that proves the benefits of reading not just to Literacy skills but also our health and well-being in terms of stress levels and emotional intelligence, and our general knowledge and understanding of the world. Book sales increased during lockdown, and that increase in reading is something we would very much like to encourage and continue moving forward, so watch this space for more DEAR sessions in the future as well as increased provision to read for pleasure across the curriculum…
As this was the 10th anniversary of #BookWeekScotland, it made sense that the theme was Celebration. Therefore, we asked our BGE pupils to create book recommendation bunting. Some beautiful work resulted in a colourful array of bunting with a vast selection of books for people to try both old and new. We will be working on getting it hung up across the school across the next few days for everyone to see.
A big vote of thanks goes to the Interact group who merged their Children In Need dress down day with #BookWeekScotland and invited us all to come dressed as our favourite book characters. It is safe to say that the pupils had not anticipated coming to school on Wednesday to be taught by Winnie-the-Pooh, a dinosaur, an Oompa Loompa, and Hermione Granger to name but a few!
Finally, a big thanks to all our staff and pupils who always rise to the occasion whatever it is. And remember reading is for life, not just for special occasions!
As a way of marking World Book Day this year, we are celebrating all the reading we did for World Read Aloud Day. Please take some time (5 minutes max!) to watch the attached videos giving book recommendations and responses to the challenges issued on the WRAD site.
Thank you to families and pupils who have sent in their World Read Aloud Day activities; we are looking forward to sharing some of these, along with pupil work, next week as part of World Book Day. There is still time to add a submission via the form by the end of this week. Many thanks!
World Read Aloud Day is tomorrow and we would love it if our community and families got involved. Please have a look at our site which includes staff reading profiles and clips. If you are able to complete any of the at home activities / challenges, we would love to hear about it. There is a link to click on within the site itself which will take you to the form you can fill in and our site will also be shared via Group Call.
We look forward to seeing, and hearing, what you and your family are reading and listening to. We hope to share our accumulated resources as soon as possible and hopefully inspire some reading and listening journeys across our school community.
What better way to kick start Book Week Scotland than to have a virtual author visit. Obviously things are very different this year but the Scottish Book Trust launched their Scottish Friendly book tours and we were lucky enough to secure a spot to listen to Robin Stevens. Robin is the author of the Murder Most Unladylike series and during the session yesterday she discussed how she comes up with her ideas and plot structures of her murder mysteries. Robin was was engaging and we were able to ask her some questions that were well thought of. A very pleasant start to the week!
This year’s National Poetry Day focus was on vision. Last Thursday we set as many pupils and staff as possible the challenge of writing their own vision haikus. The effort put in was incredible so please enjoy a small selection for now, more to follow next term…
S1 parents – we have launched our personal reading programme for S1 – Book Bingo. We’re asking learners to complete at least one task by the end of term & submit via their Google Classroom (it will be assigned to them on there). This will be their only piece of homework / home learning across the school this first term as we ease them back in #literacy
Some of our BGE pupils have been giving their favourite books and authors a “shout out” to recommend them to others. Some have also talked about the benefits of reading during this time as a way to unwind and relax.
This is just a small selection for now but you can see more over on our twitter feed @AlfordEnglish.
StoryCon is a free creative writing and illustration conference for young people, organised by young people. It is hosted by The Scottish Book Trust and Book Week Scotland and this year it’s all moving online!
This is open to young people aged between 13-19 who are based in Scotland and have a love of writing, drawing or being creative. It will also give you the chance to get together digitally with other teens across Scotland and be part of a creative community.
You can take your pick of workshops and there will also be on demand content to watch.
It runs across two days: 18th and 19th June and you can book your place at eventbrite.co.uk.
Some of our BGE pupils have been producing some fantastic responses to their personal reading tasks. Mrs Mackenzie is working hard to put together a submission for The First Minister’s Reading Challenge and we couldn’t do this without the engagement from our BGE pupils with their personal reading so thank you to them. Here’s a small selection of some of their work and we’re also sharing via our new English Faculty twitter feed @AlfordEnglish #personalreading #readingispower #readingforpleasure