Facilitated book clubs for children aged 7-16 in curriculum time - promoting a life long love of reading

We are seeking funding for an extended school pilot with the ARK schools network in London to facilitate book clubs in five of their schools starting in October 2014.

Once we have this measurable pilot we will be able to roll out programme across the whole of London
Book Clubs in Schools provide facilitated book clubs for children during curriculm time - reaching even the most reluctant reader and promoting a lifelong love of reading.
We create a place in schools during school curriculum time where:
- We talk about books in the wider world
- Everyone is included
- Talking in class is encouraged
- You can agree to disagree
- Reading helps writing
Also as part of this we involve parents from the school and an inter-generational mix of people from the wider community to act as Book Club mentors. We complement the syllabus working with teachers on measurable academic results.

Background
We have worked with school children for 6 years, to date so over 1,000 pupils have participated in Book Clubs in Schools in key stages 2 and 3. Alongside the literacy benefits we have also seen the genuine social benefits created by the Book Clubs, with pupils making new friends and connections which has positive effects across the schools.

How it works
The book clubs take place in school, meeting once a week during the school day, and not at breaks or lunchtimes making it ‘Golden or Special’ time. A teacher chooses the group (6-8) of children based on ability and group dynamics, A Book Club leader (volunteer) chooses the book in consultation with the teacher and the children. Membership of a Book Club group rotates every term. There is no homework as such but reading will be done in the children’s own time leaving Book Club time for discussion and debate.

Testimonials
I think he enjoyed being in a special club and breaking the book down into small pieces. He is definitely reading more and I noticed an improvement in his fluency and expression. The book club is a fantastic way to bring the children together. It really does teach them that reading is something to be enjoyed. Richard, parent
"You get to meet other people that you don’t always meet at school,
I liked looking up the tricky words and I am reading more." Rosie, year 4
"The book clubs are more than just encouraging the children to read – they are about dialogue and conversation – teaching them to enjoy sharing and listening to each other" Stephen, volunteer
"I look forward to coming to book club because we talk about the book which makes it more exciting" – Ruth, aged 10

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