A reading culture will improve attainment, creativity and health and wellbeing across the curriculum.
We can break the term 'reading culture' down into four key areas. All the schools work with that have a thriving reading culture use elements from all these areas in their daily practice.
- Reading is celebrated and given a high profile in school
- All adults in school act like reading role models
- Books are embedded in activities across the curriculum
- Reading for pleasure is integrated into daily routine
Reading is celebrated and given a high profile in school
Reading and celebrating reading is clearly visible throughout the school, through wall displays, events and national programmes such as Bookbug Picture Book Prize, Read Write Count or Authors Live.
All adults in school act like reading role models
One of the most powerful things is to let children see how much you value reading. All staff in your school are comfortable talking about their reading habits and perhaps wear an "ask me what I am reading badge" or have an "I am currently reading" sign on their door.
You can also ask pupils to become role models, perhaps as reading ambassadors or library assistants, and encourage peer to peer recommendations. Less confident pupils can become reading role models to younger peers through a paired or shared reading scheme.
Books are embedded in activities across the curriculum
Books create rich contexts for learning and can immerse children in a topic or story; they are perfect for cross-curricular learning and projects. Scottish Book Trust's learning resources [LINK] offer ideas and tips for integrating books across the curriculum for both primary and secondary level.
Reading for pleasure is integrated into daily routine
Reading for enjoyment is familiar to pupils and they are able to develop their own reading habits. This includes allocating time for reading for pleasure, such as during form time or for 10 minutes as the beginning of a lesson, as well as activities such as drop everything and read. You are making time for reading within the busy school day and showing pupils that you value reading as an activity.
You can use the First Minister's Reading Challengeto help you build your reading culture.