A wee while ago, Lily, a pupil in Y5, handed me a letter which I have copied out below. I was blown away not only with the quality of her writing but also by her obvious passion for reading – I’m sure you’ll agree it comes across so strongly!
“The books transported her into new worlds and introduced her to amazing people who lived exciting lives” – Matilda Roald Dahl.
You may be wondering why a Year 5 pupil is writing you a letter. I am coming to you with a proposal. I personally believe Woodlands is missing something extremely valuable and vital to enhancing a fellow student’s creativity and imagination. Please read ahead.
Reading the right book has the ability to transport you to an unfamiliar realm of possibility and imagination. For those pupils of Woodlands that dare to dream or feel the escape of being immersed in an Author’s words. Where an hour has passed but you feel it’s only been a minute since you last turned a page.
Reading is like exercise for our minds. Let’s weight our thoughts and stretch our imaginations further that the familiarity of Hogwarts or fairytales.
I want to share my own ideas and interpretation of the writer’s words and compare them to a friend’s and laugh at how we both viewed a character completely differently despite it being the same words on paper.
We have sports teams, dance classes, music lessons even CRAZY GOLF! But as you always say in your newsletters just how crucial reading is, why do we not have a book club?????
We need a book club!
My proposed idea will need support and organising with another teacher and we can work together to figure a way to meet up, may be once week or once a month. I have thought of a way to make it work financially for parents by a few different ideas – if we all already own one book in common, then we could start with that, or if we all have library cards we can source books from different libraries across Sefton, or search charity shops, eBay or Amazon for used books. Book club members could meet once a month when the book is finished, or once a week with a goal with a goal for a certain number of pages or chapters that is ¼ of the book (because there are four weeks in the month). We could meet at lunchtime or after school. I understand that are already so many clubs and teachers time is being used already, but if I could just find one teacher who holds the same passion I hold, we are off to a great start. I can think of questions to ask during the club about what we have read and then discuss and compare our answers, like comprehension but in a fun way!
I am sure there are plenty of students who wish there was something like this available. I feel it is my duty and responsibility to bring this group to life.
If you would like to meet with me, we can talk about my idea and if it is possible to make it work. I know you are very busy with lots of responsibilities and duties running Woodlands, but I really do think this would benefit so many students and even help with some student’s confidence and ability in reading, as well as making reading fun!
I would like to offer this club to Year 5 and 6 currently as I feel the ability in reading levels will be similar. However, we could still run other book clubs for other years (I just wouldn’t be joining!).
Thank you for taking the time to read my proposal and I hope you give the time to think about my idea seriously.
As you would say in your newsletter “Any child that doesn’t enjoy reading, just hasn’t found the right book!”
I’m happy to tell you that Woodlands’ Book Club is now up & running for our Y5&6 children. The sessions will be facilitated by Mrs Chapman but very much led by the children themselves. The book the group has chosen to read first is ‘Nutcracked’ by Susan Adrian.
As Lily says in her letter, “Any child that doesn’t enjoy reading, just hasn’t found the right book!”, so I am thrilled that we now have a book club. Reading is something we value highly at Woodlands. The children are presented with quality texts through their English topics & also have a wide range of books read to them by their class teachers (this has been a particular focus over the past couple years). One of the members of our newly formed book club said, “I never used to like reading but since we’ve been reading such good books in Y5&6, I can’t stop!” Music to my ears…