1.2 Leadership of Learning
Key Area 1.2.1 – Reading Leadership Group
We expect Reading Schools to form a reading leadership group who input into your action plan and meet regularly to discuss progress and ideas.
The leadership group must:
Include learners and the school librarian, if the school has one. It can also include teachers, support staff and Senior Management Team
Meet regularly to discuss and implement plans
Key Area 1.2.2 – Learner role modelling
We expect Reading Schools to show how learners visibly promote reading and recommend books to one another.
Schools must sustain core actions, examples include:
Wearing ‘Ask me what I’m reading’ badges / lanyards
Talking about books they’ve read in assembly / at whole-school occasions
Creating learner-led recommendation lists for display
Making learner-led shelf labels or signs
Putting recommendation notes / bookmarks in books
Making recommendation videos
Making book trailers / vlogs
Making learner-led book lists for staff
Learners should support one another in more formal ways in one of the below ways, or in another way that suits their setting:
Taking part in a paired reading project
Acting as reading mentors
Sharing storytelling videos / activities with reading buddies
Leading a reading club
Key Area 1.2.3 – Visible staff role modelling across the school
We expect Reading Schools to demonstrate how all staff in the school show that they are readers.
To achieve silver level, Reading Schools need to sustain the core level. Examples of actions are:
Wearing lanyards or badges
Talking about books they’ve read in assembly / at whole-school occasions
Giving learners opportunities to see them reading
Having 'guess the reader' displays with photos of staff favourite books / bookshelves
Taking part in social media reading challenges, eg. 'post a photo of your reading lunch'
Sharing book recommendation videos
Key Area 1.2.4 – Staff development
We expect Reading Schools to support staff to develop their knowledge around reading for pleasure.
Schools should support staff development by completing both of the below mandatory actions:
Key contact attending a Reading Schools CLPL session / webinar
Staff are using Scottish Book Trust resources to widen knowledge around reading for pleasure
Schools should extend staff development by completing the below three mandatory actions:
Involving the staff team / teachers of other subjects / support staff in training around reading for pleasure e.g. Scottish Book Trust webinars
Reading more widely about the pedagogy and research around reading for pleasure
Engaging with colleagues and sharing work via social media or face-to-face meetings
Key Area 1.2.5 – Staff knowledge of contemporary children’s literature
We expect Reading Schools to support staff to develop their knowledge and awareness around contemporary children’s literature.
Schools should make staff aware of contemporary children’s literature by completing the below mandatory action:
- Sharing new book lists and other appropriate resources
At silver level schools should confirm that staff have access to contemporary children’s literature to read. This could include:
Inviting your local librarian in to talk to staff about new books available to them and ensuring they have a library card
Gifting a contemporary children's book to each staff member, encouraging them to share across the team
Having a ‘book borrow box’ in the staff room with regularly updated contemporary children's books
Arranging a staff trip to a local bookshop to speak to booksellers about contemporary children’s titles
1.3 Leadership of change
Key Area 1.3.1 – Whole-school action plan
We expect Reading Schools to submit an action plan detailing their aims for progressing their reading culture.
The action plan must:
Be agreed by the reading leadership group
Include a vision statement linked to school values
Confirm that reading for pleasure is included in the School Improvement Plan and detail how actions support it
Include plans to check progress
Key Area 1.3.2 – School environment
We expect Reading Schools to show how they have provided appealing and comfortable spaces to read in the school environment and make reading visible.
Schools should sustain core level which is providing appealing and relaxing reading areas in collaboration with learners and using displays to promote reading. This could include, for example:
Having appealing reading areas throughout the school, eg. in shared spaces / corridors / within your school library area
Creating classroom book corners / reading areas designed by learners (possibly as part of an enterprise project)
Providing learners with cushions / encouraging them to turn over their chairs and relax when they're reading
Creating themed book displays
Displaying new book suggestions, eg. 'Hot Books' / 'Bookflix'
Having displays about the power of reading
Schools should create opportunities for learners to read outside the classroom in one of the below ways, or in another way that suits their setting:
Having reading sessions outdoors
Having reading spaces in the playground, eg. a reading bench or storytelling chair
Having a playground library
Incorporating reading into breakfast or after-school clubs
Incorporating reading into school events, eg. Christmas celebrations
Key Area 1.3.3 – National events and celebrations
At silver level, we expect Reading Schools to build on reading routines to generate excitement around reading by taking part in national reading celebrations and prizes.
Schools should generate excitement around reading by taking part in one of the below initiatives, or in another that suits their setting:
Book Week Scotland
World Book Day / Night
National Poetry Day
Bookbug Picture Book Prize
Scottish Teenage Book Prize
First Minister’s Reading Challenge
1.5 Management of resources to promote equity
Key Area 1.5.1 – Access to high-quality books
We expect Reading Schools to provide up-to-date reading materials relevant to the needs, interests and experiences of all learners.
Schools should make sure that learners have access to contemporary and diverse reading materials relevant to their needs, interests and experiences by completing the below four mandatory actions:
Providing learners with access to a school or public library – this could take the form of class / group book boxes or a 'personal shopping experience' using library catalogues
Involving learners in the selection of books and other reading materials
Regularly updating books and other reading materials to ensure they are contemporary, diverse and relevant to the needs, interests and experiences of learners
Encouraging learners to broaden their reading experience through a wide variety of genres
At silver level schools should detail how they are:
- Providing all learners with the opportunity to join the local public library for access to books, ebooks and audiobooks
Key Area 2.2.1 – Regular opportunities to read for pleasure
We expect Reading Schools to ensure all learners have regular time to read texts of their own choosing.
Schools should ensure that all learners have regular time to read texts of their own choosing in one of the below ways, or in another way that suits their setting:
Having regular reading at registration / transition times / other times as appropriate
Holding spontaneous DEAR time (Drop Everything and Read)
Including reading for pleasure time in home learning
Key Area 2.2.2 – Interdisciplinary book projects
We expect Reading Schools to offer exciting and engaging cross-curricular projects based around books that will inspire learners to read.
Schools should use book projects to inspire classes to read by completing the below mandatory action:
- Primary – ensuring every learner does one interdisciplinary project per year
Secondary – ensuring every learner in S1–3 does one project per year (this can be in English lessons)
Schools should extend their book projects by completing the below mandatory action:
Primary – providing an opportunity for classes to share their book projects with each other
Secondary – introducing one cross-curricular project involving other subject departments (could involve creative practitioners) per year
2.3 Learning, Teaching and Assessment
Key Area 2.3.1 – Modelling reading behaviours
We expect Reading Schools to give all learners the opportunity to hear a text aloud to widen their experience of stories.
At primary level schools should complete the below mandatory actions:
Schools to sustain Core level: class teachers to be routinely reading aloud to their class
Primary only – we expect schools to be inviting members of the community in to read, eg. mystery readers, public library staff, sportspeople, local figures, other role models etc.
At secondary level we recognise that it may be logistically difficult for staff to routinely read aloud to learners, but would like to see evidence of staff supporting learners to access the joy of reading and stories in one of the below ways, or in another way that suits their setting:
Teachers reading aloud to learners when possible
Sharing stories / reading aloud to learners online
Providing access to audiobooks, videos etc.
Holding special storytelling events
Key Area 2.3.2 – Staff meaningful conversations around books
We expect staff at Reading Schools to engage with all learners individually to support reading for pleasure.
Staff should ensure they know about learners' interests and have regular conversations with them about their personal reading in one of the below ways, or in another way that suits their setting:
Chatting with individual learners during whole-class reading time / other times as appropriate
Using interest-based activities and follow-up discussions, eg. book quizzes, book genre tasting sessions
Supporting individual learners with strategies for choosing a book they might like during library periods
Providing regular reading recommendations for individual learners in line with their interests
Key Area 2.3.3 – Creating learner social networks
We expect Reading Schools to facilitate learner social networks around reading to help them to discover their own reading identities.
Schools should allocate time for all learners to chat about books with each other in one of the below ways, or in another way that suits their setting:
Having a set time for peer discussion following ERIC time / other times as appropriate
Introducing book speed-dating
Playing Book Jenga to spark conversations around books
Pairing up learners to chat about what they are currently reading – this could include famous character duo cards to randomise pairings
Schools should give learner social networks more formal structures in one of the below ways, or in another way that suits their setting:
Offering interest-based clubs or groups
Creating groups designed for particular learners (eg. reluctant readers, ASN, EAL etc.)
Holding regular reading networking events for learners, eg. a reading café or reading quiz
Hosting online book club sessions – these could include learners from other schools
Providing book club boxes for learners to take home, including a shared notebook for comments / questions
Key Area 2.3.4 – Opportunities for learners to respond to what they’re reading
We expect Reading Schools to allow all learners to respond to what they’re reading in a variety of engaging ways that best suit their needs.
Schools should allow all learners to respond to what they’re reading in a variety of engaging ways that best suit their needs in one of the below ways, or in another way that suits their setting:
Reading journal or drawing
Blog / vlog / book trailer
Social media post
Book review / recommendation for school newspaper / website
Creative writing piece
Use of expressive arts, eg. drama, music, dance etc.
Enterprise project, eg. creating a school recipe book based on favourite books
Key Area 2.3.5 – Access to authors
At silver level, we expect schools to give all learners the opportunity to engage with authors (writers, illustrators or storytellers).
Schools should give all learners the opportunity to engage with authors (writers, illustrators or storytellers) in one of the below ways, or in another way that suits their setting:
Watching Authors Live
Arranging an author visit or residency
Attending / taking part in an online book festival or other book-related event eg. StoryCon
Hosting / watching online Scottish Children's Friendly Book Tour events
Taking part in an online book chat with an author / illustrator or storyteller
2.5 Family Learning
Key Area 2.5.1 – Raising the profile of reading with families
We expect Reading Schools to involve learners’ families in building their reading culture.
Schools should engage with learners’ families to promote reading for pleasure by completing the below three mandatory actions:
Providing access to books to take home / encouraging families to join their local library for access to books, ebooks and audiobooks
Communicating with families about the school’s reading projects and signposting to appropriate resources / setting fun reading challenges
Primary only – making the most of the P1 Bookbug Family Bag and Read, Write Count initiatives by inviting families into school for a gifting event / encouraging the use of the bags at home
Schools should offer further opportunities to promote reading for pleasure to families in one of the below ways, or in another way that suits their setting:
Holding special events, eg. an evening reading by the campfire
Involving families in reading celebrations
Inviting families to attend / take part in online author events, eg. Authors Live or virtual book festival
Primary only – Inviting families into school for P1 Bookbug Family Bag and Read Write Count gifting events
3.2 Raising Attainment and Achievement
Key Area 3.2.1 – Rewarding progress and recognising personal achievements
We expect Reading Schools to recognise and celebrate the reading achievements of all learners.
We expect schools to sustain core level by rewarding the progress of individual learners. This could include, for example:
Awarding small prizes such as bookmarks, stickers etc.
Awarding points through the school's individual rewards system
Having class / school awards to recognise effort, eg. 'reader of the week' or 'reader who has made the most recommendations' etc.
Schools should celebrate reading in wider groups or as a whole-school in one of the below ways, or in another way that suits their setting:
Holding a prize-giving assembly
Having a reading party
Inviting learners to a Book Bistro / other reading event
Gifting books, eg. for Christmas
Key Area 3.2.2 – Monitoring progress
Schools should track their progress by completing the below three mandatory actions:
Using the Reading Schools attitude surveys to assess and monitor learners’ interests, engagement and confidence within reading for pleasure
Monitoring the impact of your Reading Schools programme in ways most suited to your setting and activities
Taking part in Scottish Book Trust evaluation, which will be sent to you once your accreditation has been confirmed
Discover how Braes High School in Falkirk achieved their Silver accreditation.
Read the case study
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