17 September 2013 at 12:15
We're delighted to announce the winning school in the prize draw held last term as part of our project to collect reviews of Malorie Blackman's latest teen novel, Noble Conflict.
The winner is The Helena Romanes School and Sixth Form Centre in Dunmow, Essex. One of the many reviews this school sent us was drawn at random from a heavy postbag of entries to win a free school visit during the current academic year from the Children's Laureate.
The school's Readathon organiser was Learning Zone Manager Mrs Turner, who did a great job of spreading enthusiasm about Noble Conflict within school, and also read the book herself during the summer holidays, as did her own daughter.We think Mrs Turner is a great ambassador for reading!
The Winning Review
The author of the winning review was Sarah (12), and here's her eloquent review:
"Full of apocalyptic action, this ominous book is an explosive thriller. Kaspar Wilding has joined the Guardians, an organisation dedicated to fighting insurrection. As always, Malorie Blackman's work flows effortlessly with flashbacks placed strategically throughout. As Kaspar fights the subversive terrorists, the reader also ventures on a journey exploring literary dynamite. In my opinion, the book is a beacon of success for all aspiring novelists."
If you haven't yet read Malorie Blackman's Noble Conflict, we bet Sarah's review will make you want to read it now! Find out all about the Children's Laureate on her official author website.
LIKE TO TAKE PART IN FUTURE PROJECTS LIKE THIS? Our friends in publishing often ask us to send out free review copies of extracts and samples of new books to schools who run Readathon sponsored reads. If you would like your school to be considered for one a future review project, please email your contact name, email address, school name and school postcode with "Readathon Review Club Application" in the subject line to the Readathon office.
Posted in authors | school visits | secondary school | No Comments
16 September 2013 at 09:36
St Joseph's Catholic College, a secondary school in Swindon, came up with a great idea to boost their recent Readathon: a "live reading exhibit" in the school library every lunchtime, featuring a member of staff reading aloud to anyone who came to listen.
"We thought this was a great way to raise awareness of the school's Readathon and to remind pupils every single day that it was happening," says Justine Daniels, Readathon's CEO. "I'm sure that lots of other schools will love to follow suit!"
This was just one of the College's many effective Readathon ideas. Their fabulous team effort resulted in its Year 7 students (just over 200 pupils) reading a staggering 1,442 books and raising £981.52 for Readathon - an impressive achievement in just one month, during which the College Library experienced an amazing three-fold increase in lending, compared to the same period in the previous year.
Assistant Principal, Adrian Stoten, said of the event:
“The aim of the programme was to encourage every student in Year 7 to read for pleasure. No limits were set on what students should read, we just wanted them to realise that reading could be fun. We wanted students to get into good habits, such as visiting the College Library and reflecting on their reading, as well as wanting to help young people facing hardship. Readathon has managed to achieve both these aims and smashed the targets that we had set ourselves.”
Jessica, a pupil in Year 7, described what the students had got out of the month:
“For the Readathon challenge we had to read at least one book (or as many as you could) in a month, so we could raise money for charities that help seriously ill children. It is a good way to raise money and a good way for kids to get into reading; it will help us use the language from the books we have been reading in our own writing. I have read four books and am really pleased so far!”
Congratulations to St Joseph's Catholic College for a fantastic Readathon!
Posted in Readathon sponsored read | different ways of raising money | No Comments
12 September 2013 at 11:04
When Key Stage 2 teacher David Hall of East Boldon Primary School tweeted a picture of himself proudly holding up his testimonial, we thought we should share it, to remind our wonderful Readathon organisers realise that they will be getting this small token of our appreciation in their official Readathon Reward Pack.
The Readathon Reward Pack
Every school that sends us sponsorship money and sponsorship cards will receive a Readathon Reward Pack containing:
- a Scholastic Books voucher worth 20% of the school's sponsorship money, for you to buy new books for your school library
- a certificate for you to display showing your sponsorship total
- a personalised testimonial certificate for the Readathon organiser
- 2 x £5 book tokens to reward YOUR most deserving pupils
- a registration card to order another pack for the next academic year
The 2 x £5 tokens are an added bonus for Readathons taking place in the academic year 2013-2014, thanks to the generosity of National Book Tokens.
We aim to despatch each Readathon Reward Pack within three weeks of receipt of a school's donation, so if you've waiting longer than that for yours, please let us know and we'll investigate!
If you'd like a Readathon Resource Pack but haven't ordered yours yet for this academic year, you can do so now - either register on this website or call us on 0845 606 1151.
Posted in Readathon sponsored read | primary school | England | No Comments
20 June 2013 at 10:29
Chailey School has just completed its ninth Readathon in a row, bringing its grand total of sponsorship over the years to nearly £2,500.
13 students in Year 7 read 85 books and raised over £325 between them with just two weeks of simply reading for pleasure.
The school gave prizes of boxes of chocolates for the pupil who read the most and the pupil who raised the most money, and all the students who took part were awarded official Readathon certificate.
"Chailey School is really pleased to be involved in this worthwhile annual event and are grateful to all the parents and community for their support," says Mrs Heather Duck, who has kindly organised the last seven of the school's Readathon.
Readathon is now an annual fixture in the Chailey School calendar - they've already ordered their free resource pack for Spring Term 2014!
Would you like to see your school's Readathon success story on this website? Just email your photos and brief details to Debbie at the Readathon office.
Posted in Readathon sponsored read | secondary school | school success stories | No Comments
18 June 2013 at 10:52
In an aeroplane, on the beach, in the bath and even up a tree… the girls in Upper 3 at Talboth Heath School in Bournemouth have been reading at every opportunity to help raise as much money as possible for Readathon.
"The 43 girls in the year group read over 300 books between them and raised nearly £900," reports the school's official Readathon organiser, Claire Boyington.
As always the English faculty recognized individual achievements by giving three kinds of award: best fundraising, most books read and most literary books read. Each prizewinner received a Waterstones token and a certificate. More information is available on their school website.
Talbot Heath is an independent girls' school in Bournemouth, Dorset for primary and secondary pupils.
Next academic year, Readathon will be providing two £5 book tokens to every school raising more than £50, thanks to the generosity of National Book Tokens.
Posted in secondary school | school success stories | independent schools | No Comments
07 June 2013 at 09:34
Next academic year (2013-2014), National Book Tokens will be generously supporting Readathon by providing two £5 book tokens to every school that raises more than £50 with a Readathon sponsored read.
These tokens will be in addition to the Scholastic Book Clubs voucher currently granted to each school worth 20% of its total donation, to be used to purchase new books for the school.
National Book Tokens to Reward Two Best Pupils
Each school's Readathon organiser should use these National Book tokens to reward the two pupils who are deemed to have made the best contribution to the school's Readathon sponsored read.
This doesn't necessarily mean the students who have raised the most money, as not all pupils have equal opportunities. Nor should the tokens be given automatically to the two children who have read the most books. For reluctant readers, reading a single book may be a greater achievement than reading 10 for an already avid reader. Readathon is not a competitive reading challenge - it is simply about reading for pleasure.
Instead teachers might reward the two pupils who:
- have the best attitude to reading
- have the most improved attitude to reading
- are the most helpful to the school's Readathon organiser
- are the most supportive to reluctant readers or pupils who find reading challenging
- share books with younger children to encourage them to read
- devise the most interesting or original theme for their Readathon reading list
It will be interesting to see what creative uses schools make of their National Book Tokens.
Many Benefits of National Book Tokens
"We are absolutely delighted to receive this generous sponsorship from National Book Tokens, which will give teachers and librarians everywhere the chance to say a special thank you to exceptional Readathon readers," says Justine Daniels, Readathon's Executive Director.
"We know that our Readathon organisers will already be aware of the universal appeal of National Book Tokens, not least because many of them already buy book tokens as Speech Day prizes.
"Just as we do, Readathon organisers will have fond memories of receiving National Book Tokens as children, recalling the pleasure, excitement and empowerment of being able to go into your local bookshop and choose a brand new book.
"Awarding National Book Tokens therefore seems the perfect way to reward Readathon's young reading stars. They will be very acceptable to pupils of all ages, in primary or secondary schools.
"We're thrilled also to have the opportunity to drive more children into high street booksellers. Independent bookshops play a significant part in encouraging children to love reading and so to accrue the many lifelong benefits that good reading habits bring to the individual - a message that is at the core of everything we do here at Readathon."
Posted in primary school | secondary school | books | Partner Organisations | booksellers | No Comments
19 March 2013 at 10:05
There can't be many schools in this country who didn't know that last Thursday was World Book Day. At Readathon we're enjoying catching up with how everyone celebrated reading for pleasure on that special day.
First up on our website to share their World Book Day news is Claremont Primary School in Blackpool, one of the hundreds of schools all over England, Scotland, Ireland and Wales who chose World Book Day to run a Readathon sponsored read. From the list of events sent to us by Mrs Barr, Claremont's Reading Leader, (pictured here as Mr Stink with her son as The Boy in a Dress) their day was action-packed, making reading fun for everyone!
"As well as taking part in our Readathon sponsored read, each child came dressed as a character from a book they liked, and they presented their character and their book in an assembly for book prizes. We also included a home reading challenge, peer reads, small group reads and quiet individual reads. Each year group made a reading tree, which parents then came in to see."
Of course, World Book Day is a fab time to start or finish your Readathon, although you can run a Readathon at any time of year. Just register on line and we'll send you your free resource pack.
What did your school do for World Book Day this year? Please send us your stories and photos and we'll display the best on our website!
Posted in Readathon sponsored read | primary school | World Book Day | England | No Comments
26 February 2013 at 10:08
Readathon is delighted to have been chosen as one of World Book Night's first ever institutional book givers.
World Book Day or World Book Night?
Not to be confused with World Book Day, which specifically targets schoolchildren, World Book Night is a relatively new event, designed to turn people of all ages who do not habitually read for pleasure into enthusiastic leisure readers. It aims at eroding the shocking statistic that 1 in 3 households reportedly do not contain a book.
Sponsored by the BBC, the book trade and reading agencies, the organisers of World Book Night produce 400,000 copies of special edition paperbacks of popular books, chosen to appeal to a diverse potential audience. (Click here to see this year's list of 20 titles.)
How We Were Chosen As A Book Giver
The books are distributed free of charge by volunteers. Designated "book givers", these are keen readers who apply for the task by choosing one of the 20 titles and explaining how they would distribute free copies to reluctant readers. Successful applicants collect 20 copies of their selected World Book Night title from their preferred local bookshop or library.
This year, for the first time, institutions have been allowed to apply to become book givers. Readathon's application was approved, and so on 23rd April, we will be distributing 20 copies of Robert Louis Stevenson's seminal pirate adventure Treasure Island to reluctant young readers whose attitude to reading could be transformed by the gift of a brand new book of their own.
We will connect with eligible young people via the nationwide network of schools who run our Readathon sponsored read. If you are a teacher or librarian with a pupil who you think would benefit from a free copy of Treasure Island, please contact us as soon as possible.
Posted in free books | World Book Night | 2 Comments »
25 January 2013 at 11:27
On the spot in Northern Ireland to collect Ballyclare Secondary School's fabulous Readathon cheque this term was Fionnuala Savage of CLIC Sargent.
At the end of last year Ballyclare Secondary School took part in its second sponsored Readathon Challenge. Pupils in Years 8, 9 and 10 were given the opportunity to read throughout all of their English classes for one week. All pupils were asked to raise as much money as possible for three worthy causes: CLIC Sargent, the UK’s leading children’s cancer charity, Roald Dahl Marvellous Children’s Charity, supporting children with neurological and blood disorders, and ReadWell, taking free books and storytellers into children's hospitals to make young patients' lives better.
"Congratulations to all the pupils in years 8,9 and 10 for your diligence in collecting sponsorship money from family and friends - well done to everyone inolved!" said Fionnuala, pictured here with Mrs Bell (Principal) with Ella Cooke and Peter Allen (Year 8 students).
Posted in school visits | CLIC Sargent | No Comments
21 December 2012 at 10:27
We've just had an unusual guest in the Readathon office: one with four legs and a wet nose!
Pippa the dog and her owner Deborah Neame, from the charity Dogs Helping Kids, came to demonstrate how reading to dogs can improve children’s literacy skills. It is especially helpful to reluctant readers and to young readers who lack confidence and and enthusiasm, but all children of all ages may benefit.
Half Labrador, half Dalmation, Pippa is a naturally calm and comforting presence, but even so, extensive training is required to turn a suitable dog into a safe, consistent and purposeful DHK dog.
The training includes teaching the dogs to treat books and readers with interest, respect and undivided attention, and to tolerate children’s behaviour. DHK dogs must also learn to reward the young reader at the end of each session, such as pressing a button on a device that speaks a message and doing amusing tricks.
“It was easy to find young volunteers to help with Pippa’s demonstration!” explains Justine, Readathon's director.
Two boys from nearby Amberley Parochial Primary School, an avid Readathon supporter, took it in turns to read to Pippa.
Looking on, their Headmaster Pete Godfrey commented: “I was very impressed with this demonstration and can see how effective this approach would be within a school environment.”
Supporting children’s reading in primary and secondary schools is just part of a much wider educational and therapeutic brief for DHK, which was founded in North Devon by Tracey Berridge. A qualified professional Canine Behaviour Counsellor. Tracy earned her Master's Postgraduate Degree in 'Companion Animal Behaviour Counselling'. Her thesis about the effects of using dogs in the school environment identified tremendous benefits of introducing dogs into schools. These include teaching children non-violence, empathy, respect, kindness, love, responsibility, friendship and trust. In the long term, DHK aims to have a dog in every school in the UK. In the meantime, it is busy raising awareness, fundraising and recruiting and training suitable dogs.
Posted in primary school | secondary school | Partner Organisations | No Comments