New online reading-group scheme to launch in 2021 Autumn term :: NEWS
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New online reading-group scheme to launch in 2021 Autumn term

21 July 2021 Share

Bringing together young UK readers to discuss British YA novels

Reading4Normal Book Club is an online reading-group scheme that aims to bring together young readers from different parts of the UK to discuss recent British young adult (YA) novels, and to reflect on their own everyday lives and experiences.  

This scheme recognises the value of reading for teens who have struggled with isolation and disruption during the Covid pandemic. It provides the structure and space for them to reflect on their own routines, relationships, and environments through the lens of fiction. It also offers a valuable way for keen readers to make connections with other individuals at a similar life stage across the UK.  

Six schools will be invited to take part: each will have a dedicated Schools Lead who will run the book groups and who will identify a total of six readers from Year 9, Year 10 and Year 12. Readers will read the novels individually, and then discuss them together in Zoom meetings. The books will be recent YA novels by British authors, which offer fictional representations of a diverse and contemporary Britain. 

The project will start with a training session for Schools Leads at the beginning of the 2021 autumn term and then follow a programme of five Zoom book club sessions (November, January, March, April, June). Schools will be provided with free copies of the YA novels and will also be invited to a final Reading4Normal event with a major YA author in July 2022. 

The Schools’ activities will be supported by training materials and expert advice from the project leader, Dr Alison Waller (University of Roehampton) and project assistant, Emily Corbett. There will also be a website and social media programme that will encourage engagement with Reading4Normal amongst young people nationally.

To take part, get in touch with a.waller@roehampton.ac.uk.