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Teachers as Readers

I was delighted to be invited to the Teachers as Readers: Building Communities of Readers project dissemination event this week.  The purpose of this event was to share some key findings from the research and development project and to reflect on the implications of the work.

The project was funded by the Esmée Fairbairn Foundation and United Kingdom Literacy Association (UKLA) and involved 5 local authorities in England.  The project focussed on promoting children's independent reading for pleasure in the primary school by developing teachers'

  • Knowledge of children's literature
  • Confidence and skilful use of children's literature in the classroom
  • Relationships with parents, carers, librarians and families
  • Practice as Reading teachers i.e. teachers who read and readers who teach.

The event was also used to launch the new publication Building Communities of Readers (Cremin, Mottram, Collins and Powell, Primary National Strategy/UKLA 2008.  ISBN 978 1897638 46 0).  This outlines the structure and principles of the project, giving guidance about how school literacy consultants and Local Authority consultants can carry out similar projects.  It includes surveys, questionnaires and detailed advice for running sessions with teachers and for developing classroom practice. 

There were lots of very positive messages about the value of reading for pleasure and the results on attainment for the children.  This sort of research can only strengthen our case in advocating the provision of good school libraries and resources, for reading for purpose and pleasure.  The full report upon which this is based will be available from the UKLA website - http://www.ukla.org/ - in December. 

The event was held at the Centre for Literacy in Primary Education (CLPE) which is an educational centre for schools and teachers, parents, teaching assistants and other educators. CLPE has a national and international reputation for its work in the fields of language, literacy and assessment.   It was founded in 1972 as The Centre for Language in Primary Education and became an independent charitable trust in 2002, changing its name to The Centre for Literacy in Primary Education. CLPE is dedicated to the provision of high quality services and training courses and consultancy for schools and teachers, parents, teaching assistants and other educators. CLPE is celebrated for its innovative classroom-based research and development, and for its publications, do explore their website - www.clpe.co.uk/index.html  

Tricia Adams 

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