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Resources Blog » January 2016RSS Feed RSS

The SLA Resources Blog is designed to highlight new resources which we at the SLA think may be of interest to school librarians and to others working in related fields. The blog is available at and can also be read via an RSS feed at

Older blog posts are still available, though archived, on the website, but please check the date at the top of the post to make sure the offer or information is likely to be valid.

Browns are Bringing Literacy Resources to You!

Feedback from customers has found the decline in showrooms, reduced resources and time restraints a challenge for literacy co-ordinators sourcing educational content for students.

Browns Books for Students have endeavoured to find a solution to provide as many physical books as possible, including our handpicked collections and newly published titles directly to our customers.

Browns Books for Students have created a Mobile Educational Book Showroom in a double decker bus! Stocked with over 4000 books for the educational sectors.

Our Book Bus is an Alexander ALX400 low-floor Double Decker with a 2002 Dennis Trident 2 chassis that has been completely refurbished and customised to our unique requirements. Measuring 10.5metres long, 2.55metres wide and 4.4metres tall and fitted with an external awning, creating an amazing 50 sq. metre mobile experience.

The lower level of the bus is fitted with two electronic meeting spaces, with live terminals to research titles or receive demonstrations on our online ordering platform or our eBook platform, VLeBooks.

The top deck has been transformed into a mobile showroom with 17 bespoke shelves displaying over 4000 physical books.  We also have 8 electronic displays providing additional information on the content and educational resources.

With mobile stock scanners, users can enjoy browsing the books and scan titles to create selections. Utilise the ordering terminals to review selections and place orders, which are available to be dispatched the same day, or serviced to your bespoke requirements and arrive shelf ready for your library.


Getting Everyone Involved!

Why not have students or library representatives on our Book Bus to put together selections that both themselves and their peers consider of interest; and would like to see in their library?

We strongly believe that if patrons of their libraries feel connected and involved in selecting the content for the libraries, they will utilise the library service even more.

Anyone can use a stock scanner to create their selections for you to review and decide whether to purchase.

On board collections will provide Department Heads and Literacy co-ordinators an effective resource to compare and review teaching resources in one place. No need to see multiple reps, no travel, or biased heavy selling.


Bringing Literacy Resources to You!

We believe that accessibility to books is crucial and our Book Bus will give the opportunity not only to major cities, but to assist rural communities and educational establishments who are not fortunate to have a static bookstore/showroom.

Our Book Bus will give access to content on site, creating an exciting and unique experience whereby everyone can get involved in viewing titles and adding new stock into schools and community libraries.


For more information:

THE BOOK BUS Browns Books for Students, 22-28 George Street, Hull HU1 3AP, Marketing Manager: Nic Hales Tel 01482 384660 - Email nic.hales[at] -

Read Write Inc Open Days

On 19 March a selection of 'Model Schools' in the UK are inviting headteachers and literacy leads to attend an open day to see the Read Write Inc. education programme in practice. Attendees can find out how the programme, published by Oxford University Press, can improve literacy and help to decrease the 'word gap' between children from disadvantaged backgrounds and their more affluent peers.  


The open day will take place on Monday 19 March in Caerphilly, Cornwall, Derby, Norfolk, Romford, Wokingham, Birmingham and East Sussex at 'Model Schools' for Read Write Inc., and will be open to all headteachers and literacy leads in the local area. At the open day visitors can expect to find out how the Read Write Inc. programme is implemented in their schools and see the benefits of the programme and it is improving literacy. During the day, visitors will be able to observe lessons, meet other schools in the area, get advice on how to implement the programme and see the positive impact on behaviour across the school. 


One of the highlight factors of Read Write Inc. schools is that they are talk-a-lot schools where speaking and listening skills are developed through partner work. By developing children’s vocabulary, Read Write Inchelps to address problems associated with the ‘word gap’, recently highlighted by the government’s Department for Education single departmental plan. 


The ‘word gap’ has been identified in children from disadvantaged backgrounds, who by the age of 3 are on average almost a full year and a half behind their more affluent peers in language development. In the report the DoE make recommendations on how to eliminate the 'word gap' through education in order to improve social mobility and equality of opportunity, the Read Write Inc. programme is in line with this.


 “Our Model Schools demonstrate an inspirational passion and excitement for teaching. Their attention to detail and focus on continuous professional development
marks them out and is the key to their success in getting every child to read by 6. No child should get left behind and with the right teaching and assessments we can ensure

every child is understood and the gaps in their knowledge identified and addressed.”

Ruth Miskin, Creator of Read Write Inc.


For more information on which schools are taking part and to book a place at one of the schools teachers can visit this webpage:


Or for booking enquiries please email oxfordprimaryevents[at]  



For more information, images or to speak to one of the experts at OUP Education please contact publicist: Laura Smythe m: 07881555530 or email: laurasmythecontact[at]


Oxford University Press, Great Clarendon Street, Oxford OX2 6DP t: 01865 354579 Twitter: [at]OUPPrimary Facebook: [at]oxfordeducationuk

CILIP ILG Resource Sheets

ILG ResourcesThe CILIP Information Literacy Group is delighted to announce the launch of a range of resource sheets, in support of the TeenTech initiative. Pupils taking part in the competition can use these ten resource sheets to help them with the research process and developing their innovations.

The sheets cover research skills and data collection, provide guidance on how to protect ideas, and suggest some sources that teams could use to locate information.  The resources have been produced under a Creative Commons license, which means that they are available to all schools to download from this website and to use with their own pupils to help support the delivery of any topic or activity that requires information literacy skills.

The resources have been produced by a team of school and HE librarians led by Rebecca Jones, Schools Representative for the CILIP IL Group:

  • Rebecca Jones, Learning Enrichment & Support Co-ordinator, Malvern St James, Malvern
  • Darrly Toerien, Head of Library & Information Services, Oakham School, Rutland
  • Darren Flynn, Information Literacy Lead, Dixons Allerton Academy, Bradford
  • Sarah Pavey, Independent trainer and consultant to school libraries
  • Caroline Roche, School Librarian, Eltham College
  • Carol Webb, Forest Hill School, London
  • Chris Morrison, University of Kent, Copyright and Licensing Compliance Officer

The team are very excited about the final resources, and are hoping to get some feedback from schools so that they can continue to improve this material for both teachers and pupils.

TeenTech runs lively events with a supporting awards scheme to help young teenagers see the wide range of career possibilities in Science, Engineering and Technology.  An award-winning, industry-led initiative, TeenTech was founded in 2008 by Maggie Philbin and Chris Dodson to help the “X Factor” generation understand their true potential and the real opportunities available in the contemporary STEM workplace.

The CILIP Information Literacy Group also sponsors TeenTech's Research and Information Literacy Award, and  the team are interested to see how the resources are going to be used by participating school pupils, as evidenced in their product logs. The team also hope to be involved in some of TeenTech's innovation and festival days, at which they will continue to promote IL skills and develop the knowledge of both pupils and teachers.

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Free Competitions

NLT Comp 2016Two free competitions the National Literacy Trust is currently running for schools. Both competitions close on 18 March.

Spring Reading Adventure (for KS1 and lower KS2) - This competition encourages pupil to read more for enjoyment, with 30 copies of Frankie’s Magic Football or Magic Animal Friends on offer for the first 500 schools to register (15,000 copies in total). Pupils are challenged to record the progress they make reading either book in special log books and every 10 minutes they read takes them a step closer to the competition goal of 10 hours of reading in total.

Timmy Failure: Crack the Case (for KS2) - In this unique writing competition, pupils are challenged to write and illustrate their own detective stories using characters and inspiration from the popular Timmy Failure books. Schools that register will have access to a wide range of supporting materials, including cross-curricular resources and bookmarks for the first 500 schools.
To register or just find out more check out the website.


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HP Book Night 2016

HP NightHARRY POTTER BOOK NIGHT will now be celebrated annually and returns on Thursday February 4th 2016 as HARRY POTTER BOOK NIGHT: A NIGHT OF SPELLS...  For 2016, the theme of the celebrations will be spells and their place at the heart of the unparallelled HARRY POTTER stories.

The NEW event kit is packed full of activities and inspiration for hosting an utterly spellbinding event - from creating a potions corner to designing your own magical spells to testing your knowledge of spells in HARRY POTTER with the Ultimate Spellathon trivia challenge! There are also some of the favourite activities from last year, including the Sorting Hat, but there is also a host of NEW ideas to inspire you to organise even bigger and better celebrations. As before, the event kit is free and easy-to-download from  the website and will help those looking to host a HARRY POTTER BOOK NIGHT event in a school, library, bookshop or community setting - or even as the ultimate sleepover party! NEW FOR 2016 - This year, hosts can publicise their HARRY POTTER BOOK NIGHT events by uploading the event details on the interactive map at

On January 14th, there will be the launch of an online poll at to decide the nation’s favourite HARRY POTTER spell. Spread the word and be sure to register your own vote!

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Offer extended

The Week JnrNew weekly current affairs magazine for 8-14 years olds, The Week Junior, has launched with fantastic feedback from teachers across the UK. Brought to you by Britain’s bestselling weekly news magazine, The Week, it’s designed to help pupils explore and make sense of the world around them.

Covering news about science & technology, animals, sports, environment, the arts, film and computing, The Week Junior offers lots of ways to enhance curriculum learning in lesson time and out of the classroom, across all subject areas.

For a limited time, teachers registering on the website for The Week Junior programme will receive the extended offer of five copies a week free for eight weeks. These are being snapped up quickly and we encourage schools to sign up to get their sample copies.

Librarians and teachers will also have access to the downloadable resources offering inspirational fuss-free ideas to use the magazine with their pupils, as well as competition entry forms with fantastic prizes up for grabs for pupils and their schools. The ‘Great Ideas’ resource is cross-curricular with strong links to English & Literacy, PSHE, Citizenship, Science, Technology & Geography.

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