Reflection on PP2 – Promoting Reading for Purpose and Pleasure - Year 6
During my time in year 6 I worked with two, part-time, class teachers neither of whom expressed a great passion or strong interest in reading to me. One of my class teachers considered herself a Maths specialist with the other not specifying a specialism or particular interest area. The Maths specialist however had a young son and directed me towards several texts that he had enjoyed which I was able to incorporate into the year 6 English lessons such as 'the true story of the three little pigs' by John Scieszka. As well as the one mentioned previously I was also introduced to a modern retelling of 'Romeo and Juliet' by Michael Cox. This text was used during guided reading sessions and offered a modern British slant on Shakespeare's iconic story. The modern setting on a Nottingham housing estate made the book far more accessible to the children than the original text itself.
This teacher had built up an extensive library of children's literature, and newspapers, outside the classroom and had created imaginative displays and reading areas to engage the children in reading. The Shakespearean corner with working quill pens and a variety of Tudor themed literature was an excellent way to excite the children about reading in this area. Children appeared to use outside library regularly and several of them took responsibility for ensuring the library areas were organised and well stocked. Again on the Shakespearean theme the pupils were due to visit Stratford-upon-Avon latter in the term and had dressed up as Tudors writing imaginative poems based on the Macbeth Witches.
The Tudor and Shakespearean themed wall displays, as mentioned before, were exciting and interactive which engaged the children in the content of the literature on display. The extensive year 6 library, directly outside, also suggested reading was a high priority for their class teachers. As well as the year 6 library their was also an extensive whole school library in the main building which several members of the class helped organise and restock emphasising the schools commitment to reading. During my time at the school there was also a book fair run by the staff which encouraged communication between parents, pupils and their teachers on the topic of reading.
After reading 'the true story of the three little pigs' I asked the children to create a radio report about the events highlighted and many of them used imaginative accents (i.e. American Gangster) and styles of story telling which really brought the book to life. Also during a guided reading session with some of the HA pupils in the class I asked them to add as much expression as they could to the modern 'Romeo and Juliet' story. This led to some interesting and often hilarious English 'street' accents from the children to reflect the colloquial language used throughout the text.