A community project funded by the Warwickshire County Council’s Smart Start Programme has made huge progress in enhancing the reading skills of both parents and children at a primary school in Bedworth.
‘Reading Rocks’ was set up by a group of teachers at St Michael’s Primary Academy in March 2017. The workshop was set up to promote parental engagement in reading and to make reading a more pleasurable experience for both parents and their children. It also aimed to inform parents of how phonics is taught and to highlight the many opportunities for learning that comes from a book.
32 families signed up to the workshop in week one. Week on week the number of families steadily increased with 42 families taking part by week five.
Feedback from the parents has been overwhelmingly positive:
“Reading Rocks is great. It has really encouraged my children to be more interested in reading and writing. It has also given mums new ideas. Thank you”
“My child really enjoyed reading a story using a story sack. Made it lots of fun and we laughed a lot. Thank you.”
“Myself (and my child) have really enjoyed ‘Reading Rocks’ and feel it has helped a lot getting him more interested in books and reading. We have also noticed a big improvement in his reading ability since we started.”
“Reading Rocks gave me great ideas for play, learning, reading and spending time together.”
Joanna Mortimer a reception class teacher who ran the ‘Reading Rocks’ programme along with other school teaching staff explains “’The project has had a substantial impact on the children who now show a lot more interest in reading and whose reading ability has improved. We have also successfully involved parents who have been given the opportunity to learn new ideas for activities at home. We would like to thank the Smart Start Coordinator and Team for the wonderful opportunities this project has provided to us as a school and for the wider community. ”
Monika Rozanski, Smart Start Programme Coordinator said “It is fantastic to see that one of our community grant funded projects ‘Reading Rocks’ has made such a positive impact on so many families in Bedworth in only 5 weeks. I hope that they will continue to enjoy the benefits of reading together which will enhance the development of their children and help give them the best start in life.”
For more information on the ‘Reading Rocks’ workshop or the Smart Start programme visit www.warwickshire.gov.uk/smartstart