As some of you know last term I started reading regularly to two classes of 5 and 6 year olds at M and J’s school – reading great stories just for fun, to show them that learning to read isn’t all about phonics and literacy but also about exploring, delighting and laughing.
The sessions went better than I could have hoped for and this term I’m been asked back but on slightly different terms – I’m now being given an hour every Friday afternoon to read and do book related play with the kids. Can you imagine how happy this makes me ?
Today I have my first session; 30 kids (a mixture of 5,6 and 7 year olds) and our theme is books and libraries.
I’ll be starting the session with Otto the Book Bear by Katie Cleminson and Library Lion by Michelle Knudsen and Kevin Hawkes and I shall round it off with Delilah Darling is in the Library by Jeanne Willis and Rosie Reeve and Dog Loves Books by Louise Yates.
In between the two reading sessions we’re going to make our own pocket libraries.
To do this the kids will first decorate some blank matchboxes with bits and pieces (we’ll be using regular matchboxes rather than craft ones as we didn’t have time to order them). Then the kids will be taking a few of the mini books I’ve prepared (folded card with a small piece of paper stapled inside) and choosing frontcovers for their books from a wide selection I’ve cut out from publishers catalogues. They’ll glue their covers to the front of their books and once they’ve got 3 or 4 they’ll put them inside their matchbox and have their very own pocket library.
If there’s spare time, or the kids just want something else to do, they’ll be able to make their own mini versions of the bookshelf wallpaper M, J and I made here.
Kids will be offered a shelf of their own to paint and encouraged to come up with book titles for the books on their shelf. There will be plenty of book characters to colour in, cut out and eventually stick on to their shelves. To start with we’ll be using Gruffalo, Octonauts, Eric Carle and Charlie and Lola colouring-in sheets.
If you don’t know the books I’ll be reading here are some reviews to give you a flavour of them:
Before I read Library Lion I shall show the kids this photo of the New York Public Library:
And then ask them if they recognise this statue (which is near Birmingham Central Library ie the main library in our city):
Hopefully it will be the start of making our own stories up about this Sphinx-like Guardian and the secrets she might be protecting!
I’ve probably planned far too much for the time allotted. I’m both nervous and very, very excited… Wish me luck with the session!