Reading for Pleasure

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Reading for Pleasure at Lakeside Primary Academy

At Lakeside Primary Academy we highly value the importance of reading for pleasure

Reading for pleasure is any reading that is done for enjoyment. Whilst we know that reading has huge educational benefits, we believe that the benefits of reading for pleasure go far beyond this and stretch throughout a child's life.

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Reading for pleasure is not just seen as a classroom based activity, it is a whole-school daily activity. We enjoy books at Breakfast Club, in our Forest School and at lunchtimes and playtimes. We are a reading school and reading for pleasure is actively encouraged throughout the school day where possible.

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How do we promote Reading for Pleasure?


Designated Reading Areas These are in each classroom, with organised and age-appropriate texts. Books are organised and refreshed to keep children interested. We have bright, engaging and inviting reading areas throughout school, with books organised in to fiction, non-fiction, subject and genre to make it easy for children to use independently. We have books based around themes in the halls and along corridors, which include whole-school reading celebrations - such as our recent work on The Windrush. We encourage children to browse the books throughout school based on their interests to select books to read for pleasure.

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    • Story Time   Throughout school we devote the last half an hour of the day to reading our class book. We also use one of these daily sessions to devote to a whole-class "Book Talk" - this is where the teacher will discuss different books and encouragement engagement, possibly looking at new texts within the classroom, or inviting a child to share a book they have loved. The idea of the Book Talk session is to get children excited about and interested in new books, to spark an interest. Within classrooms, children have special areas devoted to Reading for Pleasure - in some rooms there are baskets with "Recommended Reads" and in others there are book reviews and class wish lists, these are all designed to encourage children to pick up a book and read for pleasure.books we have read.png


Story Sacks, Author Visits and Book Clubs We have story sack sessions for parents, grandparents and children to enjoy a book alongside puppets and props. This is a great opportunity in providing children with a fun way to support their children at home with reading and communication skills. We have also had authors visit, including local author Phil Sheppard. We have taken part in the Doncaster Storytelling Festival and participated in a Harry Potter draw- a -long (which led to many children asking to read Harry Potter!) We have also run weekly Book Clubs for children through our partnership with Doncaster Stories. During this session we shared and discussed a new book, then each week the children got to take their new book home to enjoy.

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Doncaster Stories Through our partnership with Doncaster Stories, all our Year 6 children received a free copy of Marcus Rashford's book. This was during Sports week which tied in well - there were many children in the playground with their heads buried in his book which was wonderful to see! We are always looking for the best ways to engage our reluctant readers with reading and have found success using their role models and sports stars.

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We hold many whole-school reading events throughout the year, including:

World Book Week - We are very clear at Lakeside that reading for pleasure is an all year round affair, but we do come together as a school during World Book Week to engage in extra reading. Part of this promotion is sharing the same text throughout school. This year we celebrated The Windrush with every year group reading "Coming To England" by Floella Benjamin. This book inspired children of all ages and led on to many children seeking out other texts on this topic. We based a whole-school display around the book to further encourage engagement, with writing and art work linked to the story. We were delighted that Baroness Floella Benjamin herself commented on our display (and re-tweeted it!)

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Whole-School Reading Challenges We often take part in whole-school challenges to help spark an interest in Reading for Pleasure. An example of this was our Reading Miles Challenge where children were encouraged to read for pleasure at home and complete a Reading Miles booklet. Children who completed the "miles" were rewarded with certificates and a trophy.


Reading Buddies Our children love getting together with each other to share books, which we actively encourage. Books are out at playtime and also breakfast club where older children often share a book with a younger child - we have found this is a great way to build an interest in reading. We are also lucky to have our very own school therapy dog, Archie. We use Archie to engage children of all ages in reading for pleasure. 

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Whole-School reading events  Throughout the year we have special occasions dedicated for children to enjoy reading together in a relaxed and cosy environment. This takes on many guises throughout the year and has included Easter and Christmas themed events and a Reading Picnic on the field in the Summer. We always involve snacks and comfort, because nothing beats a good book alongside a biscuit (and even better if you are in your cosy PJs!) At Christmas we have a visit from Father Christmas who hands out new books for the children to take home and enjoy.


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Local Library links - we are lucky that we have Doncaster library within walking distance of our school. We have had visits from librarians to our school promote the library and we have made sure every year group has visited and been signed up with a library card. This is now something we comntinue annually for our Year 2s to ensure every child is able to visit independently on weekends.

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Travelling Book Fair We have Boggledy Book Fair visit three times a year, which is a fantastic opportunity for children to buy a new book for as little as £1. We have been lucky to gain many free books for the school as a result of fantastic sales. We use this opportunity to invite parents in to school for a Reading Cafe morning - to browse the books and also enjoy a book (and a biscuit or two) with their child. This has always been a very popular event with great feedback and engagement from parents.



Subscription to First News  We advocate reading in all forms - books, magazines, newspapers, comics and also encourage reading stories online. We aim to provide a wide variety of texts for children to enjoy. We also encourage our children to read about world news in a safe and child friendly way and so subscribe to First News.

Bilingual Books  We are a multicultural school and the books we offer reflect this. We have books (including audio books) of a wide range of languages. This is so important for engaging our children who are new to English and making them feel welcome and included. We also seek to have books that reflect main characters of different races and religions. It is key for our children to see themsleves reflected in the characters of books they are reading and so we have made sure we have such texts for our children to enjoy.

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We truly believe in the value of reading for pleasure at Lakeside, and above all, our teaching staff know the value of getting "lost in a good book". We are always striving to pass on our love of reading to our children, as nothing brings us greater pleasure than witnessing our children fall in love with reading. 



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Sandy Lane, Doncaster, DN4 5ES

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