World Book Night

I was lucky enough to be selected as a World Book Night Giver this year.

My application was to balance all the giveaways we have in place for students in Keystage 3 and 4 – Booked Up (RIP), World Book Day etc. This was my chance to target Post 16 and I wrote…


“We are all aware of the serious drop off in reading that take place during the later teenage years, and anything that counters this is worth doing.  I love Bryson’s writing style which is very approachable.”


So why do I think it is so important to encourage readers in this age group?


It is really easy to fall out of the reading habit during the busy and exciting time during the later teenage years. We can all remember the new opportunities – learning to drive and the freedom of going where you want to with friends, buying your first (legal) drink when you turn 18, the opposite sex, first love and heartbreak.

On top of this heady mix is the pressure of studying, exams, and part time work. When you are struggling with all this, and often more, you can always fall back onto a book for support. From outright escapism (and don’t we all need that from time to time), to walking in someone else’s shoes, who are going through similar experiences or experiencing something completely different!

Books and reading are an important part of the rich tapestry of life, and one that often wanes once you ‘can’ read, and no longer ‘have to read’. It’s difficult to compete with all those distractions – but it is worth diving into a good book once in a while- as they could take you anywhere!


The Book I chose was “Notes from a Small Island” by Bill Bryson – simply because it made me laugh out loud. I could relate to his experiences when he wrote about places I too had visited, and I was interested in reading about places I hadn’t been too yet.





Giving the books turned out to be easier than I thought… I delved into the SixthForm study centre during lunch and went around chatting to students about their reading habits. To those who considered themselves to be a reluctant readers I explained about World Book Night and talked about “Notes from a Small Island”. Only three students refused to accept a book. And many avid readers were a bit miffed that I wouldn’t give them a book! I kept a few books back to reward sixthformers who actively supported our DEAR initiative within their tutor groups but who wasn’t an avid reader themselves- and these were well recieved too.


So I’ve sent my fleglings out into the big bad world – I wonder where they will travel (and who will the books take with them on their journey?)

Booked Up 2011

Tommorrow the MRC begins to hand out the Booked Up books to all year 7 based upon their choices.


We wait until now to help make sure they are collected and it’s great giving them out this side of Christmas. Ho ho ho!

During the last week of term the DEAR Homepage focusses on the Booked Up books, with activites realated to the individual books.

Booked Up 2011 Titles Announced

New Booked Up titles revealed…

The 17 book titles that will be on offer to all Year 7 pupils in England from September 2011 are now online at Booked Up, which is celebrating its fifth year.

The programme will deliver 650,000 free books from a list that includes winners of the Waterstone’s Children’s Book Prize and the Blue Peter Book Award.

Our Year 7 students will again be able to choose which book they want during the Term 2.

The 2011 Booked Up book list:
* Pumpkin Grumpkin by John Agard and Grace Nichols
* The Name of This Book is Secret by Pseudonymous Bosch                                                                                                                                               * Artichoke Hearts by Sita Brahmachari                                                                                                                                                                                 * How to Train Your Dragon by Cressida Cowell
* The Ghost Box by Catherine Fisher
* The Kick Off by Dan Freedman
* Mortlock by Jon Mayhew     
* Why is Snot Green? by Glenn Murphy
* Big Nate – The Boy with the Biggest Head in the World by Lincoln Peirce
* Dead Man’s Cove by Lauren St John
* Frankie Foster: Fizzy Pop by Jean Ure
* The Truth About Leo by David Yelland
* Boffin Boy and the Wizard of Edo by David Orme and Peter Richardson
* Little Bo Peep has Knickers That Bleep by Laurence Anholt & Arthur Robins
* The Dragon Machine by Helen Ward and Wayne Anderson
* You Choose by Pippa Goodhart and Nick Sharratt                                                                                                                                                               * Don’t You Dare, Dragon! by Annie Kubler

2011 Booked Up books. FREE to all Year 7’s in term 2

Keep your eye peeled for further information later in the year on how to claim your free book.