Reflections on Reading

reflections on reading

PrintAccelerated Reader is a powerful tool for monitoring and managing independent reading practice while promoting reading for pleasure. More here.

I recently was asked to write an recent article for the recent Accelerated Readers report for “What Kids Are Reading”.  I wrote my Reflections on Reading. 

Click here for a list of my books quizzed on the Accelerate Reader scheme.

“The school was busy last autumn incorporating Accelerated Reader into the Library and English department. It is going really well. Reading figures have trebled in one term and you will be pleased to know that you are top of the favourite author and titles lists. ” Northwood Prep School

Fairtrade Fortnight 2016

The 2016 Fairtrade Fortnight runs from February 29th to March 13th. It is an awesome opportunity to explore ideas about treating people fairly when we trade with them.

In 2010 I went to Ghana to research a children’s book about fair trade in chocolate and football players. I met the cocoa bean farmers, their children, young footballers and children at Akomodan School.

The trip had a huge impact on how I choose to shop. I had no idea how buying fair trade products – and treating trading partners properly – could transform the lives not just of today’s farmers, but their descendants in the decades to come.

I created lots of materials about fair trade while researching and writing the book, helped by Divine Chocolate and by a practicisng KS2 teacher. You can access them here.

Free materials include:

  • the first chapter of my Off Side book, featuring the football-playing son of cocoa bean farmers
  • an interview with me about my visit to Ghana
  • the story of how the Ghanaian boy I based my character on left Ghana – ethically! – to play for Manchester City.

Also, you can access a free school resources pack about fair trade in chocolate and football. It’s pretty comprehensive, thanks to the help I had from others.

I hope this is useful. Please get in touch via this website if you want more information.


Five school resources for the Six Nations rugby

The Six Nations rugby tournament begins on 6th February. Here are five literacy resources that you can use to encourage reading for pleasure through children’s interest in the tournament.

One   A live Six Nations story by Tom Palmer, featuring the events of the tournament as it unfolds. One chapter a week. Published on Monday mornings by the RFU:

Two   A list of ten great rugby reads for children, published on the Guardian website:

english poster

Three   Several free rugby reading posters in English and Welsh.

Four   A toolkit of literacy ideas for the classroom, library and PE hall.

Five   A letter to send home with advice on how parents can support rugby fans’ reading through their love of the game. Versions for fans of several nations.

There are more literacy resources available here:

Thanks for reading. Enjoy the Six Nations!