I’m still fizzing from my visit yesterday to Alexandra Park School – my second as their Patron of Reading.
The first visit back in December as a Book Doctor was deliberately low-key, to help me find my way into the role. This…
…was much bigger.
In two sessions I spoke to the whole of the school’s Years 7 and 8 – introducing myself, taking questions, talking about how I became a reader, and putting forward my next idea: a Free Readers Manifesto.
What I would like to develop is a way of encouraging students to read by thinking about the differences between reading you have to do for school and reading you do for yourself – which is what I mean by Free Reading.
APS students can – and did! – give me comments, questions and suggestions about how this manifesto could end up – because it’s not finished. When it’s done I would like it to be theirs as much as mine – something we’ve come up with together. For now, however, the draft version I gave them to consider and work on with me looks like this…
The Free Readers Manifesto – First Draft
1. We are free to read whatever we want.
2. We are free to skip bits we find badly written or boring.
3. We are free to give up on reading that does not give us what we want, and find other reading that does.
4. As Free Readers we will not be measured, tested or questioned on our reading – unless we want to be.
How can this manifesto be developed and improved? I can hardly wait to find out. Meanwhile, my thanks and best wishes to Alexandra Park School’s staff and students for what was another thrilling and inspiring visit.
Being a Patron of Reading is brilliant. 😀