An analysis of Berkhamsted School’s Library Reading Scheme has revealed exceptional results for Year 7 pupils this year.

The Year 7 boys and girls have enjoyed reading over 1,216 fiction books since the launch of ‘Bookopoly’ in September. Pupils work their way around a board based on the famous family game. They are set challenges relating to each tile which could be to read a book of a particular theme or a book published in 2019 for example.

 

Joy and Power of Reading

The ‘Bookopoly’ initiative links to ‘The Joy and Power of Reading’ ideology and aims to engage and motivate pupils in their literacy learning. 100% of Year 7 pupils participated in the game and together they read an additional 460 books in comparison to the previous year.

The analysis indicated that David Walliams was the most popular author. Nevertheless, pupils read books by a variety of 357 different authors in total.

Phenomenal engagement

Bethany Downing, on behalf of the library team said, “When we began thinking about a new reading scheme, our main aim was to get reluctant readers to engage.

“It is no secret that there can be a stigma around boys and reading so we considered this in our research and implementation. The scheme also needed to continue to encourage students to read a variety of authors/genres for their own enjoyment. ‘Bookopoly’ was designed to be interactive and fun with modest but achievable prizes as rewards.


“With this in mind, ‘Bookopoly’ has been the perfect fit in terms of engaging pupils and creating competition. This is a scheme that is not only excellent for avid readers through Berkhamsted Boys and Berkhamsted Girls, but for reluctant readers too. The level of engagement we’ve seen this year from our pupils has been phenomenal!”

Modern technology has been integral to the success of ‘Bookopoly’. The pupils’ learning platform ‘Firefly’ has enabled readers to review each book and give a star rating out of five. Pupils thrived while teachers were able to track progress and gain insights to report to parents.

Library scheme feedback

Feedback from pupils was broadly positive. They said:

“’Bookopoly’ was fun because I got to read books that I don’t usually read.”

“I liked exploring new genres of books.”

“I liked the feeling when you finish a book and you could fill in the ‘Bookopoly’ sheet. It felt like you had definitely accomplished something when you finished it.”


Overall the vast majority of Year 7 pupils felt ‘Bookopoly’ helped them to become more confident readers and encouraged them to explore new genres and authors.

The scheme has created a buzz around reading and it has inspired discussions and book recommendations.

The library team are now working with the English Department on the implementation of new reading schemes for Year 8 and further strategies to support Year 9 pupils with reading for pure enjoyment.

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