Last week, our students have been watching videos of their teachers arguing passionately for their favourite book, and voting for their favourites. The winner, English teacher Ms. Sadaani’s book Alanna, The First Adventure by Tamora Pierce, won with over 1,500 votes, deciding once and for all, what is the school’s favourite read.
‘The Battle of the Books’ formed part of a festival of activity in the school to celebrate World Book Day and the joy of reading, and follows a successful Readathon that raised over £1000 for Read for Good, which provides books for children in hospitals. The festival included workshops with graphic novel artists, poets and journalists.
Spoken Word artist Wanda Canton, whose spoken word and poetry workshop took place after school said it was “a privilege to spend time with such creative and engaged students. I was moved by their openness and support of each other, with a willingness to practice different speaking and writing exercises - from rhyming schemes to beatboxing!”
Fatoumata in year 7 who took part in her workshop said “The spoken word workshop was great, and really helped me with my writing.” and Liberty who also took part said she had “never written a poem before” and that she “felt really proud of myself”. Rian Hughes, graphic designer and illustrator, created a comic book with students from the school in his workshop and said it was “great to see what the kids came up with. Bacon’s College definitely have some future comic stars in the making!”
Bacon’s College believe encouraging a love of reading to be one of the most important things schools can do for their students, both as a means to higher attainment and an enriching and enjoyable activity. They are building a ‘reading community’ across their school – an environment in which staff and students are routinely reading, discussing and getting excited about books. The benefits of reading for young people are multiple, from increased academic attainment, to mental wellbeing and even an extended lifespan.
Mrs.Lloyd, librarian at the school said that the ‘Battle of the Books’ was a really important way for teachers to share their reading with students - “Being visible readers in school is the most valuable thing teachers can do to encourage a love of reading across the whole school community. I am thrilled to be part of ‘The Battle of the Books’ – it has built such a wonderful energy in the school around books and reading.” James Wilson, Headteacher at the school, echoed that sentiment, saying that “’The Battle of the Books’ has made reading visible across the school. It has been great over the past week to see everyone share their passion for books and reading and I’m confident we can build on this momentum to continue to encourage a love of reading for the whole school community.”
United Learning schools, including Bacon’s College, do not just focus on academic success but believe that there is more to an excellent education than solely exam grades. They therefore aim to develop character, compassion and service in their pupils. United Learning calls this Education with Character.