During our assembly last Friday, we announced our very first group of Year 2 Junior Librarians for 2023!
Our Junior Librarians for this half of the term are: Harry and Iliana from 2AM, Christiana and Luca from 2JB and finally, George and Sofia from 2NS. They have the responsibility for the library environment and choose our Book of the Week. Watch this space for their forthcoming suggestions!
Book of the Week
Our Grimsdell Library is child centred and so our Book of the Week is always chosen by one of our Junior Librarians. Our current library display involves the application of an emoji to a particular book choice, so the Junior Librarians will add an emoji face to their book – I wonder if you will agree with their choice of emoji?
Our Books of the Week this week have been chosen by Christiana and Luca, who have both chosen a rhyming text with an element of repetition. I have already written this year about the importance of rhyme and repetition in the development of children’s developing literacy skills. Research into early literacy skills shows the importance of rhythm and rhyme. Developing literacy skills begin with listening and verbalising rather than reading and writing. That comes later. Children need a good grasp of phonics and the ability to discriminate sounds and rhyming patterns in an audible way in order to become confident readers. Stories written in rhyme and rhythm help our children develop auditory discrimination, listening skills, a rich and broad vocabulary, a love of words, concentration skills, phonemic awareness and poetry skills. This in turn stimulates imaginative, descriptive skills – an essential component of creative writing.
The repetition of a phrase/phrases encourages participation and engages children’s minds. It also encourages them to make predictions by successfully anticipating the next word or sentence. In addition, repetition is a powerful force in fiction – it encourages us to explore the author’s intent: repetition can emphasise setting, highlight a character trait or draw attention to a seemingly minor detail.
Christiana has recommends a book from the Tales from Acorn Wood series of stories, written by Julia Donaldson and illustrated by Axel Scheffler: Fox’s Socks.
Christiana’s reason for her choice: “This is such a great rhyming story which I know all Grimsdell children will enjoy reading. Will Mr Fox EVER find his socks?”
Mrs Harvey fully support Christiana’s choice. The book has an engaging rhyming story line which helps to create a pace and rhythm. Mr Fox has lost his socks! Where could they be? Along with a helpful little mouse, he starts looking in all the different places where they might be hiding around the house – in a trunk, under the mat, in a cupboard … Along the way, he finds all sorts of different items of clothing – but what he really wants is his socks!
Lifting the flaps encourages active participation in the story for younger readers. For older readers, such a device adds the skill of prediction – can they anticipate which word will be under the flap based on the previous rhyming word?
Luca recommends a firm Grimsdell favourite – Poo in the Zoo, written by Steve Smallman and illustrated by Ava Grey.
Luca’s reason for his choice: “This is a really funny story which I think everyone at Grimsdell will enjoy!”
Mrs Harvey would also recommend this humorous, rhyming tale. Little Bob McGrew is the zoo keeper, and it’s his job to clean up all the animals’ poos. It’s not his favourite job, for obvious reasons, but off he goes around the zoo, cleaning up everyone’s poo! It is an exhausting job but he sees an opportunity for change when he encounters some mysterious glowing poo …
The story has a good rhythm and is nicely paced, creating a flow to reading aloud. It is well illustrated and the pictures help to give an extra dimension to the story. In particular the deftly drawn facial expressions of the various animals and the zoo keeper will encourage your child to discuss and explore words that have similar meanings, such as surprised, shocked, astounded, amazed and astonished. It could even lead to the use of a thesaurus for older children.