Our Junior Librarians for the first half of the Summer Term are: Aya and Allegra from 2JB, Poppy and Zachary from 2NS and finally, Ellie and Sahir from 2AM. 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
This week, two of our new Junior Librarians have selected two very different choices …
Firstly, Allegra has chosen the Rainbow Magic series. Her particular favourite is Pet Parade by Daisy Meadows
Allegra’s reason for her choice:
“I think I have read the whole of this series! I like stories about fairies and this book is full of magical fairies.”
We hope you agree! We have a variety of Rainbow Magic stories in our library. We have the Beginner Reader collection, whose text and illustration is suitable for our Early Years and Year 1 children (and beyond!) to more lengthy chapter books aimed at Year 2 children.
Mrs Harvey would also support Allegra’s choice. The Rainbow Magic books are a huge hit with many of our Grimsdell readers. Readers enjoy their themes of friendship, problem-solving and – of course – magic! The first point in encouraging children to read and to foster a love of reading, is to give them choice and ownership over their reading materials. Freedom to choose is the stimulus for creating lifelong readers. The repetitive story lines of the books are often exasperating for adults but this repetition is an important learning tool for children – it teaches them skill of prediction, which they can then apply to other texts they read.
Mrs Harvey also recommends incorporating early chapter books into your child’s reading repertoire. Early chapter books are simple, short, illustrated fiction. They are written and designed to help newly independent readers build their reading stamina, strengthen their confidence in book selection and develop a sense of themselves as readers.
As a child transitions from a beginning reader who needs to sound out each word to a more advanced reader who is starting to decode faster and follow longer, more complicated stories, early chapter books often tend to become the reading material of choice when a child is around the ages of 7 or 8. These stories can be read independently but they should also be shared, so that your child is encouraged to think about the plot/character and to make predictions about what might occur in the following chapters. This helps to build a sense of anticipation.
Variety is key in establishing a lifelong reader and Picture Books still have a vital role to play in the development of Key Stage 1 readers. Research shows that Picture Books has a direct and positive impact on children’s literacy. Children who are given opportunities to read and respond to Picture Books throughout their primary years learn about sophisticated narrative structure, plot and character development in an accessible way. A focus on reading illustration helps to develop children’s deeper comprehension skills, allowing them additional opportunities to infer, deduce, think critically and empathise.
Aya recommends a book by one of Grimsdell’s most popular authors and illustrators, Matt Carr: Rhinocorn Rules!
Aya tells us: “I really like the colourful illustrations in this book – they are full of stars and sparkles!”
Mrs Harvey would also agree with Aya’s choice. Matt Carr’s unique use of colour, varying font styles and thought provoking stories make his books a valuable teaching resource. I often use his texts to deliver my reading comprehension lessons during class Library sessions.
Rhinocorn Rules teaches children to always be themselves and the importance of friendship, as well as some fun facts about rhinos! In the story, we learn that Ron is a rhino like no other. He doesn’t like to live by the other rhino rules – the other rhinos are grumpy, solitary and they will charge at ANYTHING that gets in their way. Ron likes music, art and only wants to have fun. He is determined to live his best life and not conform to the herd. When Ron paints himself into a bright unicorn, all of the other animals think he’s the coolest animal ever, but his rhino family are less impressed. Will they learn to embrace Ron for who he really is?
From a literary perspective, the text has much to recommend it. The varied font size and style used throughout the book encourages the reader to think about the author’s intent. What is Matt Carr trying to convey? It challenges the reader to think more deeply about the story and the author’s purpose – which, in turn, develops the reader’s wider reading comprehension skills.
The are many reasons why an author changes the font size and style in a story. The use of certain fonts can make a reader feel a specific emotion. Alternatively, it can be used to express the personality or characteristics of a particular individual in the story. A change in font may indicate the internal thoughts of a character as opposed to what it being said aloud. An author may use font size and style to draw out the subtle nuances within a story.
Similarly, Carr’s use of speech bubbles adds a deeper meaning to the story. His utilisation of this fundamental comic book feature to his story helps to explain the speaker’s identity and emotional state, as well as the sequence of interaction. Speech bubbles afford the reader access to characters’ voices- both their private inner thoughts and their public verbal expressions.