Incey Winceys Preschool sets a reading challenge for families
Mick Kingswell, preschool manager at Incey Winceys Preschool in North East London is working hard to encourage parents to share books at home and it is great to hear they are making really good use of the resources on www.lovemybooks.co.uk.
Mick told us about a 10,000 hour fund raising reading challenge they held in July. At the launch meeting they told parents about Lovemybooks, put up posters, gave out postcards and encouraged parents to spend time looking at the website.
We asked Mick how the challenge went:
‘We successfully reached our 10,000 minute reading goal we finally managed 10,211 minutes in total. Our charity target was £300 but to my surprise we made £545 for our local children’s centre and Salvation Army and will enable us to give out 100 or so high quality books to disadvantaged children in the local community.’
He said some parents found the reading challenge tough and not everyone got involved, some gave up after day one. The experience of sharing books on a daily basis was new to a number of parents some of whom admitted giving their child time on an iPad in lieu of a quality story time. However there were some big successes:
‘One or two parents said that they felt closer to their children. One dad mentioned how good it was for him to bond with his child. We see this as a huge success.’
‘The children responded well and were excited to read every day and were keen to tell me how many books they read the day before! One child said “my mummy forgot” and then this mum read twice as many stories that night! We could see obvious improvements in communication, concentration and vocabulary.’
A few parents made comments about Lovemybooks:
“I found the Lovemybooks website to be full of fun activities. We almost forgot to read sometimes because we got caught doing other things and had so much fun. We will check back for new books”.
“We used the website you gave us to look at what books to buy. Some of Jack’s books were too long, which put us off reading”.
Incey Winceys are finding the website useful in their setting as well. Mick told us:
‘We tend to look on Lovemybooks for ideas for activities or games. When we were looking at emotions we read Grumpy Frog , We used the ideas on the website to make frog puppets and used them in emotion role play. With Elmer where you suggested creating colourful elephants we went a bit mad and made a giant elephant together!’
‘We have bookmarked the site on the children’s iPads. We use the video links to watch a story at nap time. This has a calming effect and helps children especially those with SEN with their routine.
‘We also use the site for looking at books we don’t have, or for finding age appropriate books and use the ideas on the site to convince the finance people to buy the books we would like.’
Teachers and school leaders – Are you sharing www.lovemybooks.co.uk with parents in your school or setting too? Do let us know if so, we’d love to hear and share your experiences in our newsletters too. Email firstname.lastname@example.org.