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A peek inside the Book Week

 The 1st to the 5th 2021 of March was book week, with the UK’s book day being on the 4thof March, and here in Nanjing, so was ours! The week was loaded with activities ranging from; hot chocolate corner, writing contests, guess the book, the OBIDO book sale and an exciting assembly (which showed off the great knowledge the students had of various books and some very inventive costumes indeed!) And this was just to name a few! Phew!

What I would really like to show case however is one activity, which as an English teacher, I feel was extremely beneficial. “Buddy reading, “or also known as “paired reading,” is where older students are paired with younger students to read books aloud to them. We carefully selected books beforehand that we felt would suit the age group that we were reading to. There were some nerves, with a lot of students saying, “I don’t know how to read to such small kids! What is they fall asleep, jump around and don’t understand me?” There was also lots of enthusiasm to get the chance to meet and read to the energetic primary students. You may ask, “What are the benefits of older students reading picture books to the little ones?” Well, one reason is a lot simpler than you may think!

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A lot of students are self-conscious to read aloud in the classroom due to fear of being over-corrected or being judged for making mistakes in pronunciation. The teacher therefore doesn’t often get the chance to hear reading fluency of their older students. Reading to a primary buddy is FAR LESS intimidating and lets the students read aloud without the fear of judgement. An overall goal that all subjects share, is the ability for students to read fluently and effectively. But this doesn’t come without practice. Our primary reading buddies were the perfect audience to allow senior school students the opportunity to not only practice their fluency, but tone, pitch, intonation and even facial expressions to keep them entertained. It was an engaging activity, that I hope to repeat monthly. Remember, your children may be nearing their teen years or there already, but they are never too old to read to you or a sibling too!

 

Mrs Janine Aziz

English Teacher