Local Literacy Charity Helps Children To Read Well

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The latest Impact Report from Bradford-based charity, Reading Matters, shows the crucial difference that tailored one to one support can have on the reading ability, confidence and self-esteem of children and young people.

During the last academic year 2016-17, Reading Matters supported 6497 children and young people with reading at a time when 63,000 primary pupils leave school unable to read to the expected levels.

On average, after just 10 hours of one to one reading support from a Reading Matters’ trained Reading Mentor or Reading Leader (an older pupil who becomes a peer mentor to a younger one) a child’s reading age will improve by 13 months and often by much more.

98% of children who took part in a Reading Matters’ intervention programme demonstrated a marked improvement in reading ability and 90% showed an improvement in confidence and self-esteem.

Reading Matters manage a network of carefully selected, trained and vetted adult volunteer Reading Mentors in schools throughout Yorkshire.

Nationwide, they train Reading Leaders (older school pupils that act as reading role models for younger ones) in both primary and secondary schools with accreditation available for peer mentors aged 14 and over. They also offer reading development workshops and accredited training for school staff and parents and carers.

The Impact report is compiled annually using assessment data provided by Reading Matters’ Reading Mentors and Reading Leaders who are specially trained to get the best out of their one to one reading sessions with children and young people.

Reading Matters’ Mentors and Reading Leaders partner a child to help their reading development usually for 30 minutes twice a week, over a 10 week period. Emphasis is placed on getting to know the child and what interests them, understanding their particular difficulty with reading and on finding resources that will encourage and inspire them.

The last year has seen an increase in the number of Reading Leaders trained in primary schools. This training programme for peer mentors equips older pupils with the skills they need to support younger ones with reading development and is also great for improving school cohesion.

Reading Matters held a successful conference in Bradford entitled ‘Closing the Literacy Gap’ at the end of June this year and are currently running a poetry competition in conjunction with Kirkgate Shopping find ‘Bradford’s Young War Poet’.



Published: 18/09/2017
Audience: All
Contact: Fiona Binns

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