Our next ReadingZone Live event features the author Christopher Edge on 12th June from 2:30pm.
Christopher Edgewrites science-based fiction for 9/10+ readers and is an award-winning children’s author whose books have been translated into more than twenty languages.
Christopher grew up in Manchester where he spent most of his childhood in the local library dreaming up stories. As an adult, he still spends most of his time in the local library dreaming up stories but the libraries are now in Gloucestershire where he lives.
Before becoming a writer, he worked as an English teacher, editor and publisher – any job that let him keep a book close to hand. When not writing, he also works as a freelance publisher and education consultant and has written publications about encouraging children to read.
His novel The Many Worlds of Albie Bright won several children’s book awards and was also nominated for the CILIP Carnegie Medal, as was his novel The Jamie Drake Equation, which was also selected as one of the best new children’s books of 2017 for Independent Bookshop Week. His novel The Infinite Lives of Maisie Day has been shortlisted for the STEAM Children’s Book Prize and was also chosen by The Times as their Children’s Book of the Week.
You can find resources for his books, including book trailers, author videos, teaching notes, interviews, articles, reviews, sample chapters and even playlists for the book soundtrack by clicking here to be taken to his new resources page.
Below is the trailer for The Infinite Lives of Maisie Day:
ReadingZone Live brings regular interviews and live videos conferences with some of the best contemporary children’s authors and illustrators (Jaqueline Wilson, Michael Morpurgo, Lauren Child and Oliver Jeffers to name a few) to London schools through our partnership with ReadingZone.
LGfL schools are linked to our live author events via video conferencing, with one school selected to host the author event, during each event, authors discuss their writing process before answering the student’s questions via video. It is really easy to take part in one of our ReadingZone Live events and they can have a real impact on both the students and reading within your school. For more detailed guidance please read this updated information.
We want as many schools as possible to experience the ReadingZone Live programme in a live, interactive way. You can also view the event on the day here: www.rzlwatch.lgfl.net starting at 2:30 pm on 12th June. More details of the event and how you can be involved can be found here. We also have a collaborative question document here where your students can pose their questions for Christopher.
This live event is most suitable for Upper Primary (Year 5 & 6) and possibly Year 7s too.
Remember if you do take part in the ReadingZone Live event, or use any LGfL content to inspire your students, do let us know by posting on LGfL’s Twitter or Facebook.
Armistice day or Remembrance Day is on the 11th November, it marks the day that World War 1 ended at 11 am on the 11th day, of the 11th month in 1918. Ceremonies are held at the Cenotaph in London as well as at War memorials and churches across the U.K. and overseas. A 2 minute silence is held to remember the people who have died in all wars – WW1, WW2, Falklands, Gulf war as well as the conflicts in Argentina and the Iraq.
King George V held the first 2 minute silence on 11 November 1919 and made the request for the silence to be observed so:
“thoughts of everyone may be concentrated on reverent remembrance of the glorious dead”.
100 years ago the First World War ended, and a new world began. The example and experience of those who lived through it shaped the world we live in today. This year, The Royal British Legion is leading the nation in saying Thank You to all who served, sacrificed and changed our world. The video below explains more, there are six videos in total where you can find out more about the stories of people such as: Olive Edis, the first female war photographer, who worked for MI5, Marie Curie, who made x-rays mobile, Flora Sandes, who was the first female soldier, Eugent Clarke, who paid his own way from the Carribean to become and labourer, and Walter Tull, who was the first black soldier to become an officer. Watch the full videos here:
They have partnered with the National Literacy Trust to create a series of downloadable lesson plans and teacher support materials that are free to use. They have developed six sets of five lesson plans, two each for Key Stages 2, 3 and 4, accompanied by an assembly plan each for primary and secondary schools.
The lessons are planned to take place in the week leading up to Remembrance Sunday with each set of plans building to focus on an individual. The week culminates in a lesson where children write a thank you letter to that individual, paying tribute to their huge contribution both during the war, and also for how they helped shape the world after the war ended.
They hope to bring the First World War to life for pupils and to raise pupils’ awareness of the golden threads linking their lives today back to the First World War generation, ensuring that Remembrance is understood and available to all, and handed to the next generation.
You can download the lessons, resources and assembly plans here, and join in the conversation on Twitter using #THANKYOU100
There are many ways of remembering with pupils, for younger pupils Busy Things have a template poppy to paint, for older students they could make their own poppies – from hand prints and then use these to write poetry on. In Flanders Fields and Ode to Remembrance are two poems that could be shared with older students, they could use copies of these to create their own ‘black out poetry’ this is when a page of text, is coloured over so that only a few words are visible, these words then create a new poem, great to get the children thinking about the choice of their words. Pupils could use J2E to research and write about the impact of the wars on their local community after perhaps visiting their local war memorial.
Our ReadingZone Live resource features Michael Morpurgo talking about Private Peaceful, there are 6 short interviews that can be watched and used as discussion points looking at why he wrote the book, discussing the conflict and the morality of war and what Michael would like people to take away after reading the book. Into film also have a range of resources linked to the film adaptation of the book with resources linked to a range of curriculum subjects including Citizenship, English and History.
You can also listen to an abridged version of the story in 13 chapters via BBC School Radio (you will need to sign in to BBC iplayer to listen) there are programme notes, episode summaries, literacy activities and a gallery of images, like the one below great to use for writing and drama prompts.
Widgit – have a range of Activities and books on Remembrance Day as well as WW1 and WW2 to support learners in class.
First World War – TheActiveWorksheet was producedinresponsetothecentenaryof theoutbreakofWorldWar1.Theresourcepackusesaugmentedrealityto produceagenuine‘wow’momentintheclassroomandbringvirtualartefactsto thedesktop.Thisisbackedupbymappedcurriculumactivitiesfocussingon history,literacy,musicandart.
Passchendaele – Modern Foreign Languages resource pack – This pack has been published to commemorate the centenary of the Battle of Passchendaele which took place between July and November 1917. It enables teachers to explore the First World War in their classrooms whilst also developing modern language skills in their classroom through a series of creative, memorable and engaging activities. The pack is part of Passchendaele at Home – a nationwide research-and- remember project inviting schools and community groups across the UK to discover servicemen buried or commemorated in the UK who were wounded at the Battle of Passchendaele in 1917. Suitable for ages 7-14
World War 1 – This collection from BBC schools has a range of videos, activities and assemblies for both primary and secondary schools.
Poppies – is a beautiful animation from Cbeebies following a young rabbit through the poppy fields, great to use with younger children.
The Salvation Army – have a range of. resources to be used when looking at Remembrance Day these include, assemblies and presentations.
The author Tom Palmer has a range of resources available to use within the classroom all around the theme of remembrance, linked to books that he has written. Reading War, is an online resource packed with information on WW1 and exploring the themes of Over the Line by Tom Palmer and Tilly’s Promise by Linda Newbery.
Trench experience – thisinnovativevirtual-realityapp from LGfL bringslifeinthetrenchesto life,andisidealforHistoryandEnglishteacherscoveringWorld War1andtrenchlifeandwarfareingeneral.
The M room –TheMRoomresource from LGfL givesexclusiveaccesstosecretWorldWarIIlistening siteswheretheBritishSecretServicebuggedhigh-rankingGermanMilitary prisoners.Theresourcefeaturesaninterviewwithoneoftheoriginalsecret listenersandextensiveprimary-sourcematerialfromtheMinistryofDefence, relativesofthoseinvolved,andTheNationalArchives.
Women in computing –WomeninComputing from LGfL aimstorecogniseandpromotethe achievementsofwomeninBritishcomputingwithinthesocial contextofthetime. The work of women as code breakers during WW2 is one of the areas that is covered within this resource.
Activehistory – There are a collection of Remembrance Day materials here for Years 7- 13, including an assembly, put together by Russell Tarr.
The War and Peace shed from the Literacy Shed, has a range of short films that could be used when looking at the theme of Remembrance. There is also an excellent blog post from the Literacy Leader, including more book and film ideas and resources.
‘They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old: Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn. At the going down of the sun and in the morning We will remember them.’
If you would like to share work with us on our Twitter or Facebook pages, it would be great to see. #THANKYOU100
Today is International Women’s Day, this is a global day celebrating the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women. The day also marks a call to action for accelerating gender parity. International Women’s Day (IWD) has occurred for well over a century, with the first March 8 IWD gathering supported by over a million people in Austria, Denmark, Germany and Switzerland. Prior to this the Socialist Party of America, United Kingdom’s Suffragists and Suffragettes, and further groups campaigned for women equality. Today, IWD belongs to all groups collectively everywhere. IWD is not country, group or organisation specific. Make IWD your day! – everyday!
The theme for this year is #PressforProgress to encourage everyone to think, act and be more gender inclusive.
There are lots of resources that schools can use both today and throughout the year to educate and inspire pupils about the role of women in society as well as challenging gender stereotypes and bias. The International Women’s Day website has a huge range of resources for schools. From Doctor Who and Suffragettes, to comic strips and poems – the International Women’s Day classroom resources cover a great deal of important content and activities.
They are also running a competition for schools asking children to write about a person, in 150 words or less, who has inspired them and draw a picture of them in their own style, the prize is framed Artist’s print plus Puffin books for there school library. The competition closes on March 30th 2018 and you can find out more information here
In honour of International Women’s Day, Google are swapping out their normal ‘doddle’ for 12 interactive doodles that celebrate the work of female artists from around the world. These could be a great way to introduce the day, a
“We hope that the combined power of words and images help bring these stories to life in a way that invokes feelings of understanding, empathy and spirit of the day,” wrote Lydia Nichols and Alyssa Winans, Google’s project leads for International Women’s Day, in this post about IWD.
LGfL have a range of resources that you can use in schools to support IWD, Women in Computingaimstorecogniseandpromotetheachievementsof womeninBritishcomputingwithinthesocialcontextofthetime.Itdoesnot seektodwellonnegativeaspectswherewomanhavebeenpreventedfrom contributingtothecomputinglandscape,butitdoesexploretheissues surroundinghowandwheretheiruniquecontributionshavedeveloped understandingandachievementwithinthecomputingindustryandinwider society.
The video clip below from Tudors in London can be used to explore how attitudes to learning and education have changed, a great discussion point to start a discussion about the rights of women and girls in society especially as this year also celebrates 100 years since women got the vote in England. The Museum of London have an exhibition running until the end of month about Votes for Women you can find out more here.
Our Online Safety portal also has a range of resources that look at promoting a positive body image, these are an excellent resource for PHSE lessons as well as a starting place for discussions about the way that women are presented in the media. Other resources that could be used include LGfL Gallery, which atpresentcontainsover60,000Image,AudioandVideo resourcescoveringawiderangeoftopicsrelevanttothecurriculum.Itspurposeistoprovidea freerepositoryofhighqualitymaterialscopyrightclearedforuseinteachingandlearning. You can search using the tag ‘women’ to see different ways that women have been portrayed over time and Reading Zone Live which features a range of female authors including Gillian Cross Jacqueline Wilson and in our latest Reading Zone Live event on the 21st March the author Mini Grey.
Whatever you do today for IWD please share via our twitter or Facebook pages using the #PressforProgress and remember all the resources can be used across the school year to celebrate, educate and inspire pupils about the roles of women in society.
World Book Day is a celebration! It’s a celebration of authors, illustrators, books and (most importantly) it’s a celebration of reading. In fact, it’s the biggest celebration of its kind, designated by UNESCO as a worldwide celebration of books and reading, and marked in over 100 countries all over the world.
This is the 21st year there’s been a World Book Day, and on 1st March 2018, children of all ages will come together to appreciate reading. The main aim of World Book Day in the UK and Ireland is to encourage children to explore the pleasures of books and reading by providing them with the opportunity to have a book of their own. That’s why World Book Day will be sending schools (including those nurseries and secondary schools that have specially registered to participate), packs of Book Tokens and age-ranged World Book Day Resource Packs (age-ranged into Nursery/Pre-School, Primary and Secondary) full of ideas and activities, display material and more information about how to get involved in World Book Day.
The Wold Book Day website is packed with ideas for dressing up, resources, and the chance to sign up to watch live streamed shows on World Book Day.
Reading Zone Live from LGfL is the perfect resource to use within your class on World Book day, the site is packed with interviews with authors including: Michael Murpurgo, Oliver Jeffers, Jacqueline Wilson and Cressida Cowell to name a few. Alongside interviews with the authors explaining their inspiration and writing resources, there are also a range of resources for teachers to use in class. Our next Reading Zone Live event is with the author Mini Grey on the 21st March 2018, you can find out more information and how to watch here.
You can also use the j2etool suite to complete one of the following activities: Why not have a vote on World Book Day as to who the favourite author is in your class or school, ask the children to write a book review or a biography of their favourite author using j2e and finally they could use the tools in JIT to create an alternative book cover. The tool suite includes some templates that can be used on World book day.
Book creator app is a fantastic app to use on World Book day, you can use either the tablet or web based version to get children to create their own books, combining text, image, audio and video to create their own interactive stories that they can share.
The author Jo Cotterill has come up. with a fantastic range of World Book Day Alternative ideas, these include Potato and Egg characters, donate a book and build a book scene in a box you can see these ideas and more here.
Night Zoo Keeper also launch their World Creative Writing month on World Book day, this is a month long competition where classrooms around the world work together to write as money stories as possible. Last year schools from 30 countries wrote over 6 million words. The very best writing is showcased each week with prizes up for grabs – you can find out more about this and how to register here.
What do you have planned for World Book Day we would love to see pictures and work please share via our twitter or Facebook pages #WBD18
With Christmas on it way don’t think that LGfL have forgotten you! We have 3 great gifts for you and your students!
In partnership with ReadingZone Live we are proud to announce not one not two but three new updates to our ever-expanding book case of children’s authors.
ReadingZone Live is a partnership with ourselves and Reading zone bringing regular interviews and live videos conferences with some of the best contemporary children’s authors and illustrators to London school, you can see past events here.
Antony Horowitz, Sally Gardner, Sophie McKenzie, Robert Muchamore, Pete Johnson, and Alexander Gordon Smith are among the authors who have already joined us for the ReadingZone Live Programme, which helps to inspire young people to explore new authors and genres and help children to develop their own creative writing.
LGfL schools are linked to our live author events via video conferencing, with one school’s selected to host the author event, during each event, authors discuss their writing process before answering the student’s questions via video.
First up is Cath Howe Author of soon to be published ‘Ella on the Outside’ Cath Howe is an author and teacher working in a South West London school writing for, and working with, Key Stage 2 primary age children.
Her first two books were published in 2012 by Pearson in their Bug Club, “The Curse of the Highwayman” and “The Highwayman’s Revenge”. She has won prizes for stories, poems and monologues and even written a musical.
Cath speaks about how her role as an author in residence works and how it can be different to being a class teacher “A writer in residence can focus on a task in a different way to the class teacher who has all sorts of other demands on their time” and how knowledge of the students can help affect to the stories told “You have the children’s voices in your head when you are writing parts of the story as you get to know the children in school so well”
Secondly, we have Roger Stevens who was interviewed as part of his role as National Poetry Ambassador for National Poetry Day.
Roger has written over 24 books and has poem published in over 200 children’s anthologies, He is also the founder of the Poetry Zone website, which encourages children to write and publish their poetry and offers guidance and ideas for teachers on how to make teaching poetry fun and rewarding.
During the interview Roger speaks about how he creates poems and how much music influences his work “The Lyrics of Bob Dylan helped me understand that you could write about real, important topics but in a simple format” he also speaks of the importance of having a notebook to jot down what people are saying around him or when something pops into his head “You need to keep your ears and eyes open to help inspire you to write poems”
Roger also speaks about why National Poetry Day is such an important thing to celebrate “We need national poetry day to show the world that there are brilliant poems out there! That poems don’t need to be academic and can be fun!”
Last up is the wonderful author illustrator Oliver Jeffers who was interviewed by six different schools across London. Oliver spoke about his new book “Here We Are” and shared with the children the book written for his son before he was born and that at its core, has a simple message, to be kind, accept one another and to look after the planet. In the book one page depicts dozens of people nudging up to one another a lady in a burqa; a sumo wrestler wedged between a nun and a punk – and the line: “don’t be fooled, we are all people”.
Oliver was excited to share his creative process and shared with the audience the secret of writing a good children’s book ‘Try and be economic with your use of words. Say what you are trying to say with as few words as possible’ When asked how does an illustrator find their own style instead of just copying someone else he explained ‘Illustrators find their style when they stop trying to copy other peoples’
If you are interested in taking part in ReadingZone Live event or want to just submit questions to be posed to the author just contact firstname.lastname@example.org
National Non-Fiction Novemberis the Federation of Children’s Book Groups’ annual celebration of all things factual. Born out of National Non-Fiction Day, the brain child of Adam Lancaster during his years as Chair, the whole month now celebrates all those readers that have a passion for information and facts and attempts to bring non fiction celebration in line with those of fiction.
The theme for this year is The World Around Us. Focusing on books that explore different natural environments and their flora and fauna. Through their engagement with books, the federation hope that young readers will:
be encouraged to look more closely at the world around them;
develop their natural curiosity and want to find out more for themselves;
expand their knowledge and build their expertise in topics of personal interest;
be inspired to take care of the natural world;
think about what action they could take to help protect endangered environments and species.
The Federation of Children’s Book Groups has produced a range of resources that teachers and children can use during the month. This includes a range of posters, bookmarks and suggested books for in the classroom. They have also produced a booklist of 100 brilliant non-fiction books for children and young people.
You can celebrate Non-Ficion November by joining us for our next Reading Zone Live with Oliver Jeffers.
Oliver has just published his first non-fiction book Here we are:
“It started off as a book about the realization that new life is a blank slate (trying to explain what a door is, and what a kitchen is for), and the strangeness of being a new parent. But as the book unfolded, so did the global events of the last year or so, and it felt like it became more urgent to reinforce some basic things my parents taught me about the simple principles of humanity. I wanted my son to know that while we are all unique individuals, we are all in this together.”
Listening Books available through LGfL have over100 curriculum based audiobook by simply logging on with their LGfL username and password. Two new releases to the LGfL Listening Book catalogue of audio books. “Why is Snot Green? And Other Extremely Important Questions” and “Inventors and their Bright Ideas” You can find out more about Listening Books in this blog post.
National Poetry day is on the 28th September 2017, the theme this year is Freedom.
To get you ready for this, LGfL are hosting a special Poetry themed Reading zone Live with Roger Stevens on the 27th September at 2:30 pm. Roger Stevens is best known for founding and running the award-winning Poetry Zone website. His most recent poetry collections include It’s Not My Fault (with Steven Withrow) and an anthology called Is This a Poem. Reading zone live is an excellent way for you and your class to engage with an author and hear how he creates poems and ideas as well as asking questions either before the day or during the event.
We would love you to join in with this event and there are a number of ways you can do this:
If you have access to Video conferencing (VC) facilities you can link with the live event by e mailing email@example.com