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News story

Why one primary school in Peterborough is backing the BookBench trail

11 Dec 2019

children reading

In summer 2020, a trail of striking BookBenches will fill Peterborough city centre. Becky Dickson, Deputy Headteacher and English Subject Lead at St Thomas More Catholic Primary School, tells us why they have teamed up with another local school to be part of the project:

"We are incredibly proud and excited to be a part of the Peterborough Reads BookBench Project together with Sacred Heart RC Primary. It is so important that our children grow to have a love and passion for books. We hope that this bench will be a reminder of the power and importance of reading and help to encourage children and adults across Peterborough to reach out for a book, share and enjoy it together.

This bench is a small part of what we do at St Thomas More to promote reading and after the trail it will have pride of place near our Reading Bus. Our children will play a major part in the design of the bench and we will hold a competition to find a winning design.

Our community works hard to ensure that reading is a priority. Every night, pupils read to their family and record their reading in their reading records. This week alone, 89% of our entire school community read for seven nights. This is an outstanding achievement and we are thankful to our parents and carers who support their children so readily.

Our families know the importance of reading. Every half term, our pupils in EYFS and Key Stage 1 attend a ‘Be Enthusiastic About Reading’ (BEAR) café. This is a special time where teachers read a story to the children and their adults and then take part in craft based activities linked to the story read. This supports the pupils english and maths skills. At the end of the session, all pupils are given a book to take home and keep. Both of our playgrounds have well stocked reading sheds and comfy bean bags to snuggle down and read. During Christmas, we host “Stories around the Christmas Tree” which is a time to drink hot chocolate and listen to lots of Christmas stories under the soft glow of the tree lights.

Reading for pleasure is so important. At the end of each day, our children settle down and listen to a story read to them by their teacher. It is an extremely special time in school and one enjoyed by all.

We hope that when people sit on our bench, they will be: transported back to their favourite book; remember the time they were read to as a child and the emotions it evoked; think fondly about the person who read to them; think about the last time they read a book and be inspired to reach out and find the time to enjoy print."

Interested in being involved?

Schools: please find more information here

Businesses: contact Lisa Hynes, Business Development Manager

The Peterborough Reads BookBench trail is created in association with creative producers Wild in Art.

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