As we countdown to the launch of The Reader’s Big Give Christmas Challenge, we’ve been catching up with three of the volunteers trained as a result of last year’s successful, award-winning campaign.
Discover the Reading for Life MSc programme of study which is now open for new applications in Liverpool and London.
At The Reader we’re constantly blown away by the personal stories our group members, volunteers and colleagues share with us. We’ve learned that you can never underestimate where your Shared Reading journey can take you, or where you can take Shared Reading! When Erin, our resident American returned stateside we knew it wouldn’t be the end of her Reader journey and we’re delighted to share her latest transatlantic update – Shared Reading hits Montana!
The Reader to bring Shared Reading to delegates at The International Society for Psychological and Social Approaches to Psychosis with conference appearance and newly announced Read to Lead course dates.
Today’s Reader Story comes from one of our Big Lottery Merseyside Volunteers who found the skills gained through volunteering also paid off in his professional role at GlaxoSmithKline.
We’re currently recruiting volunteers in Cheshire East – if you’re interested in delivering a regular Shared Reading session find out how you can get involved.
Looking for a new start with literature this Autumn? Interested in using your love of reading to make an impact on the lives of others – and to discover more about yourself? The Reader Organisation is taking our revolutionary shared reading course, Read to Lead, to Glasgow this October and November.
Read to Lead is the only course that introduces you to the working practice of shared reading. A stimulating, enriching and inspiring three-days literary learning will enable you to run shared reading sessions informed by The Reader Organisation’s visionary practice. After the course, you will receive twelve months access to our exclusive and specially tailored Ongoing Learning provision, ensuring you can further your shared reading practice with support from staff and fellow practitioners.
We’re especially pleased to be bringing Read to Lead all the way up to Glasgow this Autumn as we have a real Reading Revolution going on there already. Our Glasgow Schools project is a three year transition project, funded by the Tudor Trust, which aims to promote, develop and deliver a culture of reading amongst children, their families and the wider community in the East End of Glasgow. Each week our Reader-in-Residence Patrick reads with over 280 children through group, one-to-one and whole school readings. Children who have never read out loud before in the classroom are doing so with confidence and enthusiasm, recommending stories and poems to their friends and contributing more to their studies, with shared reading sessions an important part of the fabric of school life.
Here is just one Reader story from our Glasgow Schools Project, of a child from St Mungo’s Learning Community:
When I first met H, he was incredibly stony faced and made little to no eye contact throughout the entirety of our early sessions. However, as we progressed he began to enjoy the short stories more and really valued having an hour without his brother or any of his peers close at hand. The big breakthrough for H came when reading the Skellig extract from A Little, Aloud for Children. H loved the suspense and horror of finding a decrepit man in his garage and was gripped throughout. At the end of the session when I asked him for a mark out of 10 he gave it an 8. When I asked him why only an 8 he said “I’d give it 10 if we knew who the man was”. When I told H that this was an extract from a longer story and that we could read it and find out if he liked he beamed from ear to ear and nodded, repeatedly saying “Yes!”.
Since then H has given the story 10 out of 10 each week, been really articulate in his responses to meeting Mina, his concerns for the baby and how it must feel to be Michael. Teachers overhearing from their rooms or passing by are astounded at how positive and enthralled H has been, especially as his default setting in class is to be so reticent and dour. Each week he remembers exactly where we have left off and sits smiling for an hour as we continue with the story.
You could bring about the same effects with people of all ages and backgrounds by joining us for Read to Lead in Glasgow this Autumn and beginning your journey into the world of shared reading. No former experience with literature or education is needed – just a belief in the social value of reading, a love of literature and lots of enthusiasm.
For full information on Read to Lead and how to book your place on our Glasgow course, see the Courses section of our website or contact our Literary Learning Coordinator Sophie Johnson on firstname.lastname@example.org or 0151 207 7207.
The Reader Organisation are delivering three new upcoming Read To Lead courses this October in Devon, Glasgow and London. If you have a passion for sharing literature, then Read To Lead is a fantastic opportunity to help get others into reading.
Read To Lead courses take place across three days in which you will learn about the working practices of shared reading, explore its profound benefits for well-being, and connect with other shared reading practitioners both past and present. This is followed by an exclusive 12-month Ongoing Learning provision, which will enable you to deliver shared reading sessions informed by The Reader Organisation’s visionary practice.
Benefits of being a shared reading practitioner are numerous both for you and your beneficiaries. Not only does it develop an appreciation of literature and its social value, it also increases confidence, social awareness, group facilitatation skills and communication skills. You’ll enjoy a varied working environment where no two days are the same, and become part of an extraordinary network that is diverse, supportive and stimulating.
It’s a wonderful journey; a homecoming of sorts. I really like the motion and experience of something coming to life off the page and becoming real to the hearer in the moment.
Read to Lead re-energised me. You can get so bogged down, ticking other people’s boxes, but this helped me to focus on what is important and helped to build what we hope will be lasting partnerships.
Most gratifyingly, the sense of accomplishment and purpose which I get from running my group has spilled over into a general increase in my job satisfaction.
A background in literature or education is not necessary – we welcome people from all professions and social groups. All we look for is a strong belief in the social value of reading; passion; curiosity, and bags of enthusiasm.
Courses cost £750 per person (including the 12 month Ongoing Learning), with £250 concessionary places available, and there are flexible payment options to suit all.
Free tickets are still available for today’s Reading and Health event at the Liverpool Medical Institution organised by The Reader Organisation, Liverpool Medical Institution and the Royal Society of Medicine. The event takes place at 2–5.30pm with a drinks reception afterwards. Please ring Audrey or Sam at Liverpool Medical Institution to book a place: 0151 709 9125.
The event takes the form of a series of talks to medical professionals and people engaged in the interface between health care and patients, who are interested in seeing how reading can make a difference to their own quality of life and in exploring the therapeutic power of reading for the improvement of patient wellbeing.
Speakers include Dr Richard Horton, Editor, The Lancet; Dr Jane Davis, Director of The Reader Organisation; Professor Peter Davies, Consultant Physician, Liverpool and President, Liverpool Medical Institution; Dr Ivan Iniesta, Department of Neurology, Walton Neurological Centre; Dr David Fernley, Consultant Forensic Psychiatrist, Medical Director and Deputy Chief Executive at Mersey Care NHS Trust; and Dr Thomas Stutterford, Medical Correspondent, The Times.
The aim of the event is two-fold: to encourage all health care professionals to read more great books and to demonstrate the therapeutic power of reading, particularly shared reading, for the health and wellbeing of patients and service users within the NHS. The Reader Organisation’s leading social outreach project, Get Into Reading, is pioneering in its successful work within this field (In 2006 Get Into Reading was a finalist in the prestigious NHS Health and Social Care awards.) and continues to develop the project to improve wellbeing, build community and extend reading pleasure for more people.
Read To Lead Courses Coming Up
The Reader Organisation runs training courses for anyone interested in bibliotherapy and the Get Into Reading programme. There are still spaces on the following courses:
Spaces for the One Day Course in Birmingham Tuesday 18th November: The ‘Read to Lead’ One-Day Workshop provides an introduction to the principles of ‘Get Into Reading’ for anyone interested in bibliotherapy.
Spaces are still available for the Five Day course, starting 19th Jan 2009: The ‘Read to Lead’ Five-Day Accredited Facilitator Training is an intensive residential course intended for people who wish to become accredited Get Into Reading facilitators.