Making reading fun for kids and parents

News Wales Education, Oct. 15th, 2013


A South Wales primary school is the first in the UK to pilot a new reading programme which aims to give young children a love of reading for meaning that develops comprehension skills and involves parents in the process.

Coed-y-Lan School in Pontypridd is undertaking a pilot of ‘SPECtacular Story Talk’, a skills-based programme which provides a gentle introduction to reading for enjoyment and understanding, showing parents and children how to share and explore books together.

‘SPEC’ refers to the set of comprehension skills in the programmes that help children to make meaning of text for themselves: summarising, predicting, enquiry and clarifying.

“The response has been even greater than we expected and early feedback from parents has been extremely positive,” said creator Donna Thomson, of Think2Read, the not-for-profit company which runs the programme. “We plan to extend the number of sessions to accommodate the extra parents who want to take part.”

“Children, teachers and parents are particularly excited by Think2Read’s interactive ‘SPECtacular Story Talk’ resources that provide them with memorable and easy to apply reading strategies for use in the classroom or at home”.

She added: “The involvement of parents in their child’s education is known to be hugely beneficial: it promotes important two-way communication between the school and the family, and fosters common aims that provides all-round support for the child.”