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We had a great time at Bearwood Primary School this month. The children were wonderful, they engaged enthusiastically with the material chosen for their Shared Reading sessions. Particular favourites were:
We have a secret, just we three,
The robin, and I, and the sweet cherry-tree;
The bird told the tree, and the tree told me,
And nobody knows it but just us three.
But of course the robin knows it best,
Because she built the—I shan’t tell the rest;
And laid the four little—something in it—
I’m afraid I shall tell it every minute.
But if the tree and the robin don’t peep,
I’ll try my best the secret to keep;
Though I know when the little birds fly about
Then the whole secret will be out.
It seems children like the idea of sharing a secret, they felt they could imagine the scene portrayed in the poem and it made them feel calm and excited at the same time. We read the poem over three times and then children chose their favourite verse and read in unison.
The stories have deep concepts yet the children devoured them uncovering feelings and emotions they had not thought they had. The Muslim Sufi tale of: ‘The Miserable man with his ack of stuff’ reminded us all how lucky we were to be where we are. ‘How The Rhinocerous Got his Skin,’ by Rudyard Kipling, evoked imaginative responses and Mr and Mrs Snooks, unable to blow out a candle, brought joviality and the absurd to the reading of, ‘The Snooks Family,’ by Harcourt Williams.
A fun time in which to learn not just about literature but also about each other Is perhaps what makes Shared Reading so enjoyable. Everyone who took part had a great time and I would like to give special thanks to the volunteer focus group that chose the stories and poems and to those that visited Bearwood Primary with me – Dal, Father Cownley, Neelam and Jonathan played significant roles in helping to support the group. I must also thank the Reverend Anthony Perry and Near Neighbours for funding the project.
We have six more sessions of ‘Make Friends with a Book for Children,’ to deliver, so keep your eyes peeled for more news in the New Year, finally Shared Reading has come to Bearwwod help us to make sure it stays here. Please send any enquiries to firstname.lastname@example.org
Merry Christams to all and Have a Happy New Year!
from Sarah Girling and Finulla Harrison