On Monday 14th January children took part in a ‘Book at Bedtime’ evening. The children and their families went home at the end of the school day and returned when it was just getting dark, wearing their pyjamas (teachers attending the event also got cosy in their pyjamas!). The two school halls were transformed, one into a cosy reading space with cushions, beanbags and blankets with an open fire recording projected onto the screen, a puppet theatre and a story telling chair. In the second hall there were drinks and biscuits and the Norfolk Children’s Bookshop had sent a pop-up bookshop for people to browse and buy books to take home.
The idea came after teacher and KS1 lead, Louise Birchall, undertook research promoted by the Open University Reading for Pleasure pedagogy led by Teresa Cremin. The main aims of the evening were to:
- give parents and children the confidence to read whatever they like
- encourage families to talk about reading
- make a story at bedtime part of everyday life
- create a fun, inviting and informal reading environment which could then be recreated at home
The evening was timetabled so parents could choose when they would like to hear stories and when they may prefer to talk to teachers or browse the bookshop. The timetable was comprised of storytelling – teachers reading stories – and singing – children singing nursery rhymes to piano accompaniment.