Billing Brook School

Billing Brook awarded Renaissance Champion School status

Billing Brook School has been awarded the Champion School status for our use of Accelerated Reader. 

‘Champion School status is awarded by Renaissance to schools that have demonstrated outstanding achievement in their implementation of Renaissance products for the benefit of pupils, teachers and parents to engender a true reading culture. Congratulations on the success your school has seen, and thank you for allowing us to share your story with others.’

 Renaissance UK

Accelerated reader provides almost 80 of our pupils with an interactive and engaging comprehension tool. Through the star reading assessment pupils are able to have their reading level assessed, providing them with a zone of reading. This supports staff and pupils with access to appropriate reading materials, which will not only reinforce word reading skills, but develop comprehension skills.

Many of our pupils struggle with comprehension, especially the inferential skills, and this programme supports pupils to access many of these question types. The amount of questions provided is appropriate, with only 10 needing to be answered on each book, supporting pupils with their attention skills. With a pass mark of 70% required it ensures that pupils do not move on before they are ready and it provides an essential tool to open up conversations with staff when incorrect answers are provided.

With a vast range of books available in the accelerated reader library it also supports a range of interests for our pupils. Many of the large reading schemes are on the system, supporting our internal reading package without the need to purchase specific materials, and many of the free reader texts can easily be found and levelled. Meeting the interests of the pupils is a large part of tackling the barrier to reading, developing a reading for pleasure approach, and so by accessing a large range of texts it ensures that pupils are more likely to engage with it and therefore retain the information further. Alongside this, being able to access texts of different lengths also means that those pupils with limited attention skills can engage in reading and have their comprehension skills supported.

The accelerated reader programme has also supported staff development as it will highlight areas in pupils reading development which need increased focus through the reports. Being able to see a pupils progress over a period of time, as well as seeing the question areas which are causing more difficulties, staff have been able to tailor texts and structured teaching lessons to target these areas.

Accelerated reader is a resource which we have used for many years and the reason we continue to use it is down to the fact that the pupils continue to be supported by it. It ensures that the work already being done in class and on an individual basis is supported by an external resource. Working together to improve reading for pupils, rather than working on separate entities, is what makes this work. It is a supportive tool rather than an add on.