The National Literacy Trust is launching a London-wide creative literacy project for schools to run alongside Books about Town, an exciting public art event set to hit the streets of London this summer. Trails of benches shaped as open books, decorated by professional illustrators and local artists, will appear for the public to enjoy. The trails will give pupils a chance to be inspired by some of their favourite books and promote reading for enjoyment.
With the new curriculum coming in from September, the National Literacy Trust’s Books about Town for Schools combines CPD training for Key Stage 2 and 3 teachers on teaching whole texts and promoting reading for enjoyment with the opportunity for each school to bring reading, and London’s literary heritage, to life through designing their very own BookBench.
Our project aims to increase pupil attainment in 100 primary and secondary schools across London, and also improve teachers’ skills, knowledge and confidence around teaching whole texts, which our research shows is a key area of concern for teachers. The first training session will take place in June, after which we will support teachers in delivering this project in their classroom.
This exciting project is endorsed by several authors, whose texts and tips will also be included in the training and resource. Rob Lloyd Jones, author of Wild Boy, a mystery-adventure story set in Victorian London, says: “Books about Town is such an exciting idea to celebrate the wealth of diverse literature linked to London in schools. I’ve said before that Wild Boy was a love song to London. I don’t just mean the London that I called home, but also London the character – sometimes ugly, sometimes uplifting, always intriguing. The London of Chaucer, Dickens and Conan Doyle. The London of the imagination. I hope that the Wild Boy BookBench will capture the imaginations of young people too, and boost their interest in reading. I can’t wait to see some of the designs which pupils across the city are inspired to create for their mini BookBenches.”