St Joseph’s Catholic School students Samantha Johnson, Vincent Railz and Madison Hard check out the books available to swap at the school’s book shuffle.
St Joseph’s Catholic School students Samantha Johnson, Vincent Railz and Madison Hard check out the books available to swap at the school’s book shuffle. LEA EMERY

Book shuffle aids reading

AS the school holidays rapidly approach, pupils at St Joseph’s Catholic School are getting a helping hand to discover new worlds with the school’s first “book shuffle”.

Year 4 student Madison Hard brought in 10 books to swap and was looking forward to choosing “new” books from the titles other students had donated.

“With new books you get to read them and they are more interesting than the old ones,” Madison said.

The youngster said she liked how books painted a picture in her head of what was happening.

The school’s literacy mentor, Kim O’Shea-Hard, said the idea for the book shuffle came about after talking to parents who complained about the cost of books and that their children were reading them quickly.

“We’re amazed with the quality of books and some are even novel length,” Ms O’Shea-Hard said.

Ms O’Shea-Hard said students received a ticket for each book they donated which they could then use to choose a replacement.

All up, 355 books were donated to the book shuffle, with James Willoughby donating the most of any student, with 45 volumes.

The book shuffle was only just the start of the school’s effort to get students reading.

“We’ve taken on a whole school approach to reading. What we find is students stop reading over the break so we are doing up holiday packs with puzzles and comprehension to help keep them reading,” Ms O’Shea-Hard said.

The Homework Challenge pack will be handed out to each of the students to do during the Christmas break.

Ms O’Shea-Hard said the pack included information for parents on where they could take their children for a free learning experience during the break.



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