Since November, Junior School students have been reading more than ever before. A visiting dragon named Sam has been looking for some new scales, and by reading a little bit each week, students from Kindergarten to Grade 5 have been earning him shiny scales and guiding him on his journey to becoming a person.
“The children loved this theme,” says librarian Diana Nason. “It really inspires them to read.” The reading incentive programme works by having students devote a certain amount of time to reading, based on their grade level, and then bringing in notes from their parents to show they’ve been doing their part.
The first week, students used old CDs, which were donated from the IT department at the Senior School, to cover Sam in scales. In the second week, Sam realized he was a man under a spell and in the third week, he was given a mirror so he could see himself as a man. Because they did their reading, students were able to vote on which Junior School teacher Sam would want to look like, and they chose their music instructor Duncan Frater.
At the end of the programme, each class received a certificate from Sam the dragon, in which he says he enjoys reading with his new friend Mr. Frater and asks the students to introduce him to the pretty female dragon in the library. The most diligent readers get their names entered in a draw, where they can win books, and the class that hands in the most complete reading records gets to choose the theme for the next programme.
“At the Junior School, we surround the children with books and reading,” says. Ms. Nason. “There is strong reading environment.”
The dragon theme was chosen by last year’s Kindergarten and Grade 2 students, and the Grade 2 class won this year, so they will be selecting the next theme for the incentive programme.