Welcome to https://blogs.glowscotland.org.uk/dd/stjohnsliteraturecircles. The English Department have launched a new initiative in an attempt to get S2 and S3 pupils reading for pleasure – student led book groups.
These were introduced in August with every pupil in S2 and S3. They, like adult book groups, involve working together to read and talk about books. The groups are pupil led, so we feel empowered in our learning and supported by our peers. Moreover, we make all the decisions! We were given a choice of books to read at the start of August and we all voted on our favourites. The books were from a wide range of authors but all were challenging and stimulating. In letting us pick the books, we were far more engaged. We also pick how many pages we want to read each week and we meet at the end of a lesson to discuss our views and talk about what we have read.
In my class, I feel everyone enjoys this period. I like being able to talk about the books we are reading, and it has encouraged me to read books I would not have read before. My group are currently reading “I am Malala: The Girl Who Stood Up for Education and Was Shot by the Taliban”. This is an autobiography and not something I would ordinarily have picked up. I usually read fiction and though it has taken a while for me to get into the book, I am now really enjoying learning about a different culture that is so far removed from my own.
Although it is early days, I feel the literature circles will motivate more pupils to read for enjoyment in our school. I am already looking forward to receiving my next book and reading something I would never have considered.
Ruth Black (S3)