Reading

Developing a Lifelong Love of Reading

"If you are going to get anywhere in life you have to read a lot of books." – Roald Dahl

At Cardinal Allen, we are proud to promote reading across the school. As part of our reading strategy, some of the ways we promote reading include:

  • All year groups reading for pleasure once a week during form time, as such, all pupils are expected to have a reading book with them every day as part of their equipment;
  • Reading a short story as a school across one day at the end of each half term;
  • We also adopt the ERIC (Everybody Reading in Class) approach and all pupils spend 20 minutes each week during lesson time reading non-fiction texts and this links with work we are doing as a school to close the vocabulary gap;
  • We also have ‘Bookbuzz’ for our Year 7 pupils where each Year 7 pupil receives a free book of their choice from a set selection;
  • A range of library activities celebrating key events, such World Book Day or ‘Blind Date with a Book’ for Valentine’s day, for example;
  • Enrichment activities such as author visits to school and book club;
  • Access to the Reading Cloud

We aim to use reading strategies and develop reading skills across all subjects whilst also fostering a love of reading for pleasure.

Accelerated Reader

At Cardinal Allen we use the Accelerated Reader programme to track and monitor the progress of your child's reading in Years 7 and 8. Accelerated Reader is a computer programme that helps teachers manage and monitor children's independent reading practice. The system assesses individual pupils' reading ages in relation to their chronological age and provides them with a personalised reading programme.

Pupils can log in here.

You can see your child's progress by logging onto Renaissance Home Connect. You can receive emails that reveal results for Reading Practice Quizzes and Vocabulary Practice Quizzes. The emails also provide links to the website where you can check progress. For access to Home Connect please contact our school librarian via our Contact Us page

You can view all the words your child has learned through quizzes and identify the words they missed to help them learn those words and to help us close any vocabulary gaps.

Accelerated Reader can also help us to identify where intervention and support may be needed to improve reading skills. Intervention may include: a reading mentor; guided reading support; computer software such as IDL, Nessy and Bedrock Vocabulary.

Accessing Reading Materials

If you have a valid Lancashire postcode and are a member of your local library, you can download digital eBooks, eAudiobooks and articles using the BorrowBox app on your Tablet/ Smartphone devices. You will need your library card, PIN number and an email address to get you started. All you have to do is go to your device’s App Store, search for BorrowBox and install the App. You then log in with your borrower library number and pin and register to use the service. This will take you to your Book Shelf where you will be able to see your loans, reservations and loan history. You now have access to over 11,000 audio and ebooks and it’s FREE! Further information can be found at Borrowbox

Reading Lists

These are the 'Top Ten' books all young people should read according to the National Book Tokens 'Writes of Passage' World Book Day list:

And here are our very own English Department Recommended Reads:


Year 7 Reading Recommendations
Year 8 Reading Recommendations
Year 9 Reading Recommendations
Year 10 and 11 Reading Recommendations

A Reading List for those wanting to push themselves with more challenging fiction texts can be found here.

Two Tier Reading Lists – Modern and Classic Fiction

You can also access an online search tool, AR BookFinder, to search for books using various criteria, including author, subject or reading level. You can view the books we have available in our school library by going to the following link: AR BookFinder use the keycode: IF875127

A Parents’ Guide to AR BookFinder
This would be a great way to support your child’s reading progress from home.

See below for examples of the reading lists available through AR Book Finder, such as Year Group collections, National Annual Reading Lists and Award Winners.

We also have some suggestions here about how you can support with your child’s reading at home.

After all, "The more that you read, the more things you will know, the more that you learn, the more places you'll go." - Dr. Seuss.