Friends of the Reading Bus

The Group
Based in Aberdeen, Friends of the Reading Bus aims to:

  • promote reading as a source of lifelong pleasure
  • raise attainment and achievement of children at risk of early failure
  • encourage family learning in a non-school environment
  • involve and empower fragile parents in their pupils' learning

What were they trying to achieve?
The group were keen to know more about community perceptions of literacy.  Particularly in relation to disadvantaged groups in order that the group could ensure its programme of activities was being delivered in an inclusive manner.

How did they go about it?
The group circulated questionnaires to a wide audience, visited bookstores with youngsters and created their own 'book bags' that included a wide variety of literacy materials.  Primary 7 youngsters piloted and project and completed questionnaires.

The group decided it would be more effective to allow youngsters to choose their own selection of literacy materials to take home rather than being given a prescribed bag.

What did they learn?
The group found out that boys are motivated by a wide range of literacy materials including non-fiction, sports books, top trump cards, internet.  They felt it was important that the choice in libraries reflect this.

What difference did it make?
The group have published their research findings and have made it available in a number of formats.  The wide rage of literacy materials selected has now been extended across the school.

A short video is now being produced and will be available in August 2008.

Jenny Watson