Born for Brilliant Books

Kath Saunders, Independent Usborne Organiser

School of the Term

8th May 2019

We are delighted to announce that Grange Primary School are the winners of our School of the Term award for Spring Term Two.

Celebrated six times a year, School of the Term is a half-termly award that is given to one UK or EU school that has had a fantastic event with an Usborne Organiser. We are very keen to showcase the amazing things that schools have achieved through working with their Usborne Organiser - it isn't just about the amount of money raised, but the difference made to the positive reading culture of that school.

Nominated by Usborne Organiser Rona McColgan, the work of Grange Primary School is a brilliant example of the impact a holistic approach to reading can have on an entire community:

"This school year, the focus for Grange Primary School has been 'Reading for Pleasure in School and the Community'. Using the hastags #readingtogetherwithgrange and #grangereadingrocks, the whole school has embraced reading and books under the guidance of principle teacher, Morag Oldham.

At the heart of this project has been the 'Community Reading Cafe', which is held once a month in the local community centre. Run by different groups of children from MAD (Make a Difference), every child from P2-P7 is given the opportunity to work in the cafe. The children are involved in a range of activities, including selling home baking and reading out loud to members of the local community. Each month, a different 'guest' is invited to demonstrate different ways of engaging with books, themes and stories. As an Independent Organiser I have been invited along to share stories and, as a member of the community, I have had the pleasure of being read to!

Mrs Oldham invited me into school to speak to the children from the Reading MAD Group - I was delighted to be able to share with them how Usborne could help them get even more free books! They produced a fabulous wish list of books they wanted for their school and for the cafe, and I was thrilled to be able to work with them to get some gorgeous new books which have already gone down well at the Reading Cafe.

This World Book Day, I was invited back to the school to run a book fair for the second year running. The excitement around the books was infectious, and teachers and staff planned a wonderful day based around the theme of 'sharing a story'. I had the utter joy of meeting with each class to talk about our books, and help them compile their wish lists. As well has being able to go to work in my pyjamas like the rest of the children, the book fair total came to an amazing £2,813, giving the school a further £1,688 in FREE books. Delight all round!

The whole school has embraced books and reading, and the enthusiasm from the children has been second-to-none. I am delighted for them; it's so great to have such a holistic, positive approach to reading. They're such worthy winners!"

We asked Mrs Oldham for her thoughts on the event and the school's experience of working with their Usborne Organiser: 

"We were amazed at the volume of free books we received as a result of the Usborne Book fair organised by Rona during World Book Week. Through this we were able to supplement our reading books in school, offering more engaging and inspiring material for our learners.

Our host, Rona McColgan was amazing. She was so well organised and spend time with each class talking through the books and helping children to find a book that best fitted their interests and reading ability.

Her enthusiasm for these books was evident, and this rubbed off on our school! We have a whole school focus on reading for enjoyment this year and I feel the Book Fair really added momentum to this. This is the second year we have offered an Usborne Book Fair and, although we were very impressed last year, this year has surpassed all our expectations. Having the relationship with Rona really makes a difference - she is able to let us know about any new releases, and the children really value her advice when choosing their books!"

Congratulations, Grange Primary! Your certificate will be on its way to you shortly.