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At Orleans Park, we ensure that there is both an embedded culture of reading for pleasure and an understanding that we also read to gain knowledge, ideas and inspiration.  Students read throughout the day and have access to a variety of books in the library.  In lessons, students are exposed to a wide range of texts.  Each curriculum area has a reading strategy tailored to their own subject.

Reading Across Departments

Reading for pleasure is encouraged through regular visits to the library at Key Stage 3, the Scholastic reading programme in years 7 & 8 (see below), and reading initiatives during Tutor Time. One of these initiatives is the tutor time reading programme, which encourages tutors and students to discuss shared texts. The key aims of the tutor time reading programme are:

  • To promote interests in different genres of literature and help nurture a love of reading
  • To expose students to a confident and fluent reader
  • To offer themes for discussion and practice oracy
  • To promote cohesion through the shared experience of reading a book together
  • To make reading for pleasure, a highly visible aspect of Orleans Park Culture

There are many other events which take place across the school year.  These include visits from storytellers and writers, an annual scholastic book fair, comedy writing workshops for years 7 & 8, poetry competitions to coincide with National Poetry Day, Readathons, creative writing clubs for Key Stage 3 and numerous trips to the theatre for Key Stage 4 which have included Animal Farm, A Christmas Carol and An Inspector Calls. 

Reading Lists
Key Stage 3
Key Stage 4
Key Stage 5

The Library and the Scholastic Reading Programme

Orleans Park school library is warm and welcoming and is run by an enthusiastic
professional librarian. It opens every day at 8am until registration time as well as at break time, lunch time and after school until 4pm (except Friday afternoon).

The library stocks a vast and up-to-date collection of more than 10000 books comprising of textbooks and revisions guides, a non-fiction section covering all aspects of the curriculum as well as special interests and a large fiction section. We cater to the varied needs of our students and reflect the diversity of our intake. The library catalogue can be accessed at home by using this link.

As well as a week of celebration activities for World Book Day and an annual book fair, Orleans Park students have the opportunity to join the yearly Richmond upon Thames Battle of the Books (winners 2022 and 2023) as well as the Carnegie Shadowing reading club.

The right book is a key. It opens a world of greater understanding, self-motivation, and joy.

We believe that just as independent reading is critical part of every child's learning and growth, finding the right book at the right time is an important first step in their individual development. With support from our Librarian and library time during English lessons, our students choose from Scholastic the books they want to read and in doing so, they empower themselves and the progress they achieve through those choices. Students can complete quizzes on books tailored to them and receive rewards.

Scholastic Teen Book Club

Lit in Colour Pioneers

It is essential to provide students with both experiences beyond their own and experiences that may resonate with them. As Lit in Colour Pioneers, Orleans Park School has collaborated with Penguin and Pearson to ensure that we deliver a diverse, representative curriculum and that students have access to exciting, modern, inclusive texts in our school library. Nationally, only 1% of all GCSE students study a book by a writer of colour so we have worked hard to ensure our programmes of study and library catalogue celebrate authors from all backgrounds. The "(incomplete) Lit in Colour" book lists can be found linked below and many of these texts are available in the school library or in English classrooms. 

The "(incomplete) Lit in Colour" Book Lists

A Collaborative Approach

We work closely with our local primary schools supporting with reading and also gaining from their expertise.  Older students from Orleans Park read weekly with younger students at the primary schools, supporting with reading and literacy.  Our CPD programme includes carousel activities focusing upon improving students reading skills, and sharing good practice from Key Stage 2.  Guest speakers include Year 6 teachers and consultants alongside our literacy co-ordinators, EAL teachers and the staff from the English department.  

Catch Up Literacy

At Orleans Park we use a variety of methods to identify students who require additional support with reading.  This includes Year 6 teacher feedback from transition visits, Key Stage 2 SATS results, and a reading age test conducted in the first few weeks of Year 7.  Students who are identified as requiring support, are paired with a Year 12 reading mentor, and read with them twice a week during tutor time in the library.  The Year 12 students receive training before the programme starts. 

We use the Rapid Plus books, and once the bespoke reading course has been completed, following careful tracking, student are re-tested to measure impact. 

Rapid Plus Books

Literacy at Orleans Park