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Published on: 2015-07-02 12:59:00
Paul Corner, Assistant Director at Nexus
Recent news that Eton’s headmaster, Tony Little, advises ‘children should be encouraged to read from their cereal boxes at breakfast time’ resonates with us at Nexus Fostering.
“Encouraging our foster children and young people to read is a top priority for us at Nexus". We have aspirations for them and we must ensure they achieve their full potential whilst with us. Reading is the key to learning so by urging them to read at any opportunity contributes to their education” explains Paul Corner, our Assistant Director.
It’s with this in mind that Paul is so keen to promote the Nexus Book Club to all children and young people involved with the organisation. “The Book Club offers ideas for age appropriate books for all the children associated with Nexus, I read at least 90% of the books myself to make sure they are interesting and engaging and then write reviews which I share with the children and young people via a regular newsletter.”
“The gap between the educational achievements of children in care and those who are not is staggering. Only 43% of ‘looked after’ children gain the GCSE grades needed to go on to higher education, compared with 84% of all other children. We need to redress that balance as a matter of urgency and I firmly believe encouraging them to read from a variety of sources is vital to their development”.
“We use the Nexus Book Club to encourage children to participate in competitions, share book reviews and enjoy being part of something. We support them to write stories themselves and, once a year, we ensure every single child is given a book of their choice. Each of our regions has a ‘Book Club Rep’ who gets to know what the children like to read and we encourage the children to keep in touch with their rep.
Paul and his teams ensure the emphasis is on ‘reading for pleasure’. “We all know that reading books helps the children and young people at school, but that’s not really why children read. They want to enjoy stories, be excited, scared and laugh out loudThey want to explore other worlds, to become James Bond, Spider Man or Elsa. They want to laugh at Paddington Bear’s antics and disappear into another world for a few hours and all the time they’re learning!”