Donations sought to give SEND school's library boost - The Solihull Observer

Donations sought to give SEND school's library boost

Solihull Editorial 1st Jul, 2024   0

SILHILLIANS are being called on to dig deep to brighten up and fill the library at a special education needs and disability (SEND) school.

The Heights Academy is hoping to raise £800 to transform its library from a blank space with books, tables and chairs into an engaging space with cosy corners, reading nooks, audiobook stations and fill it with books that interest the children.

The Smith’s Wood school opened its doors last year to autistic children and English teacher Stacey Gallagher took on the challenge to make the library and reading more interesting to pupils.

She said: “I know how important reading is to a child’s education, so our library really was a blank canvas for me to develop.

“My initial thoughts were that our current library does not engage pupils at all, particularly in a school where some pupils deem reading as ‘boring’, so the challenge is thinking about how to engage pupils.

“To start with the space, we needed to add cosy corners and reading nooks, which will hopefully also be a ‘safe/enclosed space’ for our pupils.

“Many of our pupils benefit from having a safe space, therefore, we must provide this within our library. We also have a range of soft furnishing, that will provide a comfortable place to read.”

Her next challenge was to get children who do not want to read, or don’t want to read what’s on offer, into the library and engaged with literature.

To overcome this Stacey has asked the pupils to provide a list of what types of books they would want to see and she wants to have audiobook stations, where pupils can select books to listen to alone or in groups.

She said: “We also have a vision of installing a projector, or interactive board, where we can set the scene through music or allow pupils to enjoy story videos.

“We hope this will fully immerse our pupils and making reading a little more engaging.

“LED lights will also be fitted around the room and inside our new reading den.

“We also have subscriptions for First News Newspaper and Match magazine, as we have many football fans in school.”

The pupils at the Auckland Drive school have also got involved in the renovation with one year seven pupil hand-making the signs.

For more or to donate click here.


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