School Library

The School Librarian is Mrs Kirsty Dickson

Pupils are welcome to use the library from 8.30am, during break and part of lunchtime to catch up with homework, read, or play board games.

There is a wide range of fiction and non-fiction books, as well as magazines, study guides and many other resources. Pupils use their Live Life Aberdeenshire library membership in the school library, and through this have free access to digital services such as e-books, audio books, newspapers, magazines and databases:

Accelerated Reader

‘Reading for Pleasure is the single most important indicator of a child’s future success’. (OECD, 2002)

Regular reading is important for pupils to improve their literacy and help them in all of their subjects. Studies have shown that reading for pleasure has a significant effect on academic success. It increases vocabulary, knowledge, memory function and communication skills, as well as lowering stress, increasing empathy and boosting mood. Just as regular exercise is important to keep your body healthy, regular reading helps to keep your brain healthy.

S1 & S2 pupils use a programme called Accelerated Reader (AR) at school. AR is a reading programme that helps to improve literacy levels. Your child will be expected to read an AR book for 20 minutes every day as part of the programme, followed by a reading practice quiz whenever a book is finished.  This reading is ongoing homework in English.

How the Accelerated Reader programme works:

  1. At the start of every term pupils take a short ‘STAR’ test in school which measures their reading age and ability and allows us to track the positive progress that they are making through their engagement with the programme. The test gives each pupil a ZPD, based on their reading ability, which will help them to choose books at the right level for them.
  2. Each pupil should have an Accelerated Reader book within their ZPD/reading range and read this for 20 minutes every day (this is ongoing English homework). It is up to each pupil to choose what level to read at within their ZPD.
  3. When they have finished their book they should take the reading practice quiz – this can be done at any time, it doesn’t have to be done in school. They will be awarded book points based on their performance on the book quiz. They should aim to do this within 24 hours of finishing the book. These can be done at school or at home.
  4. Once they have completed the quiz, they should choose another book, read and quiz. A quiz can’t be retaken, so if they don’t pass they will need to move on to their next book, but might want to look at one lower down in their reading range.
  5. Targets are set termly, after the STAR test. There are 3 targets: average percentage correct on book quizzes; book points; and ATOS (book) level. These can be viewed in Renaissance HomeConnect or Renaissance Place>Accelerated Reader. Book points and book level are different for every child, based on their reading level.

Pupils normally begin their English lessons with Personal Reading time, and have a library lesson every two weeks where they will be able to choose their own books to read, based on their reading level. There are around 3,000 AR levelled books in the school library, but they can also read books from elsewhere if they are on the AR programme (you can check on AR Bookfind). Pupils should aim to finish a regular sized book every 2-3 weeks, more if they are shorter books or graphic novels.

Every pupil’s reading range is noted in their reading log at school and can also be viewed by logging in to Renaissance Place, choosing Accelerated Reader, and clicking Progress on the top right-hand side of the screen.

Useful links:

AR Bookfind to check if a book is on the AR programme

Renaissance Place pupil log in to take AR quizzes or check targets:

Home Connect for parents to keep up to date with progress (use the same username & password your child uses at school). If you’d like to receive emails with your child’s quiz results, click the Email Setup link in Renaissance Home Connect and follow the instructions.