Latest success stories from Renaissance Learning

The Digital Library that has Boosted Reading Engagement at Hevingham Primary School

Hevingham Primary School, Norfolk, England

In 2021, Hevingham Primary School introduced the Complete Literacy Solution from Renaissance to help keep pupils engaged with reading and to support the school’s literacy development plan.   

With the Complete Literacy Solution, the school now has the following resources to maintain a strong culture of reading:

  • Accelerated Reader – book quizzes which pinpoint each pupil’s unique reading level signposting them to more accessible texts via AR book labels printed and added to all books in the school.
  • Star Reading – reading comprehension assessments using computer-adaptive questions to determine each pupil’s overall reading comprehension and provide clear reports illustrating each pupil’s unique progress and standardised reading benchmark.
  • myON – an online digital library of over 7,000 interactive texts that any pupil can access on any device at any time. myON can support in-class guided reading or read on the go. The interactive features, including an in-text dictionary and thesaurus, make reading more accessible for all pupils.

We got in touch with Teacher and English Subject Lead at Hevingham Primary School to determine whether the Complete Literacy Solution from Renaissance has met expectations and how myON, specifically, is used to support the school’s recovery learning strategy.

Liz explains:

A Big Boost in Reading Engagement

“The most important thing is that the children have access to extra books that they wouldn’t have otherwise.”

We got myON as part of our Accelerated Reader package. The head teacher was very keen on Accelerated Reader. We’d heard good things about it from other schools. So we included myON as part of the package, and it’s been really positive.

Some of our pupils’ families may not necessarily have many books at home. Therefore, myON has been great in introducing a range of texts to each pupil’s home to encourage reading engagement outside school. We’ve found that digital texts are especially effective with pupils who are more reluctant to engage with hard copy texts.

We don’t want to go entirely electronic. We also want paper books, but myON’s digital library sits alongside that. We very much view it as having multiple ways to generate reading engagement and interest for all pupils. We want the pupils to be exposed to digital and hard copy texts. We’ve got a well-stocked library of good quality paper books, but for some pupils, just having a text on a screen does help to engage them as for many of them, it’s just what they’re used to.

Almost every pupil will have access to at least one electronic device, such as a tablet, at home, either their own or their parent’s. Many of our pupils’ parents have found it easier to get the children reading at home if it’s on the tablet, just because some children find that more appealing. Still, obviously, the most important thing is that the children have access to extra books that they wouldn’t have otherwise.

With myON, the pure engagement we’ve seen with children has been really positive, and certainly, some families found it easier to engage their children with digital texts than hard copies.

What’s also great about myON is the number of non-fiction books in the digital library. For many of our non-fiction texts in the library, there is often not a book quiz for the child to carry out. With myON’s abundance of non-fiction texts and all of them having an attributed quiz, our pupils are now reading and assessing their understanding of non-fiction.

Whole Class Guided Reading

“Whole-class guided reading with myON allows the teacher to guide pupils throughout topical texts and assign further reading to boost each pupil’s understanding of the topic.”

myON also works well as a whole class guided reading resource for teachers. We can show myON on the interactive digital whiteboard in each class to show pupils the fundamentals of the myON user interface.

Pupils find myON incredibly intuitive, and we haven’t seen any issues with pupils navigating their way around the digital library. Every child knows where to find the right books and how to interact with each text, including defining words in the dictionary and completing the respective book quiz. With each book quiz, the pupils’ respective ZPD range is updated, so they know which future texts are appropriate for them by reading level and interest, all discoverable within myON.

Like with Accelerated Reader, pupils love to earn quiz points by completing book quizzes and scoring highly in demonstrating a comprehensive understanding of each text they’re reading in content and reading comprehension. So, because myON makes it so easy to read and quiz, we’re seeing more reading engagement both inside and outside of school than ever before!

myON makes reading on the go easy. For example, if a pupil cannot attend school because they’re sick or for any reason, we can assign books to read via myON on their personal devices and see how much reading they’ve engaged with. In the future, we hope to access myON projects which allow teachers to set up homework and curriculum-themed reading throughout the academic year and during holidays.

Using myON for curriculum-themed activities has already proven to be a valuable resource. For example, we have one teacher who is currently teaching the topic of the Greeks. They have myON up on the interactive whiteboard, sharing non-fiction texts around ancient Greece and graphic novels of Greek myths, while pupils follow along on their own classroom devices. In addition, whole-class guided reading with myON allows the teacher to guide pupils throughout topical texts and assign further reading to boost each pupil’s understanding of the topic as it is explored throughout the term.

With myON, the teacher can zoom in and out on specific words and images; they can leave annotations on the page identifying key components of the text to support learning. Where there are words or phrases that are challenging for the class or individuals, the teacher can use the live dictionary/thesaurus to provide a live definition to the class, which pupils can also discover on their classroom tablets.

A Complete Literacy Solution for the future

“At Hevingham Primary School, we know that if you can crack reading interest and engagement for all pupils, broader access to the curriculum across all subjects becomes more available and obtainable.”

With Accelerated Reader and myON, we’ve found that pupils are now more motivated than ever with reading and accessing books.

The points earned from book quizzes keep pupils interested in reading and wanting to challenge themes led with different texts, rather than reading the same book repeatedly, which they know they can read easily.

The data and information from myON and Star Reading assessments pinpoints what pupils need to work on to master specific reading domains to see growth, such as vocabulary acquisition, SPaG or general reading comprehension.

At Hevingham Primary School, we know that if you can crack reading interest and engagement for all pupils, broader access to the curriculum across all subjects becomes more available and obtainable.

Click here to find out how your school can use myON, the digital library, to support your reading development strategy.


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