Boys who read achieve: Book Week and Literacy at Dilworth Senior Campus

Students across all Dilworth School campuses achieve exceptional results when it comes to literacy. Our NCEA literacy results are comparable to some of the highest performing academic schools in the country and significantly higher than the national average.

Developing a love of reading is one way that the school seeks to improve the literacy levels of all students. Head of the Senior Campus, Neil Ritchie says “I saw a sign recently that said ‘boys who read achieve’. I think this quote summarises how fundamental literacy is to all aspects of academic achievement. Through reading and developing a love of literature, students are constantly learning and extending their vocabulary which benefits them in all facets of life.”

Central to enhancing literacy at the Senior Campus, all students partake in Silent Sustained Reading (SSR) through to Year 13. All students must read for 20 minutes each day which is scheduled into their timetable. They are able to choose their own books from the well-resourced school library or provide their own so that they can read books from genres and topics that interest them. Compulsory SSR has been at the Senior Campus for over 20 years and Neil Ritchie says it is essential for promoting the joy of reading and helping students with their literacy, as demonstrated through the exceptional NCEA results at the school.

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Senior Campus students partaking in the "Break out from the Library" escape game as part of 2020 Book Week. 

Last week, Dilworth Senior Campus held the annual Book Week. The purpose of Book Week is to get the students engaged with reading and literature. The campus library is device-free at lunch time during Book Week and there are a range of activities and competitions. This year, the theme was “Read to Reel” which focussed on books that had been turned into a film or TV series. Activities included paper sculpture sessions, book trivia quizzes (including staff), a “break out from the library” escape game, bookmark sessions and poetry creation stations. Competitions included matching the teacher to the favourite book, matching quotes to the book and book in a jar. There were prize incentives for all of the competitions to get the students excited and involved in Book Week. Year 10 student Michael enjoyed the activities during Book Week and said, “I really liked the breakout game – everybody was rushing around and it was really cool”. For Year 12 student Barton-Ray, a highlight was having the library device-free for the week. “It’s great to do different things in the library rather than just playing on our devices” he said. Elijah, a Year 10 student summarised Book Week by saying “the library became a busy social area with lots of different things to do.”

June 24, 2020